The torrent of nasty letters from TV Licensing continues.
You may recall back in October I wrote about TV Licensing, and the obnoxious tactics they were employing to try and make me buy a TV license for my place in Norwich – despite having previously declared to them that no live TV was being watched or recorded there.
Since then, I’ve received ten further letters, with no sign of them letting up. They are a litany of frankly horrific threats. It’s astonishing that any organisation in the UK can get away with sending such letters, let alone the BBC’s bully boys.
What to expect in court
Perhaps the worst of the lot is from December 2011. In it, TV Licensing do everything they can to suggest I’ll be taken to court. Bear in mind that at this point they have not established I am in need of a TV license. The letter begins:
You have not responded to our previous letters. We want to ensure you have the information you may need before a hearing is set at your local court.
Please read the information below carefully and keep for your records. You will be allowed to take it into court with you.
It continues (below a frankly bizarre ‘cut out and keep’ line):
If you are asked to appear in court, this is what you can expect to happen:
- You can appoint a lawyer to represent you, or you may represent yourself.
- Evidence collected during an enforcement visit to your property is used by the court to decide the penalty for TV License evasion.
- The court has the power to impose a fine of up to £1,000, plus legal costs.
- If your property needs a TV License, you will still need to buy one.
How to avoid a court summons
It is illegal to watch television programmes as they are being shown on TV without a TV License – no matter what device you use. The only way to stop this investigation from going any further is to do one of the following:
- Buy a TV License […].
- Let us know you don’t need one […].
The irony is that their very last suggestion – “let us know you don’t need one” – is precisely what I did do, back in February 2011. For all the good that did.
As I wrote before, the wording used by TV Licensing is deliberately constructed to be threatening and intimidating. Enforcement. Evasion. Penalty. Court. Hearing. Legal costs. It’s just nasty.
So, to summarise:
- I’m a TV License payer, for the property where a license is required and live TV is watched.
- I’ve met the obligations of TV Licensing by identifying another property as not requiring a TV license.
- That property has since been bombarded more than once a month with aggressive, abusive and obnoxiously threatening letters.
Does anyone still think TV Licensing is a good thing?