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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71136
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Dear Sir/Madam I received a parking charge notice for allegedly

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Dear Sir/Madam
I received a parking charge notice for allegedly "not displaying a valid ticket".
The photographic evidence shows time of entry and exit of my car and I agree, I was parked there at that time, but did buy a ticket, actually paying more than was necessary as I did not have the relevant change. As I regularly use the car park concerned, display the ticket on my dash board and remove it to the door pocket on leaving, I still have the ticket.
The parking company have now pointed out that the registration number on the ticket just shows as z (the last number in my registration) and this is why I was in breach of their terms and conditions.
I park here regularly and always input my full registration number. The number was not fully printed on this occasion and I can only assume that the machine was faulty and I didn't notice at the time. Obviously I cannot prove this, but, surely it is a possibility? Should I be penalised for paying more than the correct charge and not checking my registration details?
I would appreciate your advice as, if I do appeal and lose, I will have to pay an increased amount.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
What would you like to know about this please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The appeals POPLA is not available for information until 5th Jan. I will need to pay the charge before 1st Jan or the cost will increase. I really would like to know my chances of winning the appeal

Have you appealed to POPLA already? If not, please don't.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No I just sent an email for advice and their auto response said they were closed until 5th Jan. Does this mean you don't think I have a case?

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.
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