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Can you contest a court fine?

(10 Posts)
Scarletspy Thu 19-Jan-17 15:52:54

First off I'd like to say I've never been in trouble before. Never had any run ins with the police, etc so imagine my surprise when they knocked my door at 10am this morning and told me they had a warrant for my arrest! The said it was for an unpaid £150 fine issues in 2015. I had to pay it or be taken into custody. I didn't have the money and I was freaking out because I couldn't leave my nana alone (she has dementia) and I have an anxiety disorder so I ended up having an anxiety attack. The police were really helpful though. I called my mum who said she'd go down and pay it at her local police station.

Before this visit I had never heard anything about a fine. The police said I should have been sent several letter but I haven't received anything. He said they might have been sent to my old address (we moved around the time it was issued) but I had set up mail redirection for 3 months so I would have received anything at my new address.

I've wracked my brains and have no idea what the fine was for. The police suggested it might be TV license but mine is up to date. Could it be a speeding ticket? No. Expired tax certificate? No. The police said they wouldn't take me in because it would be paid shortly and said he's investigate it for me.

He came back this afternoon and said it was a charge for parking on the street without insurance and not to worry because it was paid now. He couldn't give me details about what car it was in relation to. We've had a motability car since end January 2015 so I knew it couldn't be that car because you're insured as soon as you get it. The reason we had got a motability car is out old car had died before christmas 2014. I phoned my old insurance company to check there was no issues with insurance for that car. They said I was fully insured from 25/04/14 (when I got the car) until 15/01/15. I had scrapped the car the first week in January 15 and cancelled my insurance after that so the charge can't be from that car. Those are the only 2 cars I've driven in recent history.

My mother said I should let it go because the fine has been issued by the court and paid now so there's nothing I ca do. Is this true? I honestly don't think this is a result of something I've done. I'm out £150 (which I can't afford) and have been having major anxiety all day. Plus, do I have a criminal record now? I've tried contacting the Fine Enforcement Officer but haven't had any luck so far.

All advice is welcome. Anything to put my mind at ease. I'm in Scotland BTW.

Bailey101 Thu 19-Jan-17 16:02:05

I can't advise on whether you can contest it, but when I was with Tesco for my car insurance, I found out 7 months into the policy that they hadn't updated the databases to say I was insured - my car was showing as uninsured and had been for months!! Could this be why they thought it was uninsured? If so, that should be good grounds for appeal.

Also, have you checked the dvla to make sure you don't have any points on your license? I don't know if they give points if they don't catch you driving, but would be worth a check.

Scarletspy Thu 19-Jan-17 16:09:29

I never thought about points. I'll give the DVLA a ring in the morning and find out.

I'm hoping the Enforcement Officer will get back to me so that I can find out exactly when the fine was issued so that I know if it was while I still had that car or not. Hopefully he'll get back to me soon

Thanks for replying.

Bailey101 Thu 19-Jan-17 16:27:18

You can check your license online, try googling dvla license check and you'll need your license number and national insurance number - it might be quicker then phoning them and sitting on hold.

Good luck, I hope you get it sorted!

Scarletspy Thu 19-Jan-17 17:57:34

I got hold of the Fine Enforcement Officer who told me the letter were sent to my old address started August 2015 about the fine. I advised that I had moved out of that address at end January 2015. He said the fine had been issued May 2015 - four months after I scrapped the car. He advised that I should call the procurator fiscal to get it sorted out asap.

I called the procurator fiscal and spoke to the unit manager. She said they had received a report from DVLA in May 2015 that I was the registered keeper a a vehicle without insurance. I explained that I had scrapped the car. She asked if I had filled in the logbook and sent it to the DVLA which I had. I've checked with the DVLA today and they obviously didn't receive the notification because they still have the car registered as active.

I'm not really sure what I can do now. The manager said she'd speak to the PF on Monday but I'm not sure I have any options. I don't have any documentation - like I said, it was 2 years ago and I got rid of all the old stuff when I moved.

I did check with the DVLA and I didn't receive any points so that's something I guess.

Bailey101 Thu 19-Jan-17 19:53:55

Did you get any money for scrapping it? You might have a bank statement with the scrapper's name on a transaction. That would at least show you scrapped a car, and they might accept that.

What a nightmare flowers

Scarletspy Thu 19-Jan-17 20:25:22

I didn't get any money for it. It was a complete junker to be honest.

I'm hoping I get some positive news on Monday.

TeaBelle Thu 19-Jan-17 20:27:45

I got told in a simillar situation that it was my responsibility to chase the dvla when I didn't receive a receipt from them when in submitted the notice of sale/scrappage

YesICanHearYouClemFandango Thu 19-Jan-17 20:53:34

Do you know which court dealt with your case? I think you need to phone them. In England and Wales, if you find out that a case has been dealt with in your absence without you being aware of the proceedings, you can attend your local court (by appointment) and make a Statutory Decalaration. This is a sworn statement that you knew nothing about the case. The original penalty is then wiped (so if a fine had already been paid, as in your case, you would get it refunded), and the proceedings go back to the beginning - i.e. DVLA would give you details of the offence, you would plead guilty or not guilty, and it would go from there. Hopefully you will get some advice from the prosecutor on Monday about what proof might be required to get them to drop the case.

I know you're in Scotland so the legal system is slightly different, but I'm sure there's a similar procedure. Oh and this type of offence doesn't show up on any sort of DBS check and you wouldn't ever have to declare it for any purpose, so don't worry about the criminal record.

Scarletspy Thu 19-Jan-17 21:13:13

Thanks for the replies. I was in the process of moving through January - beginning of February 2015 so once it was scrapped and the form sent away it completely slipped my mind.

I'll contact the DVLA tomorrow and see what they say about it all.

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