/ Motoring

Have you ever challenged a parking fine?

Private parking fines are on the agenda in the high court as one unhappy consumer is challenging the law. But we feel this case goes beyond parking, which is why we’ve been permitted to intervene‚Ķ

A parking fine is an annoyance all drivers have probably experienced. That sinking feeling when you return to your car to see that yellow notice under the windscreen wiper is never a welcome one, yet we pay up nonetheless.

But Barry Beavis who received an £85 parking fine for over-staying by 56 minutes, has decided to take the private car park operator to court.

What the law states

Since the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 came into force, the law states that private land owners are banned from towing, blocking-in, clamping or immobilising a vehicle without lawful authority. This was put in place in an effort to control clamping by rogue firms.

However, fines can still be issued, for example, if a vehicle owner stays longer than their allotted time. While the fine is meant to be proportionate, sometimes they can be over £100 a fine and it’s the excessive amount of these fines that Barry Beavis is challenging.

Split opinions on parking fines

His lawyers have argued that ‘to be lawful, charges should be set at levels meant only to compensate for any loss in achieving the aim of deterring over-stayers and not to make large profits’. They felt that ‘the losses to ParkingEye were very small administrative costs, and its charges were so excessive as to be unenforceable’.

However, the Independent Parking Committee has argued that fines are ‘the only protection that landowners have short of installing expensive barrier equipment’. While also adding that people have a ‘choice’ if they want to park there or not.¬†It’s for those reasons that the private car park operator feels the ‘level of charges are neither extortionate nor unconscionable but within the bounds of reasonableness’.

This is bigger than parking fines

We’ve decided to intervene in the case because it has ability to set a precedent well beyond the parking industry. If Mr Beavis were to lose the case, it could have a wider impact on the law for penalty charges and unfair terms, which is why the Court of Appeal has granted us permission to share what, we feel, will be the wider implications of any decision.

The worry is that any decision in favour of the parking operator could perhaps see a relaxation of the law on penalty charges. There’s then potential for higher fines and charges to creep in across a whole range of consumer markets.

Even if the final results of the case could see the Court ruling in favour of the private parking operator, we hope they’ll take our views on penalty charges into account.

Have you had a parking fine you think was an excessive amount? Or do you feel it’s fair for parking companies to fine if you over-stay your time?

[UPDATE 04/11/2015] – The Supreme Court today gave its judgement on Barry Beavis’ case. Disappointingly, he lost.

We intervened in the case to ensure important consumer rights that protect people from excessive fines in all sectors were not watered down. However, parking fines issued by private companies have been ruled as fair and proportionate by the Supreme Court..

Our executive director Richard Lloyd said:

‚Äč‚Äč’This is a thoroughly disappointing judgment based on a narrow‚Äč ‚Äčinterpretation of the law. It will cause chaos if cowboy parking firms‚Äč ‚Äčchoose to take advantage of the ruling by hitting drivers with even‚Äč ‚Äčmore excessive charges. Our advice to consumers is to be on your guard‚Äč ‚Äčand always appeal if you think a parking fine is unfair.’

We’re¬†now planning to take the issue up with government ministers since¬†a reversal of the judgment will require changes to the law.


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That is right but there is still a statutory framework under which enforcement is carried out and it requires clarity, certainty, and a right of challenge or appeal.

As John says there is a formal process to dispute a penalty. I gave a link above to government advice – gov.uk/appeal-parking-fine

In the Beavis case, the judges deemed it fair that a penalty charge of£85, (I believe) was reasonable. How can a judge, on a salary of around a quarter of a million, say what is a reasonable penalty for say, me; and old age pensioner on £10,000 per annum when the loss to the parking company only amounts to, less than one pound.
There is also the cases where the parking machine malfunctions and issues either no ticket or the wrong value ticket. In this case ParkingEye will still hound you for their pound of flesh. There is also the data protection angle. What gives the DVLA the right to dispense personal information to any Tom, Dick or Harry?
The government definitely needs to give this matter some serious thought and come down on these cowboys.

I’d like to see Which? campaign against extortionate parking penalties with the same energy it seems to devote to unarranged overdrafts.

To get access to the DVLA’s vehicle keepers’ database an enforcement company has to comply with a code of practice laid down by the British Parking Association [a trade body]. In my opinion that is not a satisfactory form of regulation for the kind of firms involved. They are not all bad but most skate on thin ice and act on a presumption of guilt until the driver proves their innocence.

I visited a hotel that advertises free parking, I entered the car park, parked the car visited the hotel and left. I then received a demand from parking eye, it transpires that the hotel have given the management of the car park to a contractor namely parking eye. I wrote to the hotel and complained and received confirmation that the ticket would be cancelled. Parking eye refused to accept that the hotel could cancel the ticket abd subsequently took me to court.
I lost on a “contract technicality” as the judge put it as my contract in law is with parking eye and not the hotel.

Therefore I should pay parking eye and claim back my parking charge, loss of income, expenses etc of the hotel via the courts. Proof this country has gone mad.
I am currently in the process of issuing proceedings against the hotel.

how long does a parking enforcement company have after the alleged offence commited to send you a charge notice ? ie : is there a set time limit

I don’t know whether the regulations are the same for private enforcement companies but for local councils a penalty charge notice issued in pursuance of a CCTV enforcement activity must be served no later than 28 days starting with the date on which the alleged contravention took place. Outside that time limit the notice is invalid and should be appealed against. It is highly likely that the same rule applies to private enforcement. The period allowed for making payment starts with the date of issue of the notice.

If enforcement is carried out by a patrolling operative the notice should be affixed to the windscreen immediately and timescales run from that date.

On private land there is no time limit but if they want to issue a court claim then it’s 6 years.

As far as I can see the delivery of a penalty charge is covered by the Protection of Freedom Act 2012 Schedule 4 paragraphs 8(5) and 9(5). One deals with a penalty notice placed on the vehicle and gives 28 days to comply (pay). The second is when the vehicle is not present (might be a cctv / npr car park for example) when the notice must be delivered to the address linked to the vehicle within 14 days, then giving 28 days to comply.

That sounds more like it – it would be very unfair if parking tickets could be issued without time limit thus prejudicing the driver’s opportunity to challenge it through having little recollection of the circumstances. If companies are going to rely on invisible automatic enforcement processes the least they can do is issue any penalty notices expeditiously and 14 days is ample to obtain the vehicle keeper’s details from the DVLA and issue and post the notice.

Does anyone know if there is a time limit on the pursuit of someone who refused to pay the charge? In 2011 I told the parking company that I would ‘abide by the decision of the court in this matter’, after they had rejected my appeal twice. For me this was a matter of principle. The only communication I have had from them in the past five years was a letter in December 2011 (2 months after the ‘offence’) saying ‘when we have received and reviewed all the information requested we will respond in full’. I am not sure who requested information but it wasn’t me. Not a word from them since, until a couple of days ago. Is it reasonable to now be threatened with court action by their legal team?

They have 6 years to issue a court claim.

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It works both ways, Duncan. Under the UK system a citizen can claim against a company up to six years after the discovery of a breach of contract or other violation. If a company delays taking action when it is in possession of the facts with a view to prejudicing the rights of the respondent the Court can strike out the claim; that would rarely happen in reverse.

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Anne says:
8 August 2016

I have recently received a parking fine on a little side access road in Armthorpe, whilst I admit I didn’t see the parking signs I have parked on the side street for the last 30yrs. it is apparently privately owned and the owners have decided to put parking signs up even for residents who live on the road. I was only there for 5mins and received a ¬£42 parking fine. I was upset about this and told the post office where I had been they told me not to pay it as they rang the council and police and were advised not to pay a fine one of their employees had incurred. I am now worried about this as if I don’t pay within 2 weeks it’ll go up to ¬£70. Am really unsure how to proceed.

Bad luck, Anne. If there were visible signs up when you parked, and they clearly explained the restrictions, then I would expect the penalty charge notice to be valid. In that case it would be in your interests to pay the fine now before it escalates. If you don’t pay and the parking enforcement company decides to pursue you for the unpaid penalty and eventually gets a court order against you, you will face a much heavier cost. If it is privately-owned land I presume neither the police nor the council have any responsibility in the matter and so they should not offer advice. I am sure the people in the post office were trying to be helpful but unless you are certain the parking ticket is not valid it might be better to pay it and get it over with. If you appeal against it, it could be hanging over you for weeks, and if you lose you will be liable for the full ¬£70.

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Hi I’ve never done this before so please forgive anything i do wrong but i felt i needed to share my story and see if anyone can offer me any factual advice that may be useful so here goes…….In February last year i parked in a private car park. My husband paid for the ticket( ¬£4.00) The machine gave him a ticket printed with the letter (i) instead of the registration number. we displayed the ticket and went shopping we returned after a few hours (we still had 2 hours left on the ticket) and left the car park. About a week later i received a Parking charge notice for ¬£60 saying i had not purchased a ticket. I e.mailed the company sending them a copy of the ticket and telling them i would not be paying their FINE. They then upped the payment to ¬£100 (saying my ticket was now an invalid ticket and therefore a breach of contract as the machine needs a full registration to issue a ticket). This has now been escalated to court ( fees now stand at ¬£275 plus costs) I stupidly believed that we lived in a fair and judicial country so cannot understand how this can happen to people who pay their way . I have been through the court system followed all the instructions regarding paperwork and have now been sent a court date for October. My concern is does this mean the court feel that the parking company have a case or do they have an obligation to carry this through by law ? I’ve never been to court before so i’m at a loss as to what to expect and i cannot afford to get a solicitor. Any advice would be fab.

Presumably the court has made no determination but are simply responding to a request from the parking company to recover payment. Did you input the registration number yourselves and do it incorrectly? I would have thought the court would find in your favour for such a simple and easy error (on a keypad presumably) and you may be entitled to recover costs and reasonable expenses. If you had legal cover with your car insurance that may have covered legal representation if you had asked at the outset, but if your case is as clear cut as you say I’d be surprised if you lost.

However, any advice from Which? Which? Legal)?

jean says:
23 August 2016

i got a parking ticket in the supermarket car park in glasgow now the firm in england is
taking me to court is this legal

Probably, if you haven’t paid or challenged the parking charge. I don’t think the jurisdiction makes any difference in this case.

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Jean;-Have you actually received court papers yet, because only the driver can be liable if the car park is in Scotland.

Jean asked whether it was legal for an English company to take action against a motorist who contravened the regulations of a private parking site in Glasgow. There is nothing to stop an English company from pursuing a debt arising in Scotland. It will have to proceed in accordance with Scottish law but, if the parking ticket has not been challenged or paid, court action is probable.

Recently I parked in a Parking Eye car park. When I purchased my ticket I didn’t realise I had mixed up the registration number from my recently SORN car and the one I was driving. I received a parking fine but appealed as I still had the ticket, showing I had paid for the correct amount of parking. I explained my mistake, which they have acknowledged, but they are still asking for a reduced ¬£20 fine. Can they enforce this?

I think you may have been fortunate. Parking Eye could look at such instances and assume the holder had produced someone else’s ticket to avoid payment. However, worth pursuing; they may have an even softer side.

My concern is that we should get the unreasonably high penalties made illegal and reduce them to much more realistic levels, in relation to the charge not paid, overlooked, overstayed or whatever the reason. Most accept they are at fault. But I suspect most are inflamed by the extortion – both in the cost and in the extra penalty for not paying on time. I’d like Which? to campaign against such unreasonable penalties.

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The Scottish Parliament debated a Consumer Advice Scotland report on private parking penalties. theyworkforyou.com/sp/?id=2015-09-22.7.0

The debate concluded
“Fines should be capped at a reasonable level and the CAS guidance should be acknowledged. We will move forward to ensure that people are treated more fairly, which is the essence of the CAS campaign.

As a Scottish Government minister I cannot say, ‚ÄúDon‚Äôt pay the fine.‚ÄĚ It would be irresponsible of me to give that message. However, if people check their legal rights and responsibilities, many will realise that they have not breached what they think they may have breached. My advice is that people should check their rights, check the law, seek representation and do the right thing.

The Scottish Government will take on board all today‚Äôs comments and convey them to all the operators. We will strive for a fairer, more transparent and more reasonable approach, so that no one is unfairly charged to the point at which they are being caused anxiety and financial loss.”

I cannot see any enacted legislation regarding private parking penalties. Could you give a link please?

The danger with employing a lawyer is the cost may far outweigh any gain.

This kind of debate with a robust outcome should take place at Westminster. Which? have the ability to raise a complaint to instigate this if there is sufficient support. The courts have declared these penalties to be fair. many disagree I suspect.

Jean didn’t mention the amount of the parking charge she has incurred or where it now stands after any escalation for non-payment. It was a supermarket car park and in my experience these are always well signed but without the actual facts it is all speculation.

In the Beavis case, both the Appeal Court and the Supreme Court upheld the parking fine of ¬£85 as being “not excessive” and not out of proportion to the interests of the car park operator. Given that, I cannot see the Scottish Courts being able to take a more favourable line until the Scottish government actually alters the law.

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I wonder what “people” might think was “not excessive” as opposed to the courts. I’d like a survey to find out. And where will the upper limit on “excessive” have to be before some action is taken.

Many think the penalty for contravening private parking regulations should be the loss of income plus a reasonable admin charge to collect the outstanding amount. The trouble is, this precedent would also impact on public parking penalties where local authorities would lose substantial income. Perhaps therein lies the dilemma?

Now that the actual enforcement is actually done robotically I think ¬£25 is more than enough for overstaying by up to one hour. Some local authorities have quite low penalties for public car parks and in my nearest town the municipal car parks are all free anyway. There doesn’t seem to be a problem with turnover of parking space caused by all-day blocking. All but one of the supermarkets have their own car parks, however, and the going rate if caught overstaying seems to be ¬£70 [these car parks are rarely full and enforcement is negligible]. Local authorities are not supposed to make a profit out of parking penalties – their parking accounts are expected to balance taking one year with another.

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Greetings all,

I am looking for advice as to the best way to approach a ‘Parking Charge Notice’ (NB NOT a Penalty charge) determined as reason; 0002 No Ticket.

The background is that I parked on a private car park in Manchester to the rear of the Aquatics Centre to go and watch a show. I paid the charge of £4.50, and placed the ticket on the dashboard. I also, due to the direct sunshine on the car left all four windows of the car very slightly open for a little air flow.

When we returned to the car approximately 25-30 minutes before the parking time expired, we found a yellow Parking Charge Notice on the car. The reason being that the ticket had come off the dash board and wasn’t visible.

I took a picture of the ticket, the ticket next to the clock on the car and sent in an Email appeal to parking-tickets.co.uk and received a negative response to the appeal. I had included the pertinent facts that I had displayed the ticket (And I checked before moving away from the car), the ticket had been paid for in good faith, and that, in all probability had been displaced due to air movements in the car.

I would like to pursue this with the IAS (Independent Appeals Service), outlining that i) I had paid for a ticket and left before the ticket expired, ii) the parking attendant was being paid to do his job, so there was no additional cost other than maybe 2-4 minutes to walk around the vehicle to check for a ticket, maybe take photos and then print a ticket, and finally iii) The Parking charge notice states ‘No Ticket’, yet I can produce a valid ticket for that time. SO whether or not the Parking attendant can see the ticket or not is invalid. The fine is to be levied for No Ticket, and not, ‘Failure to display a ticket’…

Would anyone please have the time and knowledge to maybe help me out before going down this process and probably having to pay the full amount of ¬£100 and not the ¬£60 pay it quick option…

I look forward to anyone’s response in this matter and thanks for your time.

Simon:-The IAS is a waste of time, it’s not impartial. You may want to go the MoneySavingExpert.com or Pepipoo.com websites for further advice.

The parking attendant did his job as he could not see a ticket. A ticket must be on display. The problem i see with pursuing a claim might be that unless your ticket shows a registration number it could be concluded you had used someone else’s ticket to rebut the charge. Other factors might help your case – if CCTV shows your car entering and matches the ticket purchase time for example. I’d go through the complaints process; as far as I know the extra charge will not be levied if the complaint is in progress.

So far the courts have taken no account of the actual loss of revenue when determining the size of the penalty charge; in fact they see ¬£85 as “not excessive”. I believe many disagree and I’d like Which? to campaign for fair penalties.

Colin McCandlish says:
25 August 2016

I was recently challenged by a ‘collection firm’, called BW Legal in Bradford, working on behalf of Excel Parking, to pay a bill
to the tune of £154:00
I was cleared of the PCN in (believe it or not) 2011!
I am still being harassed
Whats going on?

A friend of mine has just received a court claim notice from BW legal on behalf of Excel Parking. He has contested the £100 fine for a 1 hour overstay as he sent them a cheque for £5 to cover it. They quoted the Beavis case in their letter. We are basing his defence on the case of Parking Eye v Carguis, which Mr Carguis won Рon the basis of it being an unintentional overstay in a paid carpark. Mr Beavis was in a free carpark with a 2 hour limit, with no hourly charge, just the overstay fine. This was the crucial difference. You can find the case on Parking Cowboys website.

I have lost my ticket how can i pay?

If it was an on-street parking contravention, call the local authority responsible for the enforcement and give them your VRM [vehicle registration mark – car number plate details], make of car and the date and the location if you can remember them. They will ask you for your name and address. They can then check it on their database and can take payment by telephone [it could save you a lot of money if time for discounted payment is expiring] or can send you a duplicate Penalty Charge Notice [parking ticket] so you can decide whether to challenge it or pay by cheque.

If the parking contravention was on private land, revisit the location and look at the signs to get the name and phone number of the car park operator. If it was a supermarket, you can telephone them and ask for those details to save a journey. You can then proceed as set out above.

Hi , my husband has just received a Parking charge notice from Civil Enforcement Ltd – the incident (for which I was the driver not him) was on 24/08/16 but the Notice wasn’t issued until the 22/09/2016 – well outside of the 14 days limit for the issuing of a Notice to Keeper according to the Protection of Freedoms Act . Has any one successfully appealed on this basis?

I was with a friend hurrying to a talk in Kidderminster.Parked near Dunelm,no meter no signs.Asked two people they said parking was free in this car park.Went to the meeting had a coffee, the car park was not over used at all.Few days later parking fine arrived in the post, fifteen minutes over a two hour limit. My point is are the council aware of this ?There should be large signs in this dark area,otherwise this is a totally easy way to catch in suspecting visitors to the town.Next time I will pay in the equally empty old multi storey,no wonder people avoid the town centre !

josie, if the car park regulations are poorly or inadequately displayed you have a case to challenge the penalty. Best to revisit the car park and photograph the warning signage.

Intrigued by this, and out of curiosity, I had a look at Google Maps to see what is visible to a driver. The flat, poorly maintained, car park near Dunelm seems to have no signs at the entrance but I did notice a large information sign on one side of the car park that probably explains the parking rules; unfortunately it was impossible to read it on Google Maps because of the camera angle. There was no indication whether or not that is a private or Council-run car park – the parking charge notice will tell you though; councils have no responsibility for what goes on in private car parks. I would say that the flat car park is poorly signed with no information at all at the entrance so a challenge would be worth while.

Another flat car park, also in New Road and quite close by, looks like a municipal car park, being well maintained and marked out, yet there are no signs of ownership. It does, however, have clear Pay-&-Display signs at the entrance and within.

The multi-storey car park in Green Street that is part of the Dunelm development [and has a “Welcome to Dunelm sign at the entrance] has a large clear sign as you enter that says “Private Land / Customer Parking Only / 2 Hours Maximum Stay”. I think that would be a better, safer and more secure place to leave your car and you won’t have to pay if you leave within two hours – but the penalty for overstaying could be very high [some shopping developments charge ¬£70 without the option of an early payment discount] so best to check on the rules and keep an eye on the clock.

colin says:
3 October 2016

Ive just been told by Highview parking ltd that i have to pay £110 which will increase if i dont pay ASAP, im Disabled i had my blue bagde displayed, paid for a ticket went over the time, appleaed lost it, then lost again via POPLA. Now been told its a £110 and raising! Any help would be greatfully received.

Since you have lost your appeal the best thing you can do now is to pay the parking charge as soon as possible. It would be interesting to hear the reason for the parking charge and why your appeal failed. Perhaps because you had to buy a pay-&-display ticket the Blue Badge gave you no concession and once over the time limit a contravention occurred. I presume this was about parking on private land rather than on the public highway or in a municipal car park.

colin says:
3 October 2016

Hi John, yes it was a private car park in Tenby, my wife brought a ticket which lasted an hour im lead to beleive. My car is a motability car which had to be recovered from Tenby due to a engine problem , it was in the Garage for 6 weeks after we got back which didnt help my appeal due to the ticket being in the car. After losing the appeal via POPLA i emailed Highview explaining i couldnt pay the fine in one go, to which after dragging there heels and i beleive making sure it went over a time where i had to pay the max charge, that was the responce i got which i posted this morning. I feel like they are bullying me and trying to intimadate me with threats. Im on benifits and cant afford to pay £110. Any ideals/experience on what route to take now? Thank you.

I believe the maximum charge applies immediately you lose the appeal, Colin Рa discount is only available for prompt payment of the parking charge. These firms seem to have no compassion but if it is impossible for you to raise the £110 or use a credit card then I suggest you send as much as you can afford with a promise to pay the balance as soon as possible and defy them to proceed against you. You might like to see if the local newspaper in Tenby might feature your case. Best of luck.

Colin; could you stay longer in the car park if you paid made?

colin says:
3 October 2016

Hi Castle yes you could of stayed longer if you paid more, by the time i put my scooter together and had a look around the ticket had expired.

Your situation differs from the Parking Eye v Beavis case because Mr Beavis’s only option was to leave after 2 hours; where as, you could stay longer if you paid. Although there’s no guarantee, if this went to court the judge would probably rule the ¬£110 a penalty and you would win.

Personally I wouldn’t pay and I’d wait to see if they take court action; especially since any court case would be at your local court and Tenby is a long way from anywhere!

colin says:
3 October 2016

Thank you For that Castle it was my intention to see what happened after i refused to pay £110, i have asked HIGHVIEW to break down the Charge in layman terms so i can see how a £35 parking fine has escolated to £110 via a so called Independant outfit called POPLA!

Colin; Good to hear you are not paying.

According to the BMPA, Highview Parking Ltd have not taken any cases to court in the last 2.5 years, despite issuing around 150,000 tickets each year.

Colin – Please do bear in mind that any court action would be for the purpose of recovering a debt and would not be about the amount of the penalty or the parking rules where you parked because those matters have been determined on appeal. The court action could lead to the issue of a warrant for bailiffs to obtain the money owed plus further expenses.

In view of your declared financial situation I advise you to consider very carefully whether what Castle has said is appropriate in your circumstances. Also, I don’t think the court application would necessarily be at a court near you as it would normally be wherever it suits the claimant [Highview Parking] and possibly convenient for their main offices which are not identified on their website; if they do proceed against you and you wish to appear in person I believe you can apply to have the case transferred to a local court.

So far as I can see you have a guaranteed exit from this situation for £110 and the price of a stamp if you act quickly, or you can take your chances on a number of uncertain factors that might or might not play in your favour and could add to your stress levels.

colin says:
4 October 2016

Thank you John for your experience regarding my issue around the parking ticket, i feel very stronger about private companies being allow to bully and intimadate people regarding money, i feel let let down by POPLA aswell as HIGHVIEW sent them a print out of number plates who used the car park on the day in question, what i noticed was alot of errors on the printout of car number plates, there were alot with the first 2 numbers missing, alot had other numbers missing aswell. Nothing was mentioned about that by either HIGHVIEW or POPLA? my second point is, when i emailed HIGHVIEW regarding the ticket and payment, i was told it was £70 by POPLA and i had 14 days to pay it. While waiting for a reply from HIGHVIEW it dragged on and on until i received a letter now saying it was £110? I have all the letters/emails from HIGHVIEW & POPLA aswell as all my letters and emails, which will prove i contacted HIGHVIEW before the 14 days asking about payment! Does this make any sense to anyone ? Can anyone shed any light on where i stand please regarding this information. Thank you.

colin says:
4 October 2016

Thank you Castle for your kind words regarding my issue, its tough knowing you are being ripped off and powerless to do anything about due to the Law in this sector. POPLA were not very helpful if im honest in my case, its always after an event in life you find out more about everything and wished you knew before you started anything! Isnt life one big gamble….

Colin – Referring to your previous comments addressed to me. I am not an expert on how parking charges escalate and different landowners have different rates and terms, but the usual arrangement is that the parking charge is set at a certain rate – in your case ¬£70 – but is discounted by 50% if paid within 14 days. If you challenge the parking charge you lose the right to pay at the discounted rate. The company has a a certain period during which to consider your challenge and issue its decision. I am sorry I don’t know how long that is without further research but I expect you could find the answer on-line [or the paperwork you received from Highview might explain it]. They must have rejected your challenge because you appealed to POPLA who did not find in your favour and decided that the parking ticket was issued with justification. At this point the penalty became due and presumably, because of your POPLA appeal, an extra ¬£40 was added to the penalty. I have no idea whether any delay by Highview in responding to your challenge increased the amount to be paid although I suspect not; it was more likely as a result of your appeal to POPLA. Every appeal to POPLA has to be paid for somehow by the parking industry and I expect they levy an extra charge on every unsuccessful appeal.

The development of Automatic Number Plate Readers [ANPR] that record every movement in and out of a car park has made parking enforcement a very one-sided and unyielding automatic process. Huge profits are being generated because every single contravention is being caught, whereas with periodical patrols on foot drivers had half a chance of being able to explain the situation to the enforcement officer or be let off if there was only a minor length of overstay.

colin says:
3 October 2016

Dear Sir,
Any agreements to accept payment at a reduced rate, or in instalments, were only available prior to the referral of this case to POPLA, and no further arrangements of this nature are available. The charge is now outstanding at the full amount of £110, and this case will escalate accordingly if payment is not received.
Yours faithfully,
Highview Parking Limited

Is it not time Which? campaigned against these extortionate parking penalties that bear no relation to the cost of the offence? Maybe a supercomplaint? We surely do not hold with people being “ripped off” to this extent?

I quite agree Malcolm. On private land where no highway obstruction is being caused there is absolutely no justification for a ¬£110 charge for overstaying a one-hour time limit. It ought to be possible to ‘buy’ an extra hour for the normal parking rate plus a small admin fee. Some tolerance for disabled people on benefits would also be good instead of the indiscriminate attitude of “if you can run a car you can afford the parking charge” – a decent landowner would also provide some free spaces for disabled people. If the Tenby car park is associated with a prominent retailer or property company an appeal to their better nature might assist as sometimes they put the car parking management in the hands of a contractor and take no interest in how they operate. One might even imagine Which? letting the local press know about this case [with Colin’s permission, of course].

colin says:
3 October 2016

Thank you John & Malcolm for your time and sharing your experience regarding my ticket, im going to dip alittle deeper regarding the volume of the Charge (£110) for going over the time limit and the time Highview took to respond to my emails!

It would be good to hear how you get on, Colin.

colin says:
3 October 2016

I will post my experience John, hoping it will help others. As it is disgusting the way we get treated by a money grabbing company hell bend on making a profit with no regards to the outcome and the affects it has on peoples lifes!

I get very confused reading peoples experience on “should we pay or shouldnt we pay”, should i let them take me to court, or shouldnt i”? And if they have no Legal right in what they are doing, why do we give in? Very confused.com

colin says:
3 October 2016

John, ive just emailed the Tenby Observer with my case regarding my Charge of £110 by HIGHVIEW PARKING LTD.

The courts have decided that the penalty charges imposed are “reasonable” so the gamble you take is whether Highview will pursue you for the debt or not. If they do it seems unlikely you would win, and you would be even more out of pocket.

Until we have an organisation prepared to challenge again the size of these disproportionate payments – maybe with the government, or even a human rights action (it almost amounts to extortion) then we will continue to pay up or gamble. We should, of course, observe parking terms and not deliberately flout them. Equally there should be a fair arbitration service to consider sensible reasons why a parking term on private land was exceeded. But for all of us, poor or wealthy, we should not be subjected to huge arbitrary charges that bear no relation to the cost.