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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    4

    Exclamation Please Help me!!! DVLA/Courts : 1 - ME : 0

    Hi, I am a complete novice but think I know how powerful database can be.

    My problem is I have recently lost a court case against the UK Driver Vehicle Licence Agency.

    I lost because the DVLA Barrister blinded the Judge with science about how hard it would be for DVLA to put error checking in their Database.

    I am in court again next week asking a Higher Judge to allow me to appeal the lower courts decision.

    Does anyone know if there is a qualified DB consultant or academic (Judges love letters after names) who can pen a quick e-mail on the approx cost of implementing error checking on a large DB. I don't need a full report since I only need to convince the Judge in a 5 minute hearing that there is more to come and allow me to move on to full appeal.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    out on a limb
    Posts
    13,692
    DVLA doesn't make mistakes, this is a well proven and accepted fact*

    Occasionally there are times when the DVLA has taken sympathy with someone elses view (ie when they have been caught out lying or being dishonest, but even they the DVLA doesn't make mistakes)

    short of finding anyone with direct knowledge of the DVLA systems and specifically the systems you have an issue with, then I doubt you will get a credible opinion on the cost and or time scales involved in implementing 'error checking'. So I think your chances of getting the judge to see your perspective as near zero.

    If such a person exists then they are probably also prohibited from sharing such information through breach of confidentiality clauses.


    With the DVLA you are dealing a particularly pernicious and nasty form of government agency that is effectively a law unto itself. its an agency of government not a government department.

    you could kick things off by firing off a few FoI requests.

    * especially accepted by DVLA
    I'd rather be riding on the Tiger 800 or the Norton

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    4

    DVLA and Data Protection Act 1998

    Thanks for that reply. I am glad there is more than me who believe that there is one law for them and one for us.

    The Data Protection Act says Data Controllers need to periodically check the accuracy of data.

    I agree about needing to know the system they are using and in the longer term I may have to use FoI to get them to spill the info.

    At the moment the DVLA defence is; it would be too expensive to ensure that they comply with the DPA by keeping accurate records.

    All I need to show is that compared to the DVLA total budget (100m's, 1000m+?) 10k, 50k or 100k is not unreasonable to ensure Data Subjects cars are not seized and crushed by mistake.

    Let's get a court case won to set a precedent that Government can't make law (the DPA 1998) and not apply it to themselves.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    out on a limb
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    13,692
    as far as Im aware
    it would be too expensive to ensure that they comply with the DPA by keeping accurate records.
    is not an acceptable defence.
    its going to come down to what is "reasonable" and "periodic".
    if you can demonstrate that it was their cockup you may have a chance but you cna;'t blame them if its something you should have taken care of. ferinstance if you should have informed them of your change of address or change of ownership of a vehicle then you are legally required to inform DVLA. you can't wriggle out of your responsibilities

    it aslo depends on what checks they should be required to do. off hand I cna't think of any checks the DBLA woudl be required to do. afterall its down to drivers to ensure their address is valid (failing to do so is an offence), keeping the vehicle's registered keeper and address is the keepers responsibilty.

    unless you can prove that there is somehting else they 'should' be doing then your pleas will fall on deaf ears. the burden of proof lies on you.

    I know of people who have had to change their licence to find that DVLA dropped categories of entitlement whjilst in their hands. the kicker is that you have to hand in all documents to renew so you no longer have proof of what you are entitled to drive/ride. you can try to get round it if you have your documents witnessed by a a legally qualified witness (forget the title but it doens't need to be a lawyer). a photo copy by itself isn't proof (as DVLA doesnt' make mistakes and in any event a photo copy is easily faked.) the basic message is they don't screw up and when it comes to evidence their word is better than yours.

    for those of a sensitive disposition DVLA is the UK's equivalent of the US DMV, except they are more incompetent, uncaring, bureaucratic, imnpossible to deal with...
    I'd rather be riding on the Tiger 800 or the Norton

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    4

    Why I think DVLA are bang-to-rights

    The facts of the situation are that in 2004 I was convicted of no MOT, Insurance, licence in my absence and got points on my licence. I spoke to DVLA who told me only the court could overturn conviction and remove points.
    I went to back to court three weeks later and, overturned my conviction, the court told me they would inform DVLA that points were removed from my licence.

    Years later after my car was seized, Her Majesties Court Service said they sent notice of points removed from licence, DVLA claimed to have not received it.

    I took DVLA to court under DPA 1998 arguing that since a convicted motorist only has 28 days to appeal a conviction then a second data check some time after that could double check whether an appeal was succesful.

    Also they would only have to check those convictions where they are planning to revoke the licence of the motorist. Mine was revoked for four years before I was stopped and my car seized for having no current licence.

    The DVLA said they have 52,000 court cases a month notified to them. They then said there are 330 courts therefore 'over 1.7 million convictions would have to be checked' and this would not be 'reasonable' to expect of the them.
    Totally ignoring the fact that they have multiplied the national court cases by the 330 courts again. I still think a DB is more than capable of checking vast numbers of digital records once a month.

    I just need an 'expert' to state the above in an e-mail which I can show the judge to proof there is merit in my appeal and I can dig further to prepare for a later appeal trial.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    12,592
    While I sympathize with you, my knowledge of the court system in the U.S. leads me to doubt whether such a letter would be admissible as evidence, and not simply branded "hearsay" since the writer of the letter is not available for cross-examination.

    I think you strategy should be to play the DVLA off against Her Majesties Court Service, where this is presumably being tried. If you can lead the HMCS to believe that the DVLA is treating its orders with contempt or handling its decisions carelessly, then the court may sway your direction.
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    4

    Judge made me put them on the same side.

    Hi,
    Thanks for the input, I agree that the DVLA are at fault and they should take more care of the orders of the court.

    Unfortunately a judge in an early directions hearing told me to make HMCS a co-defendant in the case, suggesting that since one claimed to have sent the information and one claimed not to have received the information then they both are liable unless one could prove the other failed.

    Hence it is little old me against two very large and powerful agencies of the Government of the UK.

    With regards to the admissability of an expert e-mail, I agree that in full trial this would not be acceptable without it being accepted by the other side without cross examination. My use of it at this stage is in an ex-parte oral hearing of my application for leave to appeal.

    So it is just me and a Judge discussing the merit of my application for appeal, I am hoping to just show some of the potential armoury of truth I will have at my disposal when it comes to the appeal trial.

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