Greetings all, first post here.
I am writing to inform you ladies and gents of a TOTAL VICTORY that I have achieved against those rogues at UKPC.
I have, in my hands, a letter from UKPC WITHDRAWING their charge unequivocally!
Yes, I'm aware that this is unusual having perused the postings here and I feel quite pleased!
I received a PCN at a Retail Park in Farnborough, Hampshire, having visited a particular store there. The charge was for "leaving the site" which I did not deny, however on the basis that UKPC failed to identify the driver of the car and were attempting to hold me as the owner liable, I immediately spotted through some research on the net that this was unenforceable.
Incidentally, the car park in question was 99% empty at the time I visited it and I objected to being charged on principle, especially as you HAVE to leave the site to get to any cash point facilities!
In order to achieve my aims of not paying the charge, I embarked on a highly aggressive strategy of communication. I immediately wrote to UKPC, the day I received the PCN and before they had ever written to me and demanded that they reverse the charge in a very lengthy letter. I highlighted several areas where I considered their charge to be unwarranted, unenforceable and illegal.
This gave me an immediate advantage because as soon as the charge did arrive in the post, I was able to accuse UKPC of ignoring my correspondence which would have placed them on the back foot in the event of any subsequent legal proceedings.
On receipt of the charge itself, I wrote a second, even longer letter, accusing them of failing to negotiate in good faith, ignoring my correspondence and it was at this stage that I began to CC my letters to various organisations, including the MD of the store I had been visiting at their head office. I argued that the actions of UKPC would cost the store future sales. I also argued that they were potentially complicit in the illegal activities of UKPC on the basis that the UKPC website indicated that their customers get a commission from each parking ticket they award!
I also informed UKPC that if they failed to respond to ANY or ALL of the points I was raising, that this would constitute an acceptance of my appeal and invalidate their charges. I finally informed them that I would be charging THEM for MY time in dealing with the matter. This put the onus on them to reply to all the legal issues I had raised, to which I knew they had no response and to which I knew they would not respond.
I received the standard one-line response, to which I immediately replied and indicated that on the basis that they had failed to answer each of my points in turn, that this implied acceptance of my appeal.
A week later, with no reply, I wrote to them again and suggested that their failure to respond within a timescale I had set was unacceptable and that I would be drawing all of this information to the Court in the event of litigation.
The next letter I got from them was longer, but it was still a standard reply which still failed to answer my relevant points and which still maintained their position. They also said they would not write to me again - I don't know if this was a sign that I was wearing them down or not, but that evening was quite bleak for me and I very nearly paid up there and then as they had extended my period for paying the lower charge.
And then I found this site.
It transpired that in fact the model you lay out here had been one very roughly followed by me, I had made all the relevant points but my correspondence was probably longer than it should have been. But by using the invaluable information here I was able to start quoting large swathes of legalese at UKPC and I sent them a 5-page letter warning them of dire consequences should they fail to reply.
However, as armed as I was with a new sense of resolution from this very site, the major breakthrough came when I got a letter from the store informing me that they too were not happy with the actions of UKPC but that the matter was out of their hands, appointed as they were by a managing agent for the site. The store mentioned that they had raised previous concerns in the past. They gave me the details of the managing agent for the site.
I could now attack UKPC and the managing agent on the grounds that the actions of UKPC were causing some embarrassment to the store itself. I.E. the actions of the managing agent’s agents were causing loss of sales for their customers. I demanded that the illegal actions of UKPC merited a withdrawal of the charge. I repeated my line to the managing agent – that they might be complicit in the illegal activities of UKPC as they were potentially the recipients of a commission (based on the UKPC’s OWN website) and insisted that they ask for the charge to be withdrawn (again, UKPC’s website indicates that their clients can do this).
Also, at this stage I was CC'ing no less than NINE people into my correspondence. I CC'd my letters to the local newspaper, the local MP, the BPA, the MD of the store at their head office, the customer relations lady at the store's head office who had replied to me, the landlord of the retail park, the local Trading Standards office, the BBC Watchdog program and the Hampshire Constabulary. To be honest, I was rather enjoying myself and looking forward to a day in Court I knew would probably never come.
Two days after this I received one final letter from UKPC demanding the money again - and it was here that I followed the strict advice of this site and I sent the standard "Cease and Desist" letter.
Today I have had three letters in the post.
1) A letter from UKPC withdrawing the charge in light of the comments I made.
2) A letter from the managing agent of the site indicating that they will ask UKPC to withdraw the charge (but they already have).
3) A letter from the BPA indicating that they are investigating the matter.
The upshot of this is that I believe my experiences demonstrate that if you shout loud enough and make enough counter-threats to UKPC they WILL back down. If you engage their customers in the correspondence and threaten to name them in any subsequent legal proceedings, they WILL back down. If you allege harassment and accuse them of claiming money by deception, they WILL back down.
These people can be beaten.
I am now sorely tempted to send them an invoice for my time on the basis that they have never answered this point and for compensation generally. By their own twisted logic, surely this implies acceptance of my terms under contract? What do you think? I've got the letter drafted - it even says if they pay me within 14 days I'll reduce the amount I'm claiming. Too cheeky?