Thousands of people are blocking TV Licence enforcers

24 March 2014

Gone are the days when you used to hide from the TV Licence van, gibbering with fear. Now savvy non-payers are exploiting a legal loophole which means they can stop TV Licence people from entering their properties and threaten to sue them if they visit again.
TV licence

According to a Freedom of Information request, over 7000 people are thought to have contacted the BBC to withdraw access to TV licence enforcers. Bascially, TV Licence bods can’t arrest you, and they can’t demand access to your property to check out your claim that honestly guv, you don’t own a telly, you just watch iPlayer on your laptop, yeah?

And that’s not the only problem that the BBC faces. Tory MP Mark Bridgen is leading a debate in the House of Commons tomorrow which would decriminalize non payment of the licence fee in 2016. Bridgen growled: ‘It is clear that a large proportion of the public resent the BBC’s heavy-handed way of collecting the fee.’

But if the licence fee fails, then what will become of the BBC? Well, the Tories don’t give a monkeys. They really won’t be happy until they’re dancing on its grave, holding a burning effigy of Jimmy Savile.

TOPICS:   Consumer Advice   TV

24 comments

  • Ells
    or could it just be that like me lots of folks have given up on TV...four years without it and haven't missed a thing. Yes I have written to tell them I have no TV, however, they are welcome to come and check anytime.
  • The T.
    This article implies that in order to be prosecuted, you need to have a TV. This is not the case. The law states that without a TV license, it is an offence to watch or record live TV, as it is being broadcast, on any device. It doesn't matter what device you use. You can have dozens of TV's in your property but if you don't watch live TV, you are not committing an offence. Removing their implied rights of access stops them from visiting you, although it still doesn't always stop them from trying. Unfortunately CAPITA who are acting on behalf of TV licensing use intimidation, threats, bullying and other tricks against the many innocent householders who chose not to watch live TV. You are guilty until proven innocent in their eyes.
  • The T.
    This article also implies that TV license agents have the legal powers to arrest you. This is complete rubbish. They have NO legal powers whatsoever and you have NO obligation whatsoever to let them in or even speak to them, although they'll use language to suggest otherwise. The only scenario where they can enter your property is if they have a valid search warrant. Of which they'll threaten you with, I've experience of this first hand along with lots of others - have a search on YouTube...
  • Clive h.
    Hooray, it's about time the tables were turned. Before we could not even pay for a Black & White license without interrogation. It really had gone too far with threats of all kinds. Now we can watch the box on the internet & to blazes with the BBC.
  • "Me"
    Good Aprils 1st joke. Still too early... Telling that on the 21st century people pay license for watching TV? LOL
  • Gordon E.
    Abolish the licence fee.
  • HowDareYouBlockMyComments
    @The Truth. You misread the article: "Bascially (sic), TV Licence bods can’t arrest you".
  • Alexis
    It's not actually a legal loophole at all. They need evidence and the only way they can get it is to get you to sign a bit of paper. It's like saying closing your front door is a loophole. Crapita spend their days sending out thousands of templated letters every month and tricking the unwary into signing their own declarations of guilt. Simply ignore them. You only get prosecuted if you're daft enough to let them in or sign what they tell you to. By the way, withdrawing impied access turned out to be stupid because they then actually turn up. Staying under the radar is much better.
  • Ian
    Cancelled my TV license months ago. Feels great to not be funding the BBC's underground paedophile ring, and not financing Mark Lawrenson's all-expenses-paid trips to ruin football matches for those who aren't being paid to watch them, with his constant moaning.
  • License L.
    I don't have a TV license, haven't had one for years. I pay for Sky and I stream. The licensing system is an out dated concept, if the BBC wants funds, advertise like all the other channels do....
  • Michele M.
    In theory , it is important to keep the BBC going with the Licence, but what the Government has to take into consideration now in the present economic climate, is that people in the UK are starving! Yes, starving ! Struggling trying to juggle the bills with their every decreasing wage ! So they can not afford the Licence, what then? Well they cannot OPT out of the BBC, they cannot just switch their TV off until things get better ! NO ! so they have no choice than to break the Law, which then more often than not will , ( guess what?) FINE them ! what a joke ! They have no money to pay ! So what then ? Jail ! FANTASTIC so in the UK we will lock up people for being POOR ! Well done UK
  • snitch
    When the need for TV sales shops to report any equipment sold went, the TV licence became a 'best guess' business. It won't last much longer in its current form; the BBC would be best off swapping to a monthly subscription and 'paid for' downloads on the iPlayer. I too got rid of Sky and the licence two years ago and its made no difference to what we watch.
  • LegoBatman
    Times are changing and the BBC needs to keep up. I notice that BBC worldwide never gets dragged into this. The fact that they make massive revenue out of DVD sales and the funds never get back to the BBC?!? Chill n' Flex.
  • paul
    So, do you only need a licience to watch or record only BBC? So am i right in saying i can watch and record ALL other channels without a licence. This would mean i need a tv and an aerial to do so. I dont see how the BBC can prove you are watching or recording their live programs. I guess anyone can disclose to the licencing pepole that they do not watch it and even if they did, without letting them into your home, they cannot prove a thing.
  • _Me_
    Paul, you need a licence to watch all live TV. That includes Sky, ITV and whatever (despite what the idiot above thinks). Those who are moaning about Capita clearly don't remember Busby and his vans, hiding round the corner and then turning up with 2 big fellas, demanding to get in the door. Capita are pussies compared with that lot. But hey, outsourcing is a great stick to beat the Government with (I don't work for Capita either)
  • LegoBatman
    @_ME_ Wtf are you on about? Busby was part of BT advertising not the BBC. Chill n' Flex.
  • no l.
    not legal loophole,lawful right
  • Mickey M.
    Michele McLintock are you taking the piss? Sarcasm is harder to detect online
  • adams
    Exploiting? It's not exploiting. It's the law. They are using their RIGHTS under common law, that a man/woman castle is their home, and that shouldn't be invaded. It's a statury law too, not some loophole. When ordinary people use law, it's a loophole. When corporations, especially kangaroo magistrates courts use it, it's law. Media, playing with words. It's LAWFUL RIGHT!
  • Anthony S.
    Approximately 2 years ago, I wrote to the TV licencing authority to tell them I no longer had a TV and wanted a refund of the unexpired portion of my licence.  They wanted a final utility bill or a death certificate.  I pointed out I had not moved and was not dead, I just don't want to watch tv.They eventually gave me my refund, but now they are hassling me to confirm I still don't have a tv. You opt in to this tax, not opt out, and I've had all the usual threats, but they won't get in!!!!Approximately 2 years ago, I wrote to the TV licencing authority to tell them I no longer had a TV and wanted a refund of the unexpired portion of my licence.  They wanted a final utility bill or a death certificate.  I pointed out I had not moved and was not dead, I just don't want to watch tv.They eventually gave me my refund, but now they are hassling me to confirm I still don't have a tv. You opt in to this tax, not opt out, and I've had all the usual threats, but they won't get in!!!!
  • john m.
    Demanding money with menaces is a serious crime!! Why do the BBC have the rite wen anyone else would get life!! Lol
  • Paul
    I got rid of the TV a while ago. The TVL letters continue, the latest said they're starting "a full investigation", oooh. I kind of hope they come round and I can give them the runaround by not giving ANY answers other than I dont have a TV. I expect if everyone in my position did this it would significantly put the enforcer workload up, but provide no resulting prosecutions to fund it. Passive resistance.
  • Andrew D.
    He does not pay his either https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WrH0O9QGOuY
  • Theresa L.
    Why do we still have the TV Licence? It's should of been banned along time ago! The BBC has no moral high ground. It was a green house for paedophile rings, which ruined alot of innocent lives. TV Licence monies paid for the likes of Jimmy Savile and his companions and good old 'Auntie' not only covered up and protected these vile perpetrators, it helped feed their depraved and sorded lives. The BBC still run clips of Jimmy Savile, there is not thought or feeling for the lives that were ruined by this Savage. The British Public should NOT have to support this Institute of Self Imposed Importance. The BBC has not moral back bone, take away the Licence funding and it will collapse.

What do you think?

Connect with Facebook, Twitter, or just enter your email to sign in and comment.

Your comment