Parking on Private Land
Have you recieved parking fine for parking on private land and think you were fined unfairly?
Did you know you can challenge it.
Examples of private land parking could be a shopping centre, retail park, hospital or other privately owned car park, it could also be private road. You may receive a ticket on your car or through the post to your home address.
These private land parking fines called Parking Charge Notices and are different to Penalty Charge Notices which are generally issued by the council, police or a body representing them for offences comitted on public land such as those run by the council for parking.
By Choosing to ignore a private land parking fines you get in a private car park, The parking company managing the car park can get the details of the registered keeper of the car from the DVLA and will chase you for payment. Only registered and accredited parking companies can get your details from DVLA.
If you recieve a private land parking fines for trespassing on a private road, the managing company will be able to get your details if you are the registered keeper of the car from the DVLA if you choose not to pay. They are not required to be members of the Accredited Trade Association (ATA).
Contract for Parking on Private Land
By parking in a private car park you will be entering into a contract with the owner to comply with the rules they have designated for the car park. By breaking these rules, you are breaking the contract you have entered into with the owner or their agents and you will receive parking on private land fine. Breaking the rules could be as simple as not paying, using more time than you have paid for or parking in an inconvenient way
If you break the parking rules
If you break the parking rules private landowners can issue a parking ticket and recover the losses they’ve suffered. Often a parking company will have a contract with the landowner to issue tickets on their behalf.
The majority of parking companies belong to an Accredited Trade Association (ATA) such as the British Parking Association (BPA) or the Independent Parking Committee (IPC). All ATA members have to follow set rules laid down the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and must comply with the association’s code of practice.
Early Payment of Parking Tickets
Paying your parking ticket early, Accredited Trade Association (ATA) members must give a discount for early payment other associations are not at liberty to do so and will only do so as a discretionary gesture.
Fighting Private Land Parking Fines
Whilst you might think getting a parking ticket for parking on private land because, as far as you are concerned, you have not broken any rules or the rules were not clearly shown or you were not aware you were parking on private land.
Parking companies who are members of Accredited Trade Association like the British Parking Association (BPA) or Independent Parking Committee (IPC), you should write to them with your reasons why you think the parking ticket is unfair. Unsuccessful requests to overturn private land parking fines can be formally appealed. Remember never ignore a private land parking ticket. ATA members can obtain your details from the DVLA.
Non ATA member firms do not have to accept your reasons why think the parking ticket is unfair. You can write to them and appeal to them for leniency . Ultimately the choices is theirs if thy choose ot pursue in you in court for payment.
Non ATA members are not allowed to obtain your details from the DVLA
Private Road Parking Tickets Parking on a private road is classed as trespassing Parking companies can issue charges if you ignore the landowners rights , but they must prove you have trespassed. As a rule these companies don’t manage parking facilities, but will charge you for trespassing on private land.
Companies who issue charges for trespassing on private land do not have to be members of any associations to obtain your details from DVLA.
Going to Court for a Parking Ticket
If you find yourself going to court over a private land parking fines as you may have good reasons for challenging the parking ticket or more importantly the amount of the charge. Beware if you lose your case, you will incur additional costs. Parking companies make the decision to prosecute based on the chance of recovering the charge and their costs. Quite often parking companies will take action to recover the money.
Parking fines and parking tickets served by post are capable of appeal just like any other.
Do not presume that the CCTV is overwhelming evidence that an offence has been committed.
The Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) must be issued within twenty eight days of the contravention. If it is not, they are time barred and it is void.
The PCN itself must state the date of the notice, the matters alleged, the grounds of the allegation, the charge must be paid not later than the last day of the twenty eight day period, any discount offered. Also there must be mention of the fact that if there have been no representations and the fine has not been paid, the Council will increase the fine. They must make clear the amount of the increase. The penalty charge must record that it was issued by post and the reasons for doing so. Not all are lawful.
A penalty charge notice (PCN) must also specify that representations may be made to the enforcement authority but that any received outside of the 28 days period may be disregarded. It must offer an address to which representations can be made and offer a list of the various forms of representations that may be accepted.
Many local councils do rely on parking tickets that do not comply and so are unlawfully issued.
Sections 54(1) and (2) RTOA 1988 provide that a constable in uniform who has reason to believe that a fixed penalty offence is being or has been committed may give a person a fixed penalty notice.
Only a constable in uniform can issue an FPN. There is debate over what being in uniform means and this is worth a challenge. The Courts have settled upon a definition of ‘being in uniform’ which allows the motorist to identify the officer as an officer.
If the offence involves obligatory endorsement then an FPN can only be issued if the person produces his licence and the number of points will not render him liable to disqualification. The driving licence must be surrendered voluntarily. The police have no power to seize it. The person cannot demand an FPN. It is entirely a matter of police discretion.
If the person is willing to receive a notice but cannot produce his licence immediately he can be asked to do so within seven days at a police station.
If a fine is paid by the end of the suspended period of enforcement then no proceedings can be brought against the person.
Whenever you are appealing parking fines, check these points before paying.
Check carefully the wording and details upon the parking ticket. Never neglect to do this. Many of them are unenforceable. Check that the details of your vehicle are correct. Check the wording on the ticket and the manner of issue is lawful. Check the parking legislation quoted and that it applies to your situation.
At the scene, check that the signs are road markings are visible and well maintained. Take photographs of them and their absence if possible.
Always ask the council to provide you with a traffic management order. Check that the parking restrictions contained therein match those they seek to enforce. If that fails, the ticket will fall.
If the parking ticket was issued by CCTV check for camera warning signs. Also check that the date of issue complies with the requirements. If it is more than 28 days after the contravention, they are time barred.
If you wish to appeal, parking on private land tickets you must act within the time frames you have been given. If you fail to do so, the Councils will get judgment against you without having to work. You should keep a copy of everything and send correspondence recorded delivery.
In most cases, appeals against parking fines can be won. Most appeals are upheld. But there is work involved.
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