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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69255
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Wondering if you can help me? I received a parking

Customer Question

Wondering if you can help me?
I received a parking ticket for parking at a retail park which I did not know I was only meant to stay there for 2 hours but the letter states 2hrs 31Mins. The parking ticket also states that this is private land from a Company called G24 Ltd was are meant to be a accredited Operator of the IPC (Independent Parking Committee.
What would you advice me of my next step?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
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 arising from an alleged agreement whereby you agree to park for a fee. 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. That is what is in dispute.
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.
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.
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 a small amount for their loss.
Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

So do you recommend to write to them stating that this is not legally enforced and parking tickets can only enforced by a the police or local authority.

I hope you will disreguard the matter, which in future I should not receive any more correspondence from you (I.E. IPC).

What do you think?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
No. That will be a red rag to a bull.
Just ignore them.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

what do I do if debt collect

er come to the door?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
They are not allowed to come to the door unless there is a court order.
All they will do is phone and write.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Even in Scotland?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
The only difference in Scotland is that the Protection of Freedoms Act is not in force.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Do you think they will bring it to court?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
It is quite unlikely that they would. They could but they do not generally.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69255
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

I went to the car park and it has 2 different signs. One stating 120mins 90 pounds and the other 90mins for 100 pounds.

Will this help my case?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Generally speaking, confusion amongst their own signing can only be positive.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I took photos just incase it goes to court? Will this help me?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
It will mean that they cannot change the signs.

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