No more avoiding parking penalties

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by GJH, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    I saw mention of changes to the law elsewhere so did a bit of research.

    Long overdue clarification of the law dealing with parking on private land comes into force next Monday with the implementation of The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, specifically Part 3 Chapter 2 (SS 54-56 and Schedule 4). In addition to dealing with "cowboy clampers" the Act gives landowners legal powers to recover parking charges from vehicle keepers where they don't identify the driver.

    The DfT has provided guidance Here.

    So, the message is watch out when parking to make sure you know the conditions and comply with them - whether it be making sure you are properly parked in a bay, staying longer than the free two hours at motorway services or whatever.
     
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  2. olley

    olley Funster

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    They still have to take you to court, isn't that the same as it is now?

    Ian
     
  3. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    The Act brings in a new appeals process which will avoid the necessity to go to court in most cases. Also, making the keeper liable will mean that it will be easier/cheaper for landowners to take action.
     
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  4. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    Can I remind you that

    Can I remind you that the case of Shoe Lane Parking still applies .. offer and acceptance.

    The signs must be at the entrance to the car park and you have to be able to read them before you enter. If not then there is no contract in force.

    The new requirements in effect cover two things... getting rid of cowboy clampers. and to balance that they have tried to close (I say tried) to close the loop hole of not providing drivers details .. hence this is why I have always said do not answer any communications. Before these changes you had no obligation to provide to any car park company the name and address of the driver. Now the penalty passes to the registered keeper. There is miles of wriggle room if they do not use cameras. I can still see many challenges coming.

    early days.

    good and bad news for some.


    Bob
     
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  5. Gooney

    Gooney Funster

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    Solution

    Always carry a spare:thumb:
     

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  6. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    At the entrance? That may be the case with car parks, as in the Shoe Lane case, where a ticket is taken at the entrance but surely not in a pay & display car park or one which is free for a certain time where signs are placed in one or more places around the car park. The Act simply requires "adequate notice" to be given. Para 7 of the guidance says
    and FAQ 6, dealing with consumer protection, advises
    No doubt there will be people who think they have a right to do what they please and shirk their responsibilities and there will be lawyers who see the fee income they will receive as adequate reason for supporting them. That would probably be the case whatever the legislation.
     
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  7. quarryjmiller

    quarryjmiller Read Only Funster

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    A really useful post thank you, cowboy clampers have had all of the publicity but there are some particularly nasty cctv operators who will benefit from this.

    One of our delivery vans overstayed by 4 minutes at Surrey Quays shopping centre in London (the delay came about as the result of thieves ripping a deadlocked side door completely off a 2 year old Renault Master van, it took a while for the drivers to fashion a temporary repair, security reacted promptly and predictably - they marched our drivers straight to the 'we are not responsible sign'), as registered keeper I received a demand for £80 rising to £160 if not settled quickly, as per the advice from Bob I just kept ignoring the increasingly threatening nonsense notices.

    Under the new legislation I will not be in a position to do that in the future and my only recourse would be to pursue the unreasonable charge route.

    I anticipate the operators shortening the permitted time allowance and increasing the penalties in order to recover lost revenue from the loss of their wheel clamping activities, take nothing for granted and read the signs every time is the advice we have given our drivers.

    Supermarket and Shopping Centre operators should be stopped from hiding behind the excuse of not being responsible for car park management, the dodgy 'parking management' company (St Helens based) sent a parking notice complete with the scales of justice emblazoned on it and made a crude attempt to make it look like a local authority PCN.
     
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  8. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    Hopefully the nasty/dodgy operators will become a thing of the past as a result of the provision (Para 2 of the Guidance) that only
     
  9. quarryjmiller

    quarryjmiller Read Only Funster

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    Nice thought, sadly the reality is that the organisation to which they refer will let just about any body join as long as they cough up their subscription, same with DVLA, they would (possibly already do) sell your details to the Mafia if they paid the fee.
     
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  10. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    If "the dodgy 'parking management' company" has breached the BPA Code of Practice why not put in a complaint about them? I note that the CoP is changing from next week to reflect the new legislation.

    It may be interesting to see how the new appeals tribunal treats circumstances such as those mentioned, where the overstay is a result of theft/vandalism.
     
  11. Steve_UK

    Steve_UK Read Only Funster

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    The really interesting one, I believe, will be the test of the "reasonableness" of the charge which can only be an amount which covers the landholder's actual loss plus administration costs.

    Presumably this actual loss would, in the case of a fee-based car park, be the amount for the additional time spent there over and above any time paid for. My question would be whether the landholder (or parking management company) could get away with the current level of payments demanded, or would that be classed as an unfair term or condition in the parking contract?
     
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  12. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    I agree, the definition of "reasonableness" will be important. I suspect, though, that companies will be able, generally, to show that their admin costs are "reasonable" (whatever their relationship to charges seen currently). Admin costs will include the wages of the people processing the notices together with a proportion of the overheads which any business incurs (in many cases totalling rather more than a lay person might first think of).

    I would expect that if the amount of the charge is roughly in line with charges imposed by local authorities in the area then it would be likely to be held as reasonable.
     
  13. quarryjmiller

    quarryjmiller Read Only Funster

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    Intersting thought that one, I have just been looking at the website of the company that issued the ticket, they have changed address and assure potential clients that they erect signage to BPA standards, they do not actually claim to belong to the BPA and when you go to the BPA website they are not listed as members of the BPA.

    That does suggest that they may have an issue with the new regulations. I wonder if any of their clients know of the requirement and/or whether they even care. Maybe they have another company buried in their portfolio that does belong to the BPA.

    I also wonder if the BPA knows that this company is using their name in this way, there is even a link to the BPA from their website, I guess an e-mail is called for.

    Incidentally, I am not campaigning for a free for all on parking, I run a storage business where we suffer from thoughtless drivers who park vehicles on our roadside apron causing both inconvenience and occasionally hazardous situations for other motorists as large drag and drop lorries negotiate their way into our compound but I do not advocate the continual roll out of fines and penalties for minor transgressions where not only dodgy companies but large multi national corporations jump on the bandwagon to extract more cash from the unwary.
     
  14. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    lets take offer and acceptance further

    Lets take offer and acceptance further.. the backbone of every contract, be it buying a leg of beef or putting fuel in the motor home.. Many, many cases deal with different parts of a contract .. Shoe Lane Parking just being one.. dealing with entry into a car park and if my days at Uni serves me right it was not an automatic machine at entry.. the point of Shoe Lane was that the terms and conditions had to be clear.. hence we ended up with Lord Dennings Red Hand .. where it meant a term or contractual issue had to be seen not on the back of a ticket like the deck chair cases. (I cannot be bothered with looking it up just now).. but the terms and conditions have to be seen. If you enter and they are clear then you have accepted the offer and the contract is binding on both parties.

    BUT... always a but in law.

    If the terms and conditions are not clear then a court would need to decide and yes reasonableness would have to apply .. the 12 men on the Clapham Omnibus... is it a subjective or objective test that is the question.

    Remember these are guidelines... if you as the registered keep dispute them, then you have the rights to do so direct or in court. I would exercise my rights if I thought that I was not getting a fair shake from the car parking company. Remember they have a duty of care towards the motorist using the car park and allowances need to be made for exit times etc., Unreasonable actions do not sit well with the courts. Plus a wasted cost order is a very powerful weapon. Often suggested in papers if the case might be a board line issue.. do the car parking company want to risk it? I have found not so.

    But every case has it;s own history... as they say.. if you cannot do the time, do not do the crime.:Cool:

    This issue has a lot of legs yet...

    Bob:Blush:
     
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  15. Steve_UK

    Steve_UK Read Only Funster

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    But remember that the charges imposed by local authorities are "penalties" and not cost recovery. The act specifically prohibits penalty charges it would seem.
     
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  16. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    Yes, go for it. In those circumstances I would definitely report them to the BPA :Smile:

    We get a similar thing with parents doing the pram run to drop off/pick up their children from the school behind us.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2012
  17. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    well the hospitals do

    We already have NHS hospitals that have jumped on the band wagon.. they get over the issue by putting a barrier up and pay before you can leave.. like the airports.. you will see a lot more of that now I am sure.

    Bob
     
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  18. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    Given that penalty charges imposed by LAs are set by the Secretary of State to avoid LAs using them as an income source, I wonder how much difference there would be in practice.
     
  19. yorkshirepudding

    yorkshirepudding Read Only Funster

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    At the risk of repeating myself, don't give your hard earned cash to businesses located on developments which have this type of parking enforcement.
    Or - get out in good time.
     
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  20. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    The latter is the main point isn't it? Businesses with restrictions allow ample time for customers to do their shopping. Why should any business - or any landowner for that matter - provide free parking for people who provide them with no potential return?
     
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