Why we're here:
This blog is to highlight the unjust persecution of legitimate non-TV users at the hands of TV Licensing. These people do not require a licence and are entitled to live without the unnecessary stress and inconvenience caused by TV Licensing's correspondence and employees.

If you use equipment to receive live broadcast TV programmes, or to watch or download on-demand programmes via the BBC iPlayer, then the law requires you to have a licence and we encourage you to buy one.

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Sunday, 19 August 2012

TV Licensing Penalising the Poor

Yesterday we gave a no holds barred account of how TV Licensing was meting out its own style of "justice" on some of the most vulnerable people in society.

Of the two dozen court cases we considered at least half of the defendants were in receipt of benefits and struggling to make ends meet. That pattern is replicated across the land, as TV Licensing employees invariably catch a higher proportion of the unemployed, disabled people and single parents at home alone during their daytime visits.

The Express published an article today, which highlights a second way TV Licensing are penalising the poor. It explains how those paying for their TV licence monthly by Direct Debit are forced to pay half the annual fee, around £70, upfront. The surcharge only applies to the less wealthy, however, since those who can afford to pay the £145.50 fee in full are not penalised.

The article explains: "Like a deposit on a rented flat, it is not returned until the viewers quit their contract by deciding they want to stop watching tele­vision altogether.

"Data uncovered through a Freedom of Information request shows that the extra £1billion stays in a Government-run Consolidated Fund account, from which the BBC receives a monthly grant."

A full report into the scandal is due to be published by consumer watchdog Which? next week.

Earlier this year the Telegraph, following our lead, explained how the BBC was coining in millions in extra revenue by backdating licences to the start of the month they were issued. Under current arrangements a licence bought on 31st August 2012 will be backdated to 1st August 2012 and expire on 31st July 2013, which means a person is paying the full annual cost for only 11 months of licence. 

If they pay by Direct Debit they could be getting ripped off twice by the BBC!

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