Liklihood of a out of court settlement & letter drafting

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Green2

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Posts #1 - #13 originally in this thread
From previous posts on here, Thameslink are generally quite open to settling out of court.
What other TOCs are open to setting out of court? Would GA be one of them?
 
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Tazi Hupefi

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What other TOCs are open to setting out of court? Would GA be one of them?
They all appear to be open to settling of of court, so long as you don't have any "previous" adverse dealings with them, and you haven't done anything to wind them up or aggravate the situation.

During my reading of some "historic" posts on this forum, it appears that Transport for London are the exception, and they seem to prosecute out of sheer principal more than anything else.
 

Green2

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Welcome to the forum.

You will receive a letter from the train company (or an investigation company acting on their behalf) which will probably take a few weeks to arrive saying that they have received a report, are considering prosecuting you and asking for your version of events. It is important that you engage with and reply to this letter. You might want to include the following in your reply:

- That you are sorry for what has happened
- What you have learned from the incident
- That you are keen to settle the matter without the need for court action
- Offer to pay the outstanding fare and the train company's administrative costs in dealing with the matter

Make sure your reply is short and concise, don't give a sob story - they've heard it all before. Most train companies are usually prepared to offer an administrative (commonly known as an out of court settlement) for people who engage with the process and who haven't come to their attention before. There is no guarantee of this, and the fact that you have done this several times means that the train company would be well within their rights to prosecute you in the magistrates court.

If you are offered a settlement the amount varies depending on the train company and circumstances but tend to be a few hundred pounds plus the outstanding fare.
This is good advice, what do you mean when you say don't give a sob story? So, if there are multiple factors that have played a part in the lapse of judgement, do you suggest not mentioning them? I.e. if you have a medical condition and was feeling under the weather and wasn't in the right mind frame - any point mentioning this or just accept, show remorse and offer to settle the matter without the need for court action?

How would you go about drafting such letter? If it was your first offence and you haven't done it in the past, how likely are they not to prosecute you?

Sorry for the multitude of questions but I'm in a similar pickle!

They all appear to be open to settling of of court, so long as you don't have any "previous" adverse dealings with them, and you haven't done anything to wind them up or aggravate the situation.

During my reading of some "historic" posts on this forum, it appears that Transport for London are the exception, and they seem to prosecute out of sheer principal more than anything else.
Oh, thank you for your swift reply!
 

Tazi Hupefi

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Dear Company,

Reference Number 1234567

I regret my actions on xxx date at xxx station, and would like to offer to repay any fares, along with the administration and other costs you have no doubt incurred as a result.

I can assure you that I have learned from this incident and will ensure that I am properly aware of my obligations whilst travelling by train in the future.

Yours,

Name


Something simple like that I should say will suffice. Nothing over the top, keep it simple.
 

Haywain

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Dear Company,

Reference Number 1234567

I regret my actions on xxx date at xxx station, and would like to offer to repay any fares, along with the administration and other costs you have no doubt incurred as a result.

I can assure you that I have learned from this incident and will ensure that I am properly aware of my obligations whilst travelling by train in the future.

Yours,

Name


Something simple like that I should say will suffice. Nothing over the top, keep it simple.
I have often said that people have posted draft letters that have been too long, but that looks a bit too brief to me!
 

Green2

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I have often said that people have posted draft letters that have been too long, but that looks a bit too brief to me!
Dear Company,

Reference Number 1234567

I regret my actions on xxx date at xxx station, and would like to offer to repay any fares, along with the administration and other costs you have no doubt incurred as a result.

I can assure you that I have learned from this incident and will ensure that I am properly aware of my obligations whilst travelling by train in the future.

Yours,

Name


Something simple like that I should say will suffice. Nothing over the top, keep it simple.
Thank you both, this is useful!
 

6Gman

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This is good advice, what do you mean when you say don't give a sob story? So, if there are multiple factors that have played a part in the lapse of judgement, do you suggest not mentioning them? I.e. if you have a medical condition and was feeling under the weather and wasn't in the right mind frame - any point mentioning this or just accept, show remorse and offer to settle the matter without the need for court action?

How would you go about drafting such letter? If it was your first offence and you haven't done it in the past, how likely are they not to prosecute you?

Sorry for the multitude of questions but I'm in a similar pickle!


Oh, thank you for your swift reply!
I'm of the mind that "medical issues" are only relevant if they can be supported by professional evidence.
 

Green2

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I'm of the mind that "medical issues" are only relevant if they can be supported by professional evidence.
Yes, recent diagnosis by GP. Can obtain health records to show this.

I don't want to prolong this whole ordeal though. I realise what I've done is wrong and want to pay for this mistake (whatever the fine is) and avoid this whole thing going to court. I've learnt my lesson, massive lapse of judgement brought about by many different factors (but I suspect they'll have none of it - so what's the point of me mentioning it?), I have thought about the factors that led to this and have now put measures in place to avoid this happening again. I just really hope they agree to settle out of court.
 

Green2

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And even then they don't really change anything.
So, what's the actual point of trying to explain the contexts? Should just cut to the chase and say "sorry, I understand the gravity of what I did, wont happen again, lets settle out of court please?"
 

AlterEgo

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So, what's the actual point of trying to explain the contexts? Should just cut to the chase and say "sorry, I understand the gravity of what I did, wont happen again, lets settle out of court please?"
That’s pretty much it. It isn’t going to make any difference to the company or affect how and if they’ll settle.
 

philthetube

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Depending on what medical issues are, they may make a difference, companies are scared of bad publicity, only the op will know if that is the case this time however.
 

6Gman

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Depending on what medical issues are, they may make a difference, companies are scared of bad publicity, only the op will know if that is the case this time however.
I think this is a key point. There is a huge difference between "the patient sometimes suffers depressive interludes during which he may get slightly confused" and "the patient experiences transient ischaemic attacks during which he suffers a total loss of sense of place and during which he cannot be responsible for his actions".
 

AlterEgo

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I think this is a key point. There is a huge difference between "the patient sometimes suffers depressive interludes during which he may get slightly confused" and "the patient experiences transient ischaemic attacks during which he suffers a total loss of sense of place and during which he cannot be responsible for his actions".
If the latter were true then his letter wouldn’t be one of mitigation but rather one of defence.

Having a medical condition and feeling under the weather on the day you committed the offence will make no difference to a company’s willingness to settle or the amount offered, really. It will only be extra lines for the staff to read.

The company doesn’t really care why you committed the offence unless you plan to defend yourself from the offence, which doesn’t appear to be the case here.
 

Master29

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I think this is a key point. There is a huge difference between "the patient sometimes suffers depressive interludes during which he may get slightly confused" and "the patient experiences transient ischaemic attacks during which he suffers a total loss of sense of place and during which he cannot be responsible for his actions".
However from the number of times ( around 20 I think) the OP admits he has omitted to by tickets for the same journey then surely this wouldn't stand up but as AlterEgo points out there is no court case on the cards anyway at the moment.
 

30907

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However from the number of times ( around 20 I think) the OP admits he has omitted to by tickets for the same journey then surely this wouldn't stand up but as AlterEgo points out there is no court case on the cards anyway at the moment.
That was Green2 in the original thread. We don't know precisely what captive.mind has done.
 

Master29

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That was Green2 in the original thread. We don't know precisely what captive.mind has done.
Ah I see. I was under the impression the carried on thread was the same individual but thanks anyway.
 
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