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Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 15 years experience.
I am sorry to read of the above. May I confirm if they have supplied evidence that you were parked outside of a marked bay - e.g. a photo - or whether you have formally accepted that you were so parked?
Many thanks. The law and rules for parking in private car parks are based on the formation of a contract between you and the car park owner. This is achieved by the owner erecting signs which are numerous and clear enough to reasonably bring the attention of a person parking there to them. i.e. it would not be sufficient for a single sign to be erected in a far corner of a car park, but equally it is not necessary to put a sign in ever car parking space.
If you accept that there are signs which clearly state you must park wholly within a marked bay then this would typically be accepted by a court as being part of the contract conditions you agree when parking. You say that you have a letter from them than they sent the pass with that restates some of those rules but not all. That does give you a case to argue that you had reasonably believed those rules constituted the entire parking agreement and your attention had not been drawn to any signs in the car park. This defence relies upon the discretion and judgement of a judge if it was bought before court, so there is no certainty as to the outcome of raising such defence. If the letter makes reference to further conditions by way of signage for example, this would significantly weaken such a defence, but by contrast if it sets out a number of rules and makes no reference to further rules, this could form a defence as above. My view would be at the same time the extent to which you were parked outside a bay is likely to be a further factor that would be considered as it is considered common good practice/manners to park within bays. If the offence is trivial this should not overly count against you but if you were parked signficantly outside the bay, this may count against you when a judge weighs a defence you raise as above.
In terms of ignoring the demands - this is a matter for you. Certainly the parking company cannot do anything except take you to court if you refuse to pay. Your calculation therefore will either be to ignore the demands in the hope that they do not issue proceedings in court, or if they do that you consider you have a defence as above, as against paying what is demanded to avoid the risk of court and the additional court fees that will apply on top of the demand. If there is anything else I can help with please reply back to me
I'm glad it was of some assistance