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Ownership of car

(27 Posts)
Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 17:19:05

My daughter needs a car and has a driving licence but no money; I have the money but no driving licence.
So I bought the car for her. It now turns out that she has a council tax debt and did not know about it as letters keep getting lost. This morning she had a recorded letter to say that there would be bailiffs if she didn't pay the council tax. I have sent her some money to buy her some time but my worry is that if the matter does not get dealt with by the council and the bailiffs see her car (that I paid for) it will be impounded. This of course could happen at any time in the futre and it was a situation I did not foresee at all.
The situation is even more difficult as the new (new) car broke down after three days and has gone back to the dealers. She has a courtesy car and I don't even know whether the bailiffs could touch that.
How does one deal with a situation like that?

thecapitalsunited Thu 03-Mar-16 17:44:26

While the V5 might not be proof of ownership, if the car is registered in your daughters name it might be difficult to persuade the bailiffs that the car doesn't belong to your daughter. If you have the receipt in your name you could claim that you own the car showing the receipt as proof.

The best course of action is to of course pay the debt as soon as possible so that matters don't get as far as the bailiffs in the first place.

Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 17:49:01

Thank you for the answer.
She simply did not know that the debt existed. She has no idea why letters, other than recorded don't get there. The council say they have not received her letters for which she has proof of delivery. Somebody at the council signed for them and they say they did not received them.
What is a V5?

lljkk Thu 03-Mar-16 18:43:14

um... sorry, but recorded delivery letters (multiple) didn't reach her? Are you sure your DD is being truthful with you, OP?

How did she Not Know she Wasn't Paying Council Tax? How much is the Council Tax Debt; I would have thought it could be paid off to make this all go away.

Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 18:57:43

Sorry about the misunderstanding. She gets recorded letters, the ones she is missing are not recorded.
To be totally honest, I think she may well be at least careless and at worst dishonest with me. I think careless is more likely. She is a single mum, two children and a part time job, and definitely not the most organisesd bod in the world.
She thought that the council were paying her council tax benefits as she is on a low wage and other benefits. She had sent in copies of all paperwork which the council say they have not received in spite of her having signed receipts for them.

unimaginativename13 Thu 03-Mar-16 18:58:30

Technically you gifted your daughter a car, in her name, so therefore the bailiff can take it.

If it wasn't there for the taking then you should have kept it in your name or have a loan contract written.

Letters don't just get lost. They get sent to the house where the council tax should be paid. They aren't going to go to wrong address

thecapitalsunited Thu 03-Mar-16 19:01:41

The V5 is the car's log book.

It does sound suspicious that she wasn't receiving council tax letters until she was threatened with bailiffs but that's obviously between you, your daughter and the council. Non-payment of council tax is quite serious and can even result in a prison sentence so I'd advise you both to settle the debt as soon as possible.

Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 19:14:49

The thing is that she thought she had a claim for exemption or deduction of the council tax going on. She doesn't know why she does not get her letters either, she has spoken to the Post Office on a regular basis and they don't know either. (Does that surprise anybody?) It's not the first time that she has been in trouble because she doesn't get her post.
The bailiff letter came recorded delivery, that's why she got it.
The original question was, though, how we could avoid the bailiff taking a car that I paid for. What do we have to do to make sure that does not happen?

YeOldeTrout Thu 03-Mar-16 19:18:33

Pay off the debt, Dutchoma. They are only threatening to take the car so they can sell it to pay the debt. they don't actually want the car. If you can hand the bailiff the money when bailiff turns up then bailiff won't take the car.

How much is the debt.

RaptorInaPorkPieHat Thu 03-Mar-16 19:19:00

Is the car on finance? If so I don't think they can take it as it would belong to the finance company.

Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 19:25:36

That's just it, we don't know what the debt is because the council have not told her what she should pay given her circumstances, they have not worked that out.
The car is not on finance as the problem was that I could not have it in my name, otherwise it would have been a lease contract. The bailiff should not be able to take it, because technically the car is mine, only it could not be registered to me as I don't have a driving licence.
That is the nub of the problem: she has the licence, I have (had). the money. If I knew for certain what she owes the council, we might be able to do something about it. Just at the moment we don't have a clue.

wannabestressfree Thu 03-Mar-16 19:29:04

They can't take it if it's on any kind of finance. Keep the car away from the house for the time being
She needs to phone the council first thing in the morning and make an arrangement to pay . This won't go away and only they can call the bailiffs off.

wannabestressfree Thu 03-Mar-16 19:31:30

Dutch it's not yours sorry you just paid for it.
Also they will tell her what she owes. She is not being truthful there particularly in light of baliff action.

lljkk Thu 03-Mar-16 19:31:46

Dutch: have you actually seen the letter about bailiffs? It seems weird to me that there's no mention of precise amount.

I am pretty sure if she phones the council first thing tomorrow they will state the precise amount. They don't take credit cards as I recall, though, but do take bank transfer or cash.

Council lose money if they actually send bailiffs, so typically would not send bailiffs for 3-7 days after the letter has arrived; they would much prefer the bill settled without having to send Bailiffs.

Some creditors (not sure about council, mind) may consider allowing most the debt to be paid off immediately (like 90%) but remainder in installments.

kirinm Thu 03-Mar-16 19:37:03

The council will allow repayments to be made even when it gets to the point of the bailiff turning up. She just needs to keep making the payments. Council tax bailiffs have significantly more rights than normal bailiffs. The CBA would tell you that CT is just one of the bills you absolutely have to pay as a priority (that and rent).

Sounds like you need to get involved. If you don't know what she's entitled to, a payment plan should be worked out based on the debt as it currently is - to ensure no more bailiffs and she keeps the car, and that can then be adjusted once her CT benefit has been sorted out.

It took me years to get out of debt and I think about 2 years to pay CT back but ultimately it'll end in a criminal conviction if she doesn't act quickly and sensibly. But remember a payment plan is perfectly do-able.

Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 19:46:43

The car is away from the house as it had to be towed back to the dealers after three days for a faulty fuel injector (or some such). She has a courtesy car.
That is interesting Wannabestressfree, not being the owner when you have paid for a thing. I'm sure you are right, but it just had not occurred to me.

There is such a horrendous lack of ccommunication: she made a claim for exemption from council tax: council say they have not got it in spite of dd having signed and stamped receipts for her letters.
She does not get the letters from the council until a recorded letter from bailiffs arrive stating that she owes money without taking the claim for exemption into account.
Don't worry: she will be off to the council first thing tomorrow.

unimaginativename13 Thu 03-Mar-16 20:14:06

A car can be in your name even if you don't have a licence. You own a car.

But you didn't do that. You bought her a car. So it's hers if they decide to repossess.

kirinm Thu 03-Mar-16 20:17:51

They won't repossess if she talks to them. They might write details of the car down as an asset they could take if she doesn't keep to any arranged payment plan.

I was terrified when this happened to me but it got sorted even if the council are being crap.

Fourormore Thu 03-Mar-16 20:23:08

Who bought the car? Whose name is on the receipt? Did you buy the car or did you gift her the money so she could buy the car?

The V5 is not proof of ownership - it says this clearly at the top.

Secondly, tell her to call the council tax people, ask to speak to a manager and ask them to recall the debt from the bailiff because she is a vulnerable person. Then she needs to make payment arrangements. My council were really helpful when I got into a mess.

wannabestressfree Thu 03-Mar-16 21:43:56

I have to say as well that even on full benefits you normally have to pay something toward ct etc.
If she has all this dated and stamped stuff she needs to go there tomorrow not ring and sort it out with a payment plan.

Dutchoma Thu 03-Mar-16 22:10:06

We seem to be getting there. Thank you all for your help, very enlightening.

Sootica Fri 04-Mar-16 07:38:49

They can't take the courtesy car. That belongs to the garage
You could put the car in your name for future issues like this! You don't need a driving licence to own a car. Keep the receipt to hand if the bailiffs do turn up with regard to her car. Don't say it was a gift! Just that you bought it and thought you couldn't have it in your name because you don't have a driving licence:

Dutchoma Fri 04-Mar-16 07:56:29

For the time being I think the bailiffs have been called off as she (I) paid half of what the council wanted and they have given her a month to sort things with the council. They have been messing her about big time and the local MP's office has been involved in sorting the mess. Also she is not the only one in the street who has trouble with receiving mail, there are at least two other people who have said they have trouble. Of course it is difficult to del with something that isn't happening: how do you prove you have not received something?
She should be straight as soon as the council get their finger out. But I will still make sure that the car is in my name, although I am not quite sure how to go about it. Would I be liable if she got, say, a parking ticket?

thecapitalsunited Fri 04-Mar-16 08:45:25

Is the receipt for the car in your name? If so then it doesn't matter who's name the car is registered in with the dvla since the log book is not proof of ownership. Sometimes you have to point out to bailiffs that the v5 does actually say this in big letters across the top of the document.

thecapitalsunited Fri 04-Mar-16 08:46:18

Parking tickets and speeding tickets are dealt with by the registered keeper ie the person named on the v5.

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