20 June 2018

Bailiff not motivated by justice but by self interest

not the actual Fiesta, a much newer one.
Mr Mustard wrote about this last year but the problem has emerged once again, with 5 PCNs being issued this year. Given that both a lorry and a car are being sent paperwork about the same contravention we can't be sure that the Fiesta owner is getting all of the paperwork about a PCN. She regularly phones Dart Charge and they promise to put things right but they fail to. That was how a bailiff came to clamp her car last week.

The bailiff was shown one of the PCNs which contains this photo. 

Thus he knows that he has clamped a car which wasn't the vehicle that committed the contravention & he won't listen to any explanation about there clearly being an error in the system somewhere. His attitude was I've got a warrant with your name on it lady and I've clamped your car and the only way that will come off is you pay £429*. The debt which wasn't hers was duly paid, putting a single mum of two small children into overdraft.

The trouble with the bailiff remuneration system is that they only get paid when they collect so the incentive is there to extract payment whatever the circumstances (when clearly a error or a miscarriage of justice has occurred). 

The draconian powers of the bailiff should be exercised with a modicum of common sense. The bailiff may have the money for now but a complaint email is already in the inbox of the boss of Dart Charge with a demand for a refund and compensation. If a refund isn't forthcoming, a small claim will be issued in the County Court but Mr Mustard doubts that will be necessary.

There is no effective supervision or control of bailiffs by their employers, enforcement authorities, but there is no close daily oversight of their activities either. They both have too much power which sometimes gets misused & there is no inbuilt system for redress.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

* The balance tells the bailiff that the level of the debt is because a lorry failed to pay the £6 crossing fee to which is added £70, £35, £8, £75 & £235 = £429

For a car it would be £2.50 + as above = £425.50

Alarm bells should have been ringing in his head, but he wants that £310 for himself. Think of it as a short term loan Mr Bailiff, it will be going back with interest.

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