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grandmastashi

Unfair parking charge - any suggestions would be appreciated

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Hi everyone,

 

A couple of weeks ago I received a PCN after accidentally entering the car park of a health centre, thinking it was the entrance to another store. I drove around the building and realised my mistake, but thought I recalled seeing the exit barrier down. In my panic thinking I was stuck on the site, I got out of the car and went looking for a number to call on one of the nearby signs. When I couldn’t find anything I walked around to the front of the building to look for a number, again nothing, so I carried on around and saw the barrier was open after all and I could get out. I ran immediately back to my car and left the site, I was there a total of 13 minutes seven seconds.

 

I returned from holiday on July 15 after two weeks away to receive a PCN demanding I pay £50 by July 17 for parking on the site otherwise further action against me would be taken. I was hugely angry as I never intended to abuse the parking facilities on the site, but panicked I paid the fine immediately. Having done elements of contract law as part of my degree, I was convinced that something didn’t add up with the terms and conditions the company said I ‘agreed’ when I entered the site.

 

The terms read: 60 minutes maximum stay. Monday to Friday 08:00 – 18:30. Permit holders only outside of surgery hours. You agree to pay a £50.00 Parking Charge (increasing to £70.00 if not paid within 14 days) to ______ when you allow your vehicle to remain on this site for longer than one hour at any time for any reason.

 

I realised that their terms and conditions only explicitly stated you could be fined for parking on site for longer than one hour (I was there for 13 minutes seven seconds). The terms do not state you can be fined for entering the site out of hours or without a permit.

 

I immediately wrote to the company, explaining the situation in detail and saying that there was no intention on my part to deliberately misuse the site, but stated that from my understanding they had no legal right to fine me because their terms and conditions weren’t clear and that I wanted to know the exact reason I was invoiced.

 

I received a reply on July 20 saying that it was incurred because I was on the site out of hours, however as I have pointed out under their t + c’s, they only state they will fine you for being there for longer than an hour (which I clearly wasn’t).

 

I want my money back, as I now realise i've been fleeced, can anyone suggest how I tackle my next letter to them? Would it be worth going to the health centre directly and explaining the situation?

 

Many thanks in advance for any help you can give.

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Ignore the parking co. Even if you took them to court and won - which shouldn't be too hard - you'll struggle to actually get the cash. These cowboys collect CCJs for fun.

 

Your best best is to pursue the healthcentre. Regardless of the unenforceability of the charge, if your situation meant you didn't even breach their alleged contract, it should be easier to chase the NHS.

 

Maybe go in person and talk to the healthcare staff and see if you can get some details of the manager. Might be best to try softly softly first and then play hard ball if they don't co-operate.

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I thought the same, I think actually going there in person and explaining what happened directly might be a better approach.

 

The reply to my letter arrived on cheap paper that had a logo badly photocopied at the top, which didn't exactly give them an air of professionalism. Am thinking I'll send one more reply back to them, just to see what kind of response I'll get.

 

Does anyone have any ideas of laws I could quote at them?

 

Thanks again.

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They're not professional - they're crooks. Surprised they replied at all.

 

No harm in sending them a last letter. They'll probably laugh at it, but so what.

 

Some legal help is here: Some help with a county court claim - FightBack Forums

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