Legal Occupier successfully fines TVL

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Legal Occupier successfully fines TVL

Postby Freeman Stephen » Sun May 04, 2014 9:10 pm

I saw this post on goodf where a guy successfully fines tvl

EverybodyKnows wrote:Here is a brief summary of my recent success with TV licensing:

At the analogue switchover (march 21 2012) my family gave up watching TV.
Phoned TV licensing and cancelled the licence - no problem; Revoked implied right of access - duely noted - were told to bin any automated letters in the next few weeks. Great.

A couple of months, and several binned letters later, a red demand - "Your property is now under investigation" letter came.

I phoned them and before answering their security questions, demanded they record the following terms and conditions:

1. This conversation is being recorded in case I need to use it as evidence in the private prossecution of any person involved
2. If your actions require me to phone, write or email you again I charge £20 each time
3. If I have to point out mistakes that you make, I charge £20 each time
I then demanded confirmation that this had been duly recorded. It had.

Having briefly explained why I should not have received the red letter the operator then tried to proceed with ridiculous security questions asking what was the name and number on the license! I explained that they must be encouraging me to lie as I had already explained that I do not have a license. I was passed to another operator...

I dictated my terms and conditions again to the second operator, but got a little further this time - he agreed that I should not have received the letter. I pointed out that I expected an apology and compensation. He said that the complaints dept. would phone me on Monday or Tuesday at the latest. (Ah ha!) So, I said, it would be reasonable for me to contact them if they had failed to do that by Friday?... "Yes" he agreed (gocha! acceptance = contract).

As expected, large organisations are predictably so poorly run they almost never keep their promisses... Friday passed, but on Saturday I received two letters (not the phone call as promissed) which made no sense, did not relate to my complaint and only referred to my original call in March (?WTF).

So now they had given me a reason to write to them (£20 'fine') and to point out their errors (£20 'fine'), which I did, listing all of my complaints and their errors as numbered points and demanding they reply to all points one by one. I signed off with this:

Although points 4-8 indicate numerous additional errors on your part I am willing (as a goodwill gesture) to waive individual charges and treat them as part of a single error:

Admin charges: Writing this letter £20 + Faults on your part £20 = £ 40.00
Amount deducted from your account £ 49.48

Balance we owe you: £ 9.48

Please find enclosed a balancing cheque for £ 9.48

DID YOU SPOT THE CLEVER BIT THERE? "Amount deducted from your account..."
The problem for us real people is that corporations will refuse to pay our fees/charges/fines, relying on the fact that we don't have the resources to take them to court over it. But I had a trick up my sleve... the Direct Debit Guarantee! I used to pay for my license by direct debit, so I simply phoned up my bank (Santander) and asked them to pull back three payments (totalling £49.48). This is a right you have and can exercise for any reason. The bank has to honour it (at least they should - and in my case they did) no questions asked. So £49.48 went straight back into my account, leaving me in the position of owing them the difference of £9.48, which I enclosed as a cheque! Very satisfying to be in control like that.

A week or so later I received a fairly grovelling apology and all of my points answered one by one. They also included compensation (="A gesture of goodwill" in their legalese) for £25, and stated that they would not cash the cheque I sent them.

So, overall I made £74.48 from them.

><)))'> ~ ~ ~ SUCCESS is easier, it appears, when you have control over the money!! ~ ~ ~ ~ ><)))'>

(BTW, they wrote "We do not accept your terms and conditions" - which is nonsense. More legal posturing. The reason they didn't challenge the direct debits I pulled back is because they didn't have a leg to stand on. Also, they tried to say that it was illegal to record a conversation without permission - again nonsense, because (1) their phone system tells us that they record our calls and does not ask for permission, and (2) I told each of their operator the same; neither objected - they could have hung up if they didn't want to be recorded couldn't they?)

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Freeman Stephen
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