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to expect to not pay this parking fine as my ticket blew over when I closed the car door?

(26 Posts)
sodthehousework Mon 07-Mar-11 10:17:28

Really annoyed. I parked in a private car park as I had a training day in London. when i got back to my car the ticket I had purchased had flipped over so it was face down. This must have happened when I closed the door and I didn't realise. Found that I had got a parking ticket (£70 if paid within 7 days, £100 thereafter and this is Oxfordshire not central Londo FGS!!) and appealed as I had a valid ticket. Was hoping they might be understanding but no. Had a reply saying it was valid and I still have to pay. have read a few things on the internet saying these tickets are legally unenforceable but wanted some advice. I am also in the first trimester and at the moment not keen on seeing bailiffs turn up or getting abusive letters. I am prepared to go to court as I feel this is unreasonable.
Any help much appreciated. I am torn between paying it to get them off my case or telling them I will see them in court.

QueeferSutherland Mon 07-Mar-11 10:19:59

Contest it.

Send a photo of the ticket to whoever. The council?

I have appealed on this matter and won. <Punches air>

Pterosaur Mon 07-Mar-11 10:21:42

I can only offer moral support and a precedent, but when this happened to me, in Stratford-upon-Avon, I simply wrote in with a photocopy of the ticket (which had fallen onto the floor of the car) and the fine was cancelled.

Good luck.

QueeferSutherland Mon 07-Mar-11 10:22:27

Oh, sorry, you had.blush

Contest again though. They probably won't take you to court, although I think they are in the right as tickets must be properly displayed.

Send a nice email jovialy saying how you have pregnancy brain or some such.

hr100 Mon 07-Mar-11 10:24:54

If its not a council one then you are right they are unenforceable. Dont contest it, just ignore all their letters. They will get nasty but give up after about 6 letters.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 07-Mar-11 10:34:59

Mr brother had this - he says you mustn't ignore the letters, if you do then they can send baliffs round, etc. He says just reply back to each letter saying you're contesting it and why. They will get bored after a while and leave it. Don't pay!

sodthehousework Mon 07-Mar-11 10:36:00

thanks all - I posted them the original ticket but have kept copies. Can also get some free legal advice through my union which is fab - have arranged to talk to them tomorrow. Keep getting all teary about it which is silly, must be the pregnancy hormones! I didn't even want to go on the bloomin' training day either but my colleague pulled out at the last minute.

freshmint Mon 07-Mar-11 10:37:58

is this didcot?
don't pay. if they want to get you they will have to take you to oxford county court and I can tell you that every single one of the full time district judges will throw it out.

freshmint Mon 07-Mar-11 10:38:52

rubbish viva
don't enter into any more correspondence
wait for a claim form from the court and if it comes (probably won't) then defend it

don't write again!

DandyDan Mon 07-Mar-11 11:33:29

We were threatened with higher fines and legal action if we didn't pay - we had bought a ticket and stuck it on the window, and in our absence, the hot sunshine had caused it to peel off and drop on the floor. When we left the car it was correctly displayed, but it had fallen off by the time we returned and found a fine on the windscreen. They still argued we had not displayed the ticket, even though we could prove we had one for the time allocated. This was a County Council car park.

Now we don't use the sticky thing at all; we lie the ticket on the dashboard (and make sure there isn't a breeze when we close the door).

oiwhatsoccuring Mon 07-Mar-11 11:38:29

You need to buy a Volvo - they have a little plastic clip on the drivers windscreen for you to secure your parking ticket.grin

sodthehousework Mon 07-Mar-11 11:39:45

yes this was didcot at the car park opposite the station - the one with all the pot holes so really well maintained..

freshmint Mon 07-Mar-11 13:01:15

yes those buggers ticketed me once because they said I wasn't correctly parked in a marked bay

you will note that the whole car park is actually a field of mud

I ignored them and parked in the ford garage car park for a while and threw all their letters in the bin and then they went away eventually

I do park there again now. £6! argh

TandB Mon 07-Mar-11 13:12:47

If it is a private car park and a private company then it is not a fine per se, so no,it is not enforceable. Effectively what they are doing is inviting you to instantly settle a claim that they are making against you for damages.

If you have a look on some of the consumer or motoring forums you will see all sorts of discussions about these tickets - the general consensus is that they will generally give up pre-court.

They can't send the bailiffs round without a court order and they can't get a court order without a hearing. Ignore if you feel brave enough. If not, send a single letter stating that they have no claim against you as you paid the required fee to park and that if they want to pursue the matter further then they will need to issue proceedings against you and that you will enter into no further correspondence. Then ignore. The general procedure is a oouple of letters demanding payment and threatening legal action followed by a couple more from bailiffs who generally turn out to be part of the same company.

A friend of mine had this - this is the advice I gave her. They gave up after about a half dozen letters.

TandB Mon 07-Mar-11 13:14:39

What company runs the carpark? It should say on the "ticket".

DitaVonCheese Mon 07-Mar-11 13:49:55

Did you admit in your first letter that you were driving the car? If not then write again and ask them to provide evidence of who was driving and that you will consider any other correspondence from them harrassment. Otherwise do what Kungfupannda says.

This happened to me (Sainsbury's car park) and I had maybe 2-3 letters and after that they gave up. Googling motoring forums is a good suggestion.

sodthehousework Tue 08-Mar-11 09:43:05

thanks all - some great advice. Unfortunately I responded to them quickly as I thought they might be reasonable - how naive of me! I have since read that if the registered owner was not driving at the time (it is OH's car) then you can deny that you knew who was driving and refuse to give any further information. Wish I had read that first but with the time limits on the lower payment it made me want to reply quickly. I'm going to do as suggested and ignore them. I've got copies of everything if I need to go to court. By then I should have a big baby bump too so maybe that will help? ;)
thanks again for everyone's help

DitaVonCheese Tue 08-Mar-11 20:55:35

I was the registered owner of the car but it still works the same way - the onus is on them to prove who was driving it at the time.

Good luck

sodthehousework Mon 08-Aug-11 11:01:13

an update and a BIG thank you to those of you that advised not to pay this ridiculous parking ticket.
So far have had about 5 letters requesting payment which I have ignored. The last letter gave me a discounted fine to pay so that smelled of desperation to me.
There was also some useful advice on forums if anyone needs it.
Thanks again smile

JacksonPollocks Mon 08-Aug-11 11:31:19

Just thought I'd chip in for anyone else with a private fine.

In Morrisons by us you have to enter your reg. number on the ticket. DH borrowed my car which is the same make/ model and entered his reg by mistake. We got a ticket in the post, then photos showing the car driving in and out etc, letters got more and more official looking with police style borderd. Ignored the lot... nothing now for 5 months. I probably would have paid if caught out fairly, but he'd bought a ticket and they had provided photo evidence of this themselves!

anewyear Mon 08-Aug-11 14:56:27

I did the same as another poster, ticket wrong back to front in the window we got several letters asking us pay the fine, I kept forgetting to send proof that I had paid, when we got a 'final' pay us or go to court letter.
I sent a photocopy of my ticket and apart from sending a snotty letter to me saying they wouldnt be so lenient next time,!! they were happy with that.

DitaVonCheese Mon 08-Aug-11 16:55:38

OP, you can write and tell them that you will consider any further contact harassment if their letters are upsetting you smile

GwendolineMaryLacey Mon 08-Aug-11 16:58:51

I had this when I lived in a flat and we had residents' permits. It wasn't one you could stick on so was on the dashboard and it blew off. I bloody paid them £90. I didn't know back then that these private companies were all shysters. Know better now.

ZillionChocolate Mon 08-Aug-11 17:12:13

Glad you've been brave sodthehousework! I'm also ignoring letters, notwithstanding their very "generous" discounts! I don't think there's any point engaging with these people.

singforsupper Mon 08-Aug-11 17:22:23

A relief to read this, I have also recently tried the 'ignoring' method of payment of parking fines, and sure enough, they sent about six silly letters, mostly with spelling mistakes, and dropped it.

Private parking firms cannot enforce payment of fines.

Sorry I can't remember why, it's hugely technical.

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