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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I have just received a court summons with the offence 'On

Customer Question

Hello,
I have just received a court summons with the offence 'On 16/3/16 used a colour television receiver without a licence at the above address. Contrary to Section 363 (4) and (2) of the communications Act 2013.
The evidence provided is an paper notes interview the tv licensing worker completed whilst stood at my front door back in March. During this interview he asked if I have a tv and what channels I used. I said Yes, and the I use netflix, amazon prime and sky go to stream catch up tv therefore I do not need a TV licence.
He took this as a confession as SkyGo has the option to watch live TV, and that this was enough proof that I use it and said that I have to pay for the TV licence now and the I can delete the skyGo app and cancel my TV licence online after. So I paid and he left.
Now I don't use it the live tv option on the SkyGO app which I explained to him many time, and SkyGo is one of the listed Catch up services a TV licence is not needed for on the TV license website (which I did not know at the time of the interview). So I cancelled the TV licence as planned and that was the end of it.
The summons came through over the weekend and the paper interview is full of lies. It States that I admitted to watching channels through Sky. It also states that I refused him entry to inspect the TV, he never asked to view the set.. There would have been no problem. And then it also states that I refused to sign the document, but I was never even asked to.
Now I'm not guilty as I do not watch live TV channels only subscription services and minimal catchup. But what do I do?
I won't be able to prove he didn't ask to come in and for me sign the document and that at no point did I admit to watching live channels. IF he has asked me to sign I would have highlighted the lies instead. Any help would be appreciated.
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 months ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you.

What is it you want to achieve please?
Ash

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
I want to achieve a not guilty outcome. I would like to know if the witness statement provided by the TV licensing worker is enough to find me guilty.I do not want to plea guilty for something I have not done, but the risk of higher penalties is a worry if I am found guilty after pleading not guilty.
Expert:  Ash replied 3 months ago.

No - they have to prove you were watching a TV or device as such.

If they can not then you are not guilty. Just to be clear you cant watch things like BBC catchup, ITV player etc on your device.

Sky on demand on the device is different. This is because unless its allows live streaming you are ok.

Just to be clear you can watch Netflix etc without a TV licence. But you cant have a device that can receive TV or catchup etc.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
This is a guess where the grey area is then, as SkyGo does allow live streaming, we just don't use it.This is taken from the tv licensing website -****
If you only ever watch on demand programmes, you don’t need a TV Licence. On demand includes:
catch-up TV;
streaming or downloading programmes after they’ve been shown on live TV; or
programmes available online before being shown on live TV.Services that provide on demand or catch-up include: BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All 4, Sky Go, Virgin Media, BT Vision, Apple TV, Now TV, YouTube, Roku and Amazon Instant Video.***The SkyGo app does allow live streaming, as does BBC Iplayer, ITV hub and now tv but they are listed as apps that a TV license is not needed to use.Does it still stand that they have to prove that I use the live streaming service on SkyGo or is it the opposite of the statement on the website and if you have SkyGo installed the assumption is the live streaming service is used?
Expert:  Ash replied 3 months ago.

Yes they have to PROVE this - it is NOT for your to disprove.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
To be honest I'm more confused now...You said""Just to be clear you cant watch things like BBC catchup, ITV player etc on your device.Sky on demand on the device is different. This is because unless its allows live streaming you are ok.Just to be clear you can watch Netflix etc without a TV licence. But you cant have a device that can receive TV or catchup etc.""If we base the result on the above then I am guilty as I do use catch up via SkyGo and SkyGo does allow live streaming.But if we base it on what is says on the TV licensing website I am not guilty as at no point do I watch or record live TV.
Expert:  Ash replied 3 months ago.

If you dont watch live TV then you are ok.

They need to show you do.

Does that clarify?

Expert:  Ash replied 3 months ago.

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