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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70719
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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On 28th August I took my daughter and grandson to John Lennon

Resolved Question:

On 28th August I took my daughter and grandson to John Lennon airport for their flight. As I cannot manage automated barriers due to a shoulder injury (a break) that didn't heal properly I now have limited movement in the right shoulder. So stopped just after the roundabout. I didn't turn off the engine, and they just go out, got the case out and I went. Weeks later I received a parking fine via letter saying I was breechingthe terms and conditions of the Privately Operated Access Roads to Liverpool John Lennon Airport. I wasn't aware that they were private. I am now being asked to pay 100 pounds, as I took no notice of the origional letter. The first letter had a moble cctv picture of me stopping, but not the fact that I was only stopped for a matter of minutes. I would ba happy if you could advise me on what to do. I have been threatened with appointed debt recovery agents.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Hi.

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this. Were there clear signs advising of the parking rules and tariffs?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I could not say for definite . I didn't see them or I would not have stopped.I did not park in the car park or stop in the car park,

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Thanks.

Who is the issuer of this fine? It will be on the letters.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Vehicle Control Services Ltd. the only thing mentioned on the letters.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Yes, thats a private land fine.

What was the date of issue please?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

the PCN No is VCO2735990 I cannot put my hand on the origional letter at the moment, but it was around the 30th September. This letter is dated 1/11/2013

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Thanks.

This is a private land fine. They are not parking fines whatever they may look like. I realise that many of them mimic those issued by the council or the police but they do not have the same authority.

A private land firm is not an emanation of the state. It does not have the right to punish you for the manner of your parking any more than your neighbours do.

This is essentially an invoice arising from a civil dispute. They say that you accepted a contract by parking there and breached it by staying too long or otherwise parking at variance with the contract.

Private land fines used to be very easy to escape by refusing the details of the driver. They only have a contract with the driver. Unfortunately the Protection of Freedoms Act came into force in October 2012 and it makes the registered keeper liable for the penalty if he does not disclose the details of the driver within 28 days.

All that means is that the claim runs against the registered keeper. It just makes it easier to find the person against whom there should be enforcement.

The chances are high that they will not sue. Even though the law has recently changed in their favour and they were quite aggressive in the beginning, they do not sue in the majority of cases.

If they do sue then they would only have a claim for the sum of the original fine plus about £35 in costs. They will send you debt collection letters in which they will threaten to sue you for their debt collection costs. Do not be intimidated by that. They have no claim for that.

Even if they do go to court, they would still have to prove that the signs are adequate and clear. Quite often they are not.

Also, they will have to prove that they have suffered loss. They may be able to claim a very small amount in administration costs but it is going to be the sum they are trying to claim from you. Their loss would seem to amount to no more than about £5.

They will send you some very nasty letters though. You will get debt collection letters making threats of legal action. They will probably get Graham Whyte solicitors to write to you as well. None of these are anything to worry about. It will not impact upon your credit history and it will not add to the costs.

Unless you actually get a court summons, none of these correspondences have any legal basis. If you do get a court summons then you can always part admit the claim and offer £5 for their loss.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you so much for advising me .I had actually been told that, but having been worried about it I saw the advert, and decided to ask for legal advice, Your service was exceptionally good so once again thank you.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
No problem and all the best.

Remember that I am always available to help with your questions. Even if I am in Court I will usually pick up a question within 12 hours. For future information, please start your question with ‘For Jo C’.