How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Jo C. Your Own Question
Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71039
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
Type Your Law Question Here...
Jo C. is online now

I have received a letter from Miah Solicitors on behalf of

This answer was rated:

I have received a letter from Miah Solicitors on behalf of their clients UKCPS!!
I over parked and went over the bay I was parked in last May 2014 in a local shopping centre which incidentally is free. I never realised until I got home they had stuck a ticket on my car, that day was particularly dreadful, lashing down with rain with very poor visibility. I had parked there numerous times before which was not run by UKCPS so never gave any thought that the car park was now run by them
I was furious, as I was only there for 5-10 mins
I never challenged the ticket and thought no more about it, then another demand arrived some weeks later. Talking to various people the general consensus was do nothing, which I did. Now 11 months down the line their solicitors are on the chase.
Do I have a leg to stand on ? Should I accept that I have made a bad decision and pay up ,they are demanding £275 to be paid by 5th May 2015.
I welcome and be very very grateful for your advice.
Yours. Mark
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 2 years ago.

I would like advise on which way to proceed as I feel £275 is very excessive and unfair. What revenue have they lost? as its a free car park.

I never saw the signage that was up, and had no idea it had been taken

over by UKCPS

the issue isn't really lost revenue. There is a good deal of nonsense upon the Internet on topics like this.
Do you accept that you were not parked within the white lines?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I do remember I did over park as there was plenty of free spaces in the car park that day. I am tired of getting dints in my car doors, I no thats a a lame excuse.

Sorry, am I missing the point? The allegation here is that you parked over the white lines?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Yes Jo I did, went over the white line into another parking space

Thank you.
There is a good deal of nonsense on the Internet on the topic of private land fining. Whatever these sites tell people, these fines can be enforced and are lawful.
What they are though is very difficult to enforce. It isn't really cost effective for them to start suing people and so generally speaking people escape without paying them. That is not to say that they could not sue or that they will not but the chances are fairly high on the side of the motorist.
This particular claim is brought on the basis that you park their at variance with the terms of the contract. To get home on that claim they will have to show that there were signs that were visible and that the contract upon those signs clearly prohibited exceeding the white line.
The issue of loss may become a factor depending upon what the signs say. If they quote a specific sum then it is arguable that that is the sum that is due under the contract rather than to represent their actual loss.
The reason they are claiming the amount that they are is that they are trying to recover from you their debt collection costs which they would not get in courts. If they went to court they would get the sum of the original parking fine plus about £35 in costs and fixed solicitors costs of roughly £55.
Whether you should pay depends upon your appetite for risk. Personally I would never pay one of these invoices but then receiving letters of this nature doesn't bother me. All you might want to consider is that the fact that they have written to you does not mean they intend to sue. Solicitor send out letters before action all the time and it does not mean that their clients are intent upon suing.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Should I then do nothing, and wait and see what happens and not get into any dialogue with their solicitors or them ( UKCPS) and play innocentCry

I would do nothing. I would just ignore them.
Depending upon how much risk you want to take you could write back asking them to prove that their signs cover this prohibition. You might want to get photographs of the signs before you do that so that they don't miraculously change. In truth though, the only reason I sometimes do that is to annoy them. It serves no other useful purpose.
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you