How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Jo C. Your Own Question
Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71056
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
Type Your Law Question Here...
Jo C. is online now

I have used an oyster card on the bus (in London, TFL) that

This answer was rated:

I have used an oyster card on the bus (in London, TFL) that was not mine. It was unknowingly a discounted student oyster card, that of my roommate. I was stopped by an inspector on the bus, and have now been asked to appear in court. The forms they have sent me in the mail apropos my hearing explain that this offence will appear on my record. Will this appear on my record for an extended period of time, or might this be erased after some time? Also, I am looking for free legal advice, but the citizen's bureaus I have approached cannot offer any help in regard to Transport for London. Is there a way I can settle the case out of court? If not, how do I get legal representation?
Thank you
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
You cannot get free representation I'm afraid. This isn't covered by legal aid. The only options are to self represent or to pay privately.
You can make an offer to settle out of court. They do sometimes accept them. I have to say I don't know on what basis that they think they can accept them since this is a criminal prosecution but they regularly do.
In terms of your record, this is a TFL prosecution so it will not be on PNC. It may still show though on your DBS check. You will be fined so it will be spent after one year which will mean it will not show on basic checking after that time.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your help in this matter.

If I must appear in court without a legal representative, what do you recommend I say?

I was unaware that the oyster card was a discounted student card when I used it. Will it make any difference if I emphasize this in court?

Not particularly. Come what may, it wasn't yours and that is the issue.
Usually it is just a matter of expressing remorse and emphasising your hitherto good character.