However, he is still struggling to come to terms with dates. The Prankster has received a number of claim forms for parking at the Co-op with the date of parking 1 January 1900. Horseless carriages had been around for around 15 years by then and so had the Co-op, but The Prankster does not think any parking problems existed, and Civil enforcement Limited certainly didn't.
Other problems include stating the 'debt was assigned [...] with the knowledge of the Co-operative' when the Co-op have denied this, and that the claimant is claiming damages for trespass when they have no rights over the land.
The claim is also for a debt which has only been partially assigned to DEAL and for which DEAL do not seem to have ever come up with proof of assignment.
The claim also states the claim is for a contractual charge. The Prankster does not have copies of every co-op parking sign, and the fact that the true data of parking is not known does not help, but on the balance of probabilities this is not true either. Civil Enforcement Limited only moved over to a contractual model comparatively recently.
The claim also asks for £50 solicitor costs. While this would be allowable if Mr Schwartz bills DEAL £50 for his time, the template nature and schoolboy errors suggest he is just given a stack of these to whip through and sign, and presumably charges accordingly. The Prankster suggests £5-£10 is the going rate for this kind of service.
What to do if you had one of these?
If you have one of these forms, The Prankster therefore advises sending a copy to the Solicitors Regulatory Authority to help with their ongoing enquiry into Mr Schwartz. Here is a suggested email. Alter it to suit your circustances
For the attention of Heather Gelder, Head of Intelligence
Dear Ms Gelder,
I enclose a claim form signed by Mr M Schwartz. I understand you are currently investigating him for various matters. I wish to draw the following to your attention, any or all of which may be breaches of the solicitors code of conduct.
1) The date of parking is stated as 1-1-1900 which is an impossibility and suggests he has not actually read the claim diligently or prepared it himself. I understand he has form for this type of behaviour, spelling his own name incorrectly many times.
2) He claims that the debt was assigned to the claimant with the full knowledge of the co-operative. However, the co-operative have denied this, and this therefore appears to be a fraudulent claim.
3) The claim is for an alleged debt which has only had 87.5% assigned to the claimant. This therefore appears to fraudulent, or at best misleading
4) The claim is stated to be for a contractual charge. However, it is believed the signage at the time of the incident (which cannot be verified as the date is not given) in fact asks for damages for breach of contract and not a contractual charge. He is therefore either guilty of not correctly researching the claim or of improperly stating the claim.
5) The claim also asks for damages for trespass. As the landowner is the co-op, this is an impossibility, and Mr Schwartz must know this.
6) The form claims £50 for Mr Schwartz's costs. It is unlikely he actually charged this amount to the claimant, given the template nature of the form and schoolboy errors which no competent solicitor would make. If so this would be fraudulent on his part to sign the claim form stating he did charge £50.
7) The claim form was filed with no prior letter before claim. The last communication with this company was several months ago. This is a breach of the pre-court protocol.
You must of course also defend the claim. The pepipoo website is a good place to go for help, and Gan has written a defence to see off this spurious claim. Don't forget also that the co-op has two test cases in the pipeline against CEL and DEAL for ticketing their own employees and refusing to cancel the tickets.
The Parking Prankster