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Dyfed Powys Magistrates 21st March 2013 Confidential.

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Presentation on theme: "Dyfed Powys Magistrates 21st March 2013 Confidential."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dyfed Powys Magistrates 21st March 2013 Confidential

2 What will todays presentation cover? A summary of our work The prosecution process The local picture An opportunity to ask questions

3 What is TV Licensing? TV Licensing is a trade mark used by agents contracted by the BBC to administer the collection of TV Licence fees and enforcement of the TV Licensing system Capita manages prosecutions, call centres and the field force iQor administer TV Licensings cash payment schemes, including call centres Administration and collection of TV Licence fee Enforcement of TV Licensing system Help for those who need a licence, provision of information and payment methods to suit all Prosecution: a last resort against those who evade paying the licence fee

4 Did you know? A colour TV Licence costs £145.50; a black and white licence costs £49 You need a TV Licence if you watch or record programmes as they are being shown on TV The law is the same regardless of the technology used: laptop, mobile phone, iPad Around 97% of households own a TV The vast majority are correctly licensed - only 5.2% evade the Licence Fee 30% of those prosecuted last year were found to have satellite or cable subscriptions when their property was checked Some facts

5 Did you know? People aged 75 or over qualify for a free licence Blind and severely sight impaired people qualify for a 50% concession The Accommodation for Residential Care (ARC) Licence costs £7.50 a year and allows certain residents who live in homes qualifying for the scheme to install and use TV receiving equipment in their unit of accommodation TV is as popular as ever with people watching more than ever before Some more facts

6 How people pay 70.2% Pay by Direct Debit 9.5% Pay by Credit / Debit card 8.0% Pay by Payment Card 5.9% Pay by PayPoint 2.2% Pay by Savings Card 0.2% Pay by home banking 0.1% Pay at Post Office on Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man All figures are for 2011/12 financial year

7 Helping people to pay The Payment Card helps people spread the cost of their TV Licence Pay online, over the phone or by text message There are 23,000 PayPoint outlets – currently 1.5m people choose to make payments in this way Check account status, payment schedule and arrears online or via our automated telephone service TV Licensing sends over 60,000 text message reminders each month to Payment Card members who have opted into the service 70,000 new members join the scheme each month, but year on year growth is just 60,000

8 Working with stakeholders TV Licensing works with third parties to provide information through the legal system and a range of stakeholder organisations including: Citizens Advice Institute of Money Advisers Age UK RNIB Mencap National Union of Students Federation of Small Businesses And not just national organisations. We also work with regional and local organisations such as: Citizens Advice Bureaux Councils and housing associations

9 Speaking your language TV Licensing provides a range of information in foreign languages There are: 16 languages available on 180 languages available via our telephone translation service We also distribute leaflets to community organisations in 18 languages

10 Who are evaders? ABMiddle class and above: doctors, architects, lawyers, senior managers C1Lower middle class: middle management, policemen C2Skilled working class: nurses, salesmen, publicans DWorking class: manual workers E Lowest subsistence level: state pensioners, casual workers, unemployed According to BARB (Broadcasters Audience Research Board) around 97% of households currently own TVs E AB D C2 C1 EAB D C2 C1 Social grade distribution of properties needing a licence – licensable base Social grade distribution of unlicensed properties

11 20 weeks to avoid court for 1st time evaders Address is shown as unlicensed on TV Licensing database Individual advised to buy a licence and informed of the payment options TV Licensing monitors the database to see if a licence has been purchased Repeat evaders are prosecuted with no further letters TV Licensing will apply to withdraw prosecution where first time offenders purchase a licence An interview conducted under caution when evasion is suspected Reminder letters sent, telephone contact may also be attempted If no response, an enquiry officer visits First-time evaders may avoid prosecution if they purchase a licence immediately The general rule: no prosecution for first-time evaders who subsequently buy a TV Licence and keep up payments The enforcement process

12 A popular excuse Many evaders claim that an enquiry officer told them they would not be prosecuted if they bought a licence It is a disciplinary offence for an enquiry officer to say or suggest this The Record of Interview clearly states: Please note: the enquiry officer who conducted this interview does not have the authority to give you time to pay. Even if you purchase the appropriate licence, you may still be prosecuted for the offence. If you pay for your licence in instalments, you must ensure that your payments are kept up to date. I have been told that it is in my own interest to obtain a TV Licence although I may still be prosecuted for any unlicensed use. And (by the signature line):

13 Our prosecution policy TV Licensing policy is based on the code for Crown Prosecutors A decision to prosecute is taken by the Court Administrator, treating each case on its individual merits Each decision must satisfy both evidential and public interest tests Public interest is rarely served by prosecuting: Genuine babysitters Seriously ill, disabled or otherwise mentally incapacitated TV Licensing prosecutes those with a black and white licence who have a colour TV

14 The regional picture From March 2012 to November 2012 there was an estimated £1,376,576 in potential lost revenue due to licence fee evasion in the Dyfed Powys area. Around 441 evaders were caught TV Licensing prosecuted c. 185 evaders

15 Dyfed Powys monthly fines

16 Welsh average fines and costs

17 Thank you! We take on board your feedback and implement changes where possible. This has resulted in: Redesign of the TV Licensing interview form Requests for: –National Insurance numbers –Dates of birth –Telephone numbers Continued cleansing of data Quicker processing of repeat evaders But…what more could we do?

18 Thank you Warren Carr, TV Licensing Campaign Office xxxxxxxxxx, Capita Court Presenter

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