Remove an illegal wheel-clamp using bolt cutters - the law.

 

Bailiffs and police say it is an offence under Section 1 of the Criminal Damage Act 1971.

That is NOT true.

The law says - "A person who without LAWFUL EXCUSE - destroys or damages any property belonging to another".

That means, if the clamping of your vehicle is UNLAWFUL, you have lawful excuse to cut off the wheel-clamp.

There is one catch. - You MUST give the clamper a one hour deadline opportunity to remove the clamp.

 

If a constable continues the arrest while aware of the above, he commits an offence under section 26(5) of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015.

You lay the information before a Justice of the Peace under section 1 of the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 for the question of reporting the constable for the offence. The arrest is toxic for the arresting officer.

 

 

The clamping of your vehicle is ILLEGAL if it is:

 

Not yours, leased, or financed without the final payment made. Paragraph 10 of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 says "an enforcement agent may take control of goods only if they are goods of the debtor."

Used in your employment work or education, or other exemption. Regulation 4 of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013.

disabled badge displayed inside. Regulation 4(1)(d) of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013.

Being driven by someone. Regulation 10(2) of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013 states "Where an item which belongs to the debtor is in use by any person at the time at which the enforcement agent seeks to take control of it".

Clamped before 6am or after 9pm. Regulation 13 of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013

You were not given the Notice of Enforcement. Paragraph 7(1) of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007.

The "amount outstanding" has been paid. Regulation 6(3) of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007. Guideline 31 of the Taking Control of Goods: National Standards 2014 states, "Enforcement agents must not seek to enforce the recovery of fees where an enforcement power has ceased to be exercisable"

 

You did not know about the original debt until you received a bailiff. Law depends on the debt.

Magistrates' court fine: Section 14 of the Magistrates Courts Act 1980

Council tax: Regulation 23 or Regulation 33 of the Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992

Civil Traffic debt: Part 75.7 of the Civil Procedure Rules

High Court Enforcement Debts: Run this checklist and apply to stay the writ and set aside the judgment

The bailiff has no certificate. He commits an offence under Section 63(6) of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007. Check here

The debt is over 12 months old. Enforcement expires after 12 months following the date of issue on the Notice of Enforcement. Regulation 9(1) of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013. More.

The vehicle is situated on land the debtor neither lives nor carries on a trade. The clamper commits an offence under Section 54 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. Private land includes private roads not adopted by the council and shopping centres.

 

 

Procedure

If the bailiff breached any of these, he cannot recover fees. Regulation 3 of the Taking Control of Goods (Fees) Regulations 2014. You can recover them by claiming under Paragraph 66 of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007.

Make a video of the bodywork and interior to prove it is undamaged. Using a selfie stick, make a video of the underside. Check the vehicles’ contents. Bailiffs are liable for damage to the car while under his control. Paragraph 35 of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007.

Recording the call on your phone, ask the bailiff to remove the clamp. Say why it is unlawful. Give him an hour. Report it to police on 101 and keep the "it's a civil matter" rebuttal stored on your phone.

 

If you are still clamped an hour later:

You can remove the clamp using reasonable force. Criminal liability is void under Section 5(2)(b)(i) of the Criminal Damage Act 1971. Here is how to safely remove an illegal wheel-clamp.

NEVER inject the padlock with superglue

Make a claim for damages from the creditor or council the bailiff is acting.

If you followed the above and charged with an offence, contact me. We can do something about it.

 

 

Low value & end of life vehicles

consider this method of wheel clamp removal

 

 

DVLA clamping

This article applies to bailiffs clamping for unpaid debts. Not DVLA clamping unpaid car tax or COUNCIL owned car parks regulated under Section 79 of the Traffic Management Act 2004.