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hot wheels

Original Poster:

139 posts

150 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
i'm bloody angry
parked up last night(8.30) in manchester opposite the comedy store in a side street there were no official parking notices or yellow lines just one of those private clamping signs
I've come back to the car and theres a parking ticket on it but from a private company
The fine is 70.00 rising to 110 in seven days and there is just a premium rate number to complain about it.
Is this legal and enforcable? it seems like a scam to me as i'm sure in every normal respect i was legally parked

joust

14,604 posts

139 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
If the street was privatly owned, and the signs were clear, then yes, it's "legal".

However, if it was a public road and you were parked, legally, on the road, then it's probably unenforcable (there was a case recently on TV of a private firm patroling Reading Station on a public road around a station giving out tickets for "illegal waiting").

The government is trying to clear the thing up..

If you fancy a fight, check out

www.parkingticket.co.uk/ca.html - section 3.
www.libdems.org.uk/commerce/parliamentaryreport.html?id=4539
www.abd.org.uk/parking.htm

Good luck!

J

hot wheels

Original Poster:

139 posts

150 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
thanks for that it looks like its the same firm thats mentioned in the articles "Excel parking" from sheffield, i'll certainly be looking into this and if theres any chance of a fight i'll take it. I hate buracratic bullies and i wasnt aware this was a private rd and at seventy pounds its almost double the normal fine
the premium rate number to complain is a scam as well

RR-Eng

2,522 posts

113 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
In this case I would not bother paying the fine, here is why.

If they want to pursue you they would then have to request get your details from the DVLA, send you some form of threatening letter, then if you refuse to pay up they would then have to take you to court.

They are looking at trying to prove that they have some form of contract with you and it is not clear cut if they do.

Parking penalties work on the principle of an implied contract. By reading the sign you are therefore agreeing to be bound by the terms of the contract if you park your car there.

Sounds simply but of course it isn't. Firstly they have to prove that you saw the sign and that an average person would be able to understand the terms of the contract.

Additionally the contract would have to be fair and to UK law. You couldn't for example charge 1million for parking on somebody's land.

In your case you could reasonably claim that as the road was a side street it was not obvious that the road in question was private one as there was no road markings or large sign saying "private road".

So there is already a legal argument there, there is also an argument if the fines themselves are not set on the sign.

Basically the long and short of it is that there is not a clear legal argument as to whether or not you are liable for a parking fine and as a result you are banking on the judgement of a judge/magistrate.

This means that in terms of time and hassel it is not worth them pursuing you through the courts.

There will always be someone else willing to pay up without a fight.

As an example the company that were taking photos and billing people for stopping outside a station (the road was private but this was not obvious) had never actually taken somebody to court for none payment of fines.

One of the biggest reasons why they are unlikely to take any none payment of fines to court is that as they are opperating in a very grey area of the law, there is a fair chance that not only could a judge decide that you are not liable for a parking fine but that they cannot leavy fines in this manner from that piece of land.


joust

14,604 posts

139 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
RR-Eng said:
One of the biggest reasons why they are unlikely to take any none payment of fines to court is that as they are opperating in a very grey area of the law, there is a fair chance that not only could a judge decide that you are not liable for a parking fine but that they cannot leavy fines in this manner from that piece of land.
Excellent post - and to add to that, of course if they did take someone to court and lost, there would then be case law making the whole thing unenforcable.

As advised, probably best to just ignore their "bluff and bluster". If you do eventually end up in court, take legal aid to defend it and run the arguments outlined above.

J
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tony.t

927 posts

136 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
RR-Eng said:
In this case I would not bother paying the fine, here is why.

If they want to pursue you they would then have to request get your details from the DVLA, send you some form of threatening letter, then if you refuse to pay up they would then have to take you to court.
It's very easy to obtain your details from the DVLA. The parking company will charge you for any extra work involved which includes obtaining a court date. If thet do obtain a court date you must turn up or they will find in favour of the parking company.
RR-Eng said:

They are looking at trying to prove that they have some form of contract with you and it is not clear cut if they do.

Parking penalties work on the principle of an implied contract. By reading the sign you are therefore agreeing to be bound by the terms of the contract if you park your car there.

Sounds simply but of course it isn't. Firstly they have to prove that you saw the sign and that an average person would be able to understand the terms of the contract.


I'm afraid precedent is established in these cases; Contract is entered into if you park, the sign is clearly placed and the nature of the contract clear to an ordinary person. They do not have to prove you have seen the sign or you personaly understood it. If you fight on this basis you have to be confidant the court won't find the sign unclear in any way.
RR-Eng said:

Additionally the contract would have to be fair and to UK law. You couldn't for example charge 1million for parking on somebody's land.


70 for parking would be seen as reasonable.

RR-Eng said:
as a result you are banking on the judgement of a judge/magistrate.
do you feel lucky?
RR-Eng said:

This means that in terms of time and hassel it is not worth them pursuing you through the courts.
Yes it is as they will charge you "reasonable" fees for the recovery of the parking fine. Many, including the one we use, are offshoots of debt recovery firms and are well versed in court proceedings and making even more money out of non payers. They would rather you go to court as they make more money.

[/quote]

parrot of doom

23,075 posts

114 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
Who owns the side street? If its council property, what right does a private outfit have to fine you?

Ian_s

674 posts

124 months

[news] 
Sunday 17th April 2005 quote quote all
read this, handy info on whether parking fines are legal or not.

www.bwmaonline.com/Legal%20-%20New%20doubts%20-%20Thoburn%20conviction.htm

g_attrill

2,793 posts

126 months

[news] 
Monday 18th April 2005 quote quote all
Ian_s said:
read this, handy info on whether parking fines are legal or not.

www.bwmaonline.com/Legal%20-%20New%20doubts%20-%20Thoburn%20conviction.htm


That's not relevant in this case - that deals with fines issued by a local authority, not private companies.

One question I have on the OP's case - they might get the RK's name/address from the DVLA but how do they prove that the RK was driving at the time, and hence was the person who formed the contract?

Gareth

joust

14,604 posts

139 months

[news] 
Monday 18th April 2005 quote quote all
g_attrill said:

One question I have on the OP's case - they might get the RK's name/address from the DVLA but how do they prove that the RK was driving at the time, and hence was the person who formed the contract?
Gareth
That's why you rarely hear of one of these going to court, even when they have "photographic" evidence.

Clearly the registered keeper is responsible for the car, but, as in speeding tickets, the 'offence' is committed by the person driving at the time.

They would find it hard to enforce a parking ticket against the registered keeper if they couldn't prove beyond reasonable doubt that it was that keeper that left the car there.

As it's contract law, you are in a minefield of 3rd party rights, an area I don't fully understand.

However, we had a council parking ticket overturned by the parking appeals service on a similar principle recently, despite the fact that councils have stautory rights, unlike these private companies.

Me, I would write a letter back to them saying that their contract is invalid and unenforcable, and that no further correspondance will be entertained, and that costs will be recovered in the event of it going to court. 1000:1 that you may get the odd further letter, but then won't hear anything.

Your choice though...

J

VXR SIX

733 posts

109 months

[news] 
Monday 18th April 2005 quote quote all
What is the name of the company?

joust

14,604 posts

139 months

[news] 
Monday 18th April 2005 quote quote all
PH's rule of posting said:
Please don't name and shame companies with which you've had a bad experience. It's a legal problem for us to host such messages.

hot wheels

Original Poster:

139 posts

150 months

[news] 
Monday 18th April 2005 quote quote all
VXR SIX said:
What is the name of the company?

Mail sent

joust

14,604 posts

139 months

[news] 
Monday 18th April 2005 quote quote all
hot wheels not wishing to break the rules said:

Mail sent

VXR SIX

733 posts

109 months

[news] 
Tuesday 19th April 2005 quote quote all
joust said:

PH's rule of posting said:
Please don't name and shame companies with which you've had a bad experience. It's a legal problem for us to host such messages.



We are not allowed to watch out for these cowboys?

hot wheels

Original Poster:

139 posts

150 months

[news] 
Sunday 22nd May 2005 quote quote all
just an update
after lengthy investigation i couldnt officially establish ownership of the road in question but confirmed that there are no officialy sanctioned independant parking inspectors in Manchester councils environs
On their own parking departments advice i chose to ignore the ticket and if contacted deny recieving it and ask for evidence of the offence (noting that they have no powers to convict )
to date i've heard nothing at all.............

NiceCupOfTea

22,674 posts

131 months

[news] 
Monday 23rd May 2005 quote quote all


Good work

hot wheels

Original Poster:

139 posts

150 months

[news] 
Monday 23rd May 2005 quote quote all
NiceCupOfTea said:


Good work



thanks "life, of small victories is made"
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