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Hello, this is Jim and welcome to JustAnswer. I will be the lawyer working with you today.Sorry to hear of the issue. I will set out my written answer shortly.
A parking fine results from breach of contract. If someone uses a parking area which is subject to charges, you enter in to a contract when you enter the car park area. If you do not pay, or do but over-stay, they are entitled to fine you. You say you saw a pay and display sign in place - you allegedly overstayed by 25 minutes, which is the breach of contract they will rely upon. You could argue against it - I note your arguments and I cannot say whether those would curry favour with a civil court judge or not. I would say it's a case of 50/50 whether a judge would think your conduct was reasonable or not as the case may be. Nothing is guaranteed in litigation - it would be a small claim so there is no real risk of any costs if you lose. You could defend the claim and it would take several months - if you lost you still get 30 days to pay before it ends up on your credit record. You could make them an offer to settle - they are unlikely to want to issue a claim at court over this sum of money. You have no further right to pay the extra £1.20 as the breach of contract has already occurred which triggers their right to fine you unfortunately. There is no harm in communicating with them and perhaps making an offer to settle, to avoid having to go through the small cliams process.
I hope this helps and answers the question - my goal is to ensure you are happy with the answer and have the information you need. If you have any follow up questions then please let me know. I will reply as soon as I can to help with any further queries.
Please let me know if the answer helped or if you need me to cover anything else?. I am happy to clarify the answer or if you have any follow up questions. If so, I’d be grateful if you would let me know. I am free most days, including weekends, so feel free to ask me anything you are unsure of.
No problem, many thanks