Equita & PCN - Advice please

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truebluexx
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Joined: 27 Mar 2015 20:31

#1 Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by truebluexx » 27 Mar 2015 20:52

I received a PCN and didn't manage to pay it within the stated period so had to pay £75, I paid £50 and forgot to pay the remaining £25 the following week so the LA added a £7 charge making a total of £32 outstanding.
I received a Notice of Enforcement from Equita with a compliance fee of £75 added to the original charge making a debt of £107. I called Equita on 18th Feb and made an arrangement to pay £10 per week as I am on a very low income. We agreed the first payment would be made on Saturday 21st Feb and every Saturday after until cleared.
Early hours Tuesday 24th March I found a letter hand posted through my door which was an Enforcement Notice stating I had 24 hours to contact them or my goods would be removed for sale to cover the outstanding balance of £342 (£107 debt + £235 enforcement fee)
I called the mobile number on the letter to ask what this was regarding as I had a payment plan in place to pay the original £107 debt. I was told by the bailiff on the phone that there was no arrangement in place but I insisted there was and he said he would check his notes. He then advised that I'd been paying late (I hadn't) and that I'd missed a payment on 7th March (looking through my records I had missed a payment)
I told him I wasn't aware that I'd missed a payment and that I would pay the shortfall now but he advised that they wanted the full amount of £342 or they were taking my car. I told him he couldn't take my car as it doesn't actually belong to me, my dad took the finance out in his name, but the bailiff insisted that he could still take the car. He said he would call and try and get the payment plan reinstated for me but called me back to say that the company had said no and he was to remove the car (I'm not quite sure who he spoke to at 7.30am in the morning???) I told him I had to get my son to school and he stated that I wasn't going anywhere as my car was clamped on my drive and that if I didn't have the full amount my car was being taken at 9am.
I am a single parent with a 6 yr old child and panicked at the though of my car being taken so I begged and borrowed £302 from family members and paid the bailiff over the phone.
He later knocked on my door, handed me a receipt and said he'd unclamped my car.
Equita never contacted me about missing a payment and the bailiff never knocked on my door or tried to alert me that he was taking my car.
I took the test in the first post and it came back with various reasons to make a complaint, ie car on finance and vulnerable family
I think taking a £3000 car is a bit excessive for missing a £10 instalment or a £67 debt.
Any advice on how I can proceed with making a complaint would be much appreciated.
Many thanks in advance

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Schedule 12
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#2 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by Schedule 12 » 27 Mar 2015 22:00

Can you confirm the has been taken or is it just clamped on your drive?
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Author: dealingwithbailiffs.co.uk

truebluexx
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Joined: 27 Mar 2015 20:31

#3 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by truebluexx » 27 Mar 2015 22:06

It was unclamped as I paid the whole amount over the phone to bailiff

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Schedule 12
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#4 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by Schedule 12 » 27 Mar 2015 22:06

What action do you want to take?
Run this Checklist. If no joy, then we'll fix it
Author: dealingwithbailiffs.co.uk

truebluexx
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#5 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by truebluexx » 27 Mar 2015 22:10

I think the way the bailiff acted was very sneaky and underhand as he didn't even knock on my door, just posted a letter through. I think I was basically bullied into paying as he couldn't have taken the car anyway. I want the £235 enforcement fee back. I hold my hands up to the fine and compliance fee and was paying that off weekly.

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#6 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by Schedule 12 » 27 Mar 2015 22:15

You need to make a formal complaint. Say you were repaying the fine but the bailiff attended under his own free solely to avail himself to £235 he would otherwise not obtain. If you complaint is fobbed off with 'contact the bailiffs' then approach the Local Government Ombudsman. I don't rate your chances great in the small claims track, but never say never.
Run this Checklist. If no joy, then we'll fix it
Author: dealingwithbailiffs.co.uk

truebluexx
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#7 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by truebluexx » 27 Mar 2015 22:21

Thanks for your reply, the list of reasons for complaint is endless: single parent with a young child in the house, no ID, no contact, car on finance in someone else's name, bailiff lying about what he can and can't do legally.
Also wondering if there should've been some form of contact from Equita about the missed payment before sending bailiffs to remove goods?

Do I make the complaint to Equita or the LA who issued the PCN?

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Schedule 12
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#8 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by Schedule 12 » 29 Mar 2015 16:30

Run this Checklist. If no joy, then we'll fix it
Author: dealingwithbailiffs.co.uk

truebluexx
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#9 Re: Equita & PCN - Advice please

Post by truebluexx » 11 Apr 2015 14:42

Thanks for the advice.

Just a quick update: I sent a letter of complaint to Derby City Council Parking Services, DCC CEO, Equita and my local MP. I highlighted all of the 'National Standards' that I thought they had breached and good news, Equita are refunding the enforcement fee as a 'goodwill gesture'

Don't let the bailiffs bully you!! :)

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