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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 9353
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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My wife has received a county court judgment parking offence

Customer Question

My wife has received a county court judgment for a parking offence which we disputed at the time as we had not parked but dropped someone off at an airport.
We are pensioners and can not afford the amount charged and still dispute the claim.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Was this a charge for literally stopping to drop someone off?

Which airport was it?

Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

My experience is that these appeals always be rejected.

You have no choice therefore but to defend any action the parking company bring.

The best form of defence here is attack. Financially, it is not worth these parking companies going to court and they rely on people just paying up.

The penalty of, for example, £100 is all that they would recover plus any solicitors costs in a fixed fee of about £50 plus the court costs. Altogether, even if they are successful, they would only recover about £200 but, it would cost them a full day in many cases in court.

If this is at airport, although the airport appears to be public land, they are private. There will be sign if you enter the airport system which states that there is no stopping and if you do, you will be charged a fee. The signage must be clear and all the signs which I have seen at airports are not clear enough that a driver who was concentrating on driving would be able to read the wording and know that there was a potential charge for parking. Your defence therefore would be lack of clear signage.

Write back to the parking company telling them that you intend to defend any action they bring and that they should not write to you again but should issue Small Claims Court proceedings without delay. They will rarely do so. If they do, then you will have to defend them.

What you can do is send them a nominal amount of money, perhaps £5 or £10 in a cheque telling them that this is in full final settlement of the matter and that by cashing it they accepted as such and if they don’t accept it they should return it to you.

The reason for sending the cheque is that if they It, that is the end of it and if they go to court, you can raise the cashing of the cheque as evidence of the settlement.

It also draws a line under this sooner rather than later because they actually have six years to issue Small Claims Court proceedings and it’s nice to know when the whole thing has been finished which it would be if they cashed the cheque.

Can I clarify anything for you?

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Best wishes.


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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I can only apologise for the perceived lack of a return mail, reason is unknown.
However I would like to clarify a little more with regard to the driver at the time of the incident.
I was driving but since the vehicle is registered in my wife's name, she has received the order,
I am main driver since my wife is disabled, does this mean anything?
I think your advice is great thank you and I will respond after this small clarification.Many thanks and kind regardsMatt
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Unfortunately, whereas before 2012 you could have ignored these and simply said “contact the driver” but not said who the driver was, since the Protection of Freedoms Act these are bizarrely enforceable against the registered keeper. It’s the only piece of legislation I am aware where someone who has not committed an offence or been party to a contract is liable.

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