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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70519
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I received a parking fine as in a car park the only available

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I received a parking fine as in a car park the only available spaces my car wouldn't fit in - or if it did - I couldn't get out of the cars either side would not be able to get in. I parked in a non-space - which was safe and still paid for my ticket. I took a photo of the space showing my car wouldn't fit in - and appealed. They wrote back after sending to my old address with the fine now increasing to £135 and said ' As terms and conditions on the sign state ' all vehicles must be parked within a marked bay' I still have to pay. I am cross as I had no option apart leave the car park and miss my train. this feels really unfair - what should I do?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hello, were there no other car parks available nearby?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
No none - it was at Whittlesford Station SP - the train line into London.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Who is the issuer please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi - The car park was NCP now has been passed to ZZPS Ltd. - Parking services.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Does the small print mention the local council ?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
No - it jsut says' If at teh end of the period of 21 days beginning with the day after the date on which this notice to Hirer is givien, you have not compllied with the above, then your details will be passed to our Debt Collection Agent who will seek to reciver from you, the amount still outstanding as well as debt collectors fee's '
on How to make Representations againt the PCN
Once your representation is received, your case will be places on hold and we will send a response in writing within 35 days . If we reject your representation then we will send you information on how to appeal to the independent adjudication service: Parking on Private Land Appeals ( POPLA). please see www.popla.rog.uk.the letter I received just says my parking charge still stands at £135 and must pay it - no advice.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Ok. I'm out at court right now but if you can give me until lunchtime I will tell you your options.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi - I am still waiting to hear what action I need to take ?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
I'm sorry, I did respond to this. I don't know why it didn't upload.
I will type it up again now.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year 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 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.
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi - thanks for this - I have now had a threatening solicitor letter from Wright Hassall LLP - I am still prepared to dispute this as I paid for my parking but could not fit my car into any spaces. And tried to correspond with them straight away. Do I need to reply to this solicitor or wait to get a CCJ ?
Thanks
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Are you prepared to risk going to court?
I will be happy to continue with this but please rate my original answer.