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Parking Charge Notice (PCN)


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#1 NWest

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 09:27 PM

Mother in law recently received a Parking Charge Notice (PCN) for being parked where she shouldnt, from a private company. It was not from the council. It was from SIP Car Parks Ltd. What i want to know is, is the fine legal and enforceable, and are the bailiffs likely to attend if she does not correspond. Or is it just a toothless tiger, where they expect people to panic and just pay. Anyone had any experience with them?

#2 Ryk

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 11:27 PM

I thought you were in the job. You should know this ;-)

#3 NWest

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 06:04 AM

Contrary to public perception, being a Police Officer doesnt mean i am the font of ALL knowledge. I like to think i know a lot, like the capital of uzbekistan, where the titanic was built, the names of the largest cranes in Europe, what TARDIS stands for and why polar bears dont eat penguins, BUT i know nothing about contract law (if i did i wouldnt be doing this) and i cant pick lottery numbers for toffee!

PS i did ask a council traffic warden, and guess what he didnt know either.

#4 Ryk

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 10:01 AM

Well think about it, they have no way of knowing who was driving the car at the time, and who parked the car They cant use 172, so they have no way of finding out. They only know the reg keeper. So really, She could send them a letter saying that she is the reg keeper, but was not driving the car at the material time, and that they should carry out their own enquiries into who was driving her car, and since they have no power under 172, they have no way of finding this out and they would not persue it. Just an idea.....

#5 PintOfKittens

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 12:23 PM

Have a read of http://forums.pepipo...showtopic=46975 - Dealing with "tickets" from Private Parking Companies (PPCs), Including what BBC Watchdog had to say about PPCs

#6 Sectioned Detection

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 01:45 PM

I'd wait till she receives a letter. Because they have request the owners address from the DVLA and most of the time they can't be bothered.

#7 SWJohnson

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 06:31 PM

These so called parking tickets are dealt with under the civil law rather than criminal, so proceedings for non payment would theoretically be in the county court.

In practice, many people have found that the best thing to do is to ignore all communication from whoever has issued the 'ticket'. They get details from DVLA, and write to the registered keeper. The claim would be based on the law of contract, so for a claim to be successful the claimant would have prove that the defendant intended to enter into a legally binding contract with them. This can get complicated (for the claimant) if the person who parked the car was someone other than the registered keeper, because inlike with criminal law, the registered keeper is not obliged to name the driver at the time of the alleged 'offence'.

Most of the advice I've seen about this is to ignore it and it'll go away.

There seems to be lots of info about this subject on PePiPoo (FightBack Forums > Queries > Parking and Decriminalised Notices)

#8 NWest

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Posted 17 August 2010 - 04:23 PM

Ok, shes now had the NTO (Notice To Owner)letter, and got the red letter today CN (Charge Notice). They are now asking for more money and stating DO NOT IGNORE THIS NOTICE. They are saying that if not payed within 14 days then they may register the charge as a debt at the County Court, and if remains unpaid then passed on to their debt recovery agents. She getting twitchy feet as the letters are becoming more formal, more capital letters and more colour now! Any ideas?

#9 Sectioned Detection

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Posted 17 August 2010 - 04:59 PM

Send a letter saying that she wasn't the driver and doesn't wish to disclose who was. They will send another threatening letter about debt collectors. She should reply that as she is disputing the claim they can't threaten her with debt collectors and as a result the letter is deemed to be harassment. Should they send another letter she will contact the police to make a formal complaint.

Also they can't register it as a debt if she challenges the ticket they first have to take it to court in order to win the claim THEN it can be seen as a debt. Remember it the driver NOT the owner who's liable.

#10 Bart

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Posted 17 August 2010 - 05:08 PM

Watch this and it will give you your answer. Posted Image


Watchdog on BBC1


#11 JohnRich2010

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Posted 17 August 2010 - 05:28 PM

NOTICE ?

I would NOTICE them back, making sure they understand it is a NOTICE and not a letter, Informing them that you are replying to there notice, and am noticing them that they have absolutely no contract with, or authority over you as far as you are aware.
And you will however, happily pay if you are obliged to do so. And as such you require all proof that you are obliged to do so, in the form of either acts of law and proof you are liable, or a copy of any and all contractual agreements you have with them.

They have no agreement with you, they never will, there delusional unless they can point to a law and have proof you are liable, or can prove to you that you have an agreement with them.

Also, SWJohnson, This may be because it was a freeman I heard it from, Is a NOTICE not an offer for contract that is accepted by failure to object where a determined outcome is offered and no challenge made? Like Noticing them back with terms of acceptance. Silence is consent is it not??

#12 SWJohnson

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 10:37 AM

Ok, shes now had the NTO (Notice To Owner)letter, and got the red letter today ............. She getting twitchy feet as the letters are becoming more formal, more capital letters and more colour now! Any ideas?


Yes, I'd still ignore it. No matter how bright the ink, or what colour it is. The whole idea of them making it sound dramatic is to scare people into paying. They are a commercial business, not a law enforcement agency. If I sent her a penalty charge notice, in red ink, with "pay now or you'll be in trouble !" written on it, would she pay it ? I hope not.

Is a NOTICE not an offer for contract that is accepted by failure to object ..........Silence is consent is it not??

No, because that would be like saying 'no answer means yes'. If it was true, I could email an ebay seller who was advertising a car and say I'll give you £50 for it. If I don't hear from you by the close of business today, I'll take that as your agreement to sell it to me at that price. It's not going to happen.

#13 JohnRich2010

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 03:06 PM

He who does not object, consents. Does he not?

In contract law a contract can be verbal or written, silence is consent according to our law, it is even a legal maxim is it not? With written NOTICES there must be reasonable time for an objection to be made before silence can be accepted as consent, or specific action taken to accept the contract.

If I inform someone in person that I am coming to cut there grass next Tuesday at 8 and it will be £10 unless you tell me not to by Tuesday mid day, then it is reasonable to take no objection as consent, as has been proven in our courts to such extent that is is a legal maxim.

Where an offer of contract is made by written NOTICE on a sign or letter, it is an offer of contract accepted by complying with the terms stated upon it, I.E. Parking.
If you send a friend a letter with a proposition, giving him 30 days to respond with any objections, then after 30 days his lack of objection in the form of silence becomes a binding contract does it not?

Of course taken to civil court there is the defense that you never received it, but the burden of proof is upon you to prove you did not receive any notice, not the party claiming you have defaulted on a contract because in civil cases you are not innocent until proven guilty and the court works in a different way to a jury trial.

Just wondering what response you will give, as thats the argument I was given when I told someone they were wrong for the reason you said.. Essentially I guess there argument was that reasonable time must be given but silence is consent.

Edited by JohnRich2010, 18 August 2010 - 04:25 PM.


#14 Mossycat

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 11:01 PM

If and I say IF we accept that the driver of the car entered into a contract with the parking management company and parked on land owned or managed by them, then if the driver of the vehicle does not comply with the terms and conditions of the car-park then they have committed a breach of contract.

However, the most that the party who has suffered can claim back is what they have actually lost, and NOT the punitive amount as these parking companies try and claim.

If there is a charge to park in a car park (say £2 per hour) and a person pays the £2 and then stays for longer than an hour (eg over stays by between 1 minute and 59 minutes) the most the land owner (or management company) can sue for is £2. They need to show that they have actually suffred a financial loss. If they try and claim for anything more then it would be thrown out of a Civil Court as punitive damages.

The defining case precedent is The Dunlop Case, (Google it if you want the finer details).

Parking Management Companies are very well aware of this, hence their reluctance to take people to Court, after sending a few threatening letters they will give up, so ignore anything. If you really want to be squeaky clean then send them anything they have lost (ie what it would have cost you to park there).


As for the earlier post that stated contracts can be verbal as well as written, that is true, however if I say to you I'm coming to kow your lawn on Thursday unless you tell me not to and then you don't tell me not to, that is NOT a legally binding contract. For a contract to be binding it must have 'consideration', in simple terms consideration is the price that each party pays for the promise of the other, since the person who owned the lawn gave nothing of value to the person offering to mow it, then no contract was established. If a civil case was launched under the circumstances you quoted it would be struck out (read that as laughed out of Court).

Mossycat

#15 JohnRich2010

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Posted 19 August 2010 - 12:46 AM

Thx Mossycat, Doesn't surprise me as it was a freeman that told me thats how NOTICES work.

Edited by JohnRich2010, 19 August 2010 - 12:46 AM.


#16 MetPlod

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Posted 23 August 2010 - 09:30 PM

One of these parking company's had the balls to send one through to a marked police vehicle. I wrote them a very nice letter advising that my firm force service would not be paying and they should perhaps consider being a little more careful with the images as one might consider that the same image used twice to demonstrate entry and exit (except one had been cropped) to be fraud. I got a nice letter back saying that they had made an honest mistake and would waive the fee. Awfully nice I thought as I had no intention of asking my officer to pay!

#17 NWest

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 08:42 PM

Had another letter adding another £15 admin charge and advising that must be paid or may consider going to court and may affect credit rating. Shes getting nervous, but the watchdog clip calmed her a bit!

#18 truster

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 03:00 PM

Mother in law recently received a Parking Charge Notice (PCN) for being parked where she shouldnt, from a private company. It was not from the council. It was from SIP Car Parks Ltd. What i want to know is, is the fine legal and enforceable, and are the bailiffs likely to attend if she does not correspond. Or is it just a toothless tiger, where they expect people to panic and just pay. Anyone had any experience with them?



I am very disappointed in view of the....''for being parked where she shouldn’t,'' ...admittance of guilt, that nobody has advised you to tell her to pay. It must be frustrating for you guys to get a ''fair cop'' and then have the perp deny it. So why do you advise others to do what you hate being done to you?

Tell her to pay.

#19 Bart

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 06:25 PM

Would you pay an illegally issued ticket?

#20 truster

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 09:35 PM

Would you pay an illegally issued ticket?


I wouldn't receive a ticket, because I'm a law abiding, considerate person who wouldn't park where I shouldn't park. I do 5 -600 business miles a week and need to park up outside or near to my clients homes. I always insure I’m not causing a problem for others and would never, ever dream of parking on private land. My conscience wouldn’t allow it.

I'm even more disappointed that you should pursue this line of questioning. We have a moral as well as legal responsibility. If more people upheld their moral responsibilities there would be less people breaking the law.




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