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You've helped me once before (post4830039) with a 'parking charge notice'. I don't think I actually need help this time, but wanted to post on this site for general awareness in case there's a pattern in how this firm operates.

 

I parked in a car park where controls are effective 08:00-18:30. The PCN shows I entered the car park at 18:08:25. I purchased a ticket (which I still have) at 18:12, paying £2 for 20 minutes as I didn't have anything smaller. The ticket I purchased shows the expiry time as 18:32 (ie, 2 minutes after parking controls ceased to be effective).

 

 

Today I received a PCN from CEL citing 'Payment not made in accordance with the terms displayed on the signage'. I've gone back and checked the sign and I can't see any term that I failed to comply with:

- I paid the fee

- the ticket was purchased within 10 minutes of entering the car park

- I didn't exceed the maximum stay

 

Although I said I don't think I need help on this, any offered would be appreciated especially if you spot something I've missed. Otherwise I will email CEL advising the above facts and that if they don't withdraw the charge they must stipulate exactly which term or terms they believe I contravened, with the effective date of the charge being the date they reply.

 

Incidentally, I only received notification of the supposed offence 3 weeks later and it's pure luck that I still have the ticket. What does anyone do in the situation where no parking notice was issued at the time and the ticket has been discarded? It seems pretty outrageous to me that these parking cowboys have the law on their side in cases like this...

Car Park Signage.jpg

PCN2.jpg

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You are right about the fact they are the least honest of a buch of chancers.

 

 

Also note that the car park sign says Star park, which according to Companies House is nothing to do with CEL (in reality the same bandit runs both) so no contract with them can be formed anyway.

 

You could send them a letter denying any breach of contract by the driver (most important not to say that was you) and invite them to cut to the quick and sue you as you ahve your patment receipt in your hand as you write and will be happy to go for a costs order under CPR27 as their claim is vexatious and malicious.

 

Also let the landowners know that you are suffering from an attempted fraud by their agents and you hold them responsible and will name them as a co-respondent in any legal action brought about.

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Hi

In the small print of the first sign it states CEL's name and address however this should make no difference to the 'charge'

 

My suspicion is that they have started the timer at 18:08 and although your ticket shows 18:32, they will see it as having expired at 18:28.

 

So, no grace period at the end of the parking period as prescribed in the BPA rules.

You paid £2 and although the ticket only said 20 minutes, you could have bought two sets of 20 minutes. I remember a case a while back where a guy got a ticket for overstaying but had purchased two tickets to cover the entire time on site. He won his case at court. While yours is slightly similar, I doubt it will ever get that far as POPLA should cancel this.

 

I would send the letter EB has suggested however I would just state that no breach has occurred thereby either cancel the ticket or issue a POPLA code. Don't give them any ammunition to bash you with.


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Ok, thanks for the advice. Below is the email I sent them:

 

"Dear Civil Enforcement Ltd

 

I was mystified to receive the above vexatious claim which was bereft of any specific detail relating to the alleged parking incident.

 

I have the ticket that was purchased and have checked the sign for the car park, and there is clearly no breach of contract with you or anyone else. You should either cancel the ‘charge’ or issue a POPLA code."

I received an automated reply saying they will reply in writing within 28 days (!) & will update here when I receive it.

 

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dont

invite them to offer a POPLA code,

they get into trouble if they dont

so let them do the running and offer you one.

 

Never use email,

always send letter in post with POP from post office.

 

They now have a method of harassing you for free.

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I now have a letter informing me that my appeal was unsuccessful. The only clarification on the reason for the ticket is that it was issued "for exceeding the parking time paid for". The letter also states that "further details as to why the appeal was unsuccessful can be found on the attached pages". None of the 36 generic FAQ type responses offer any explanation relevant for this case. They've kindly reset the clock on the 14 days to pay at the reduced rate, which is a nice touch, and given me a POPLA code. They've also explained that I have the right to apply via POPLA to the Ombudsman Services (who administer POPLA...)

 

 

To recap, there are 4 relevant terms on the car park sign:

 

 

1. "£1 - 20 minutes": I paid for 20 minutes

2. "Payment must be made within 10 minutes of arrival". Arrived at 18:08:25 (as per the parking charge notice) and paid at 18:12 (as per ticket), well within 10 minutes.

3. "These terms apply Monday to Sunday 8AM - 6:30PM": Ticket purchased at 18:12, expired at 18:32.

4. "Maximum Stay 4 Hours": I entered at 18:08:25 and left at 20:18:17, ie 2hrs 10mins

 

 

I'll lodge an appeal with POPLA today & all being equal expect that they will just cancel CEL's parking charge notice (which they refer to as an "Enforcement Notice" in their rejection letter).

 

 

If anyone wants to offer any advice on how I can lodge the POPLA appeal in such a way that it helps flag problems with the legislation that allows companies like CEL to harass and generate revenue I'm happy to include that and pursue it further.

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yep, go to POPLA because it will cost them money anyway. Their rejection letter gave you the details of how to appeal? If not that is a breach in itself.

POPLA are paid for by the parking companies and have a very limited remit inasmuch as to what they can and cant do the old POLA applied the law, OmbudsmanServices Ltd dances to the tune of those who pay them.

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POPLA replied today advising that CEL doesn't wish to contest my appeal, which really wasn't a surprise as they had no grounds for rejecting my initial appeal to them in the first place.

 

 

Given that they really do seem to be a bunch of rogues, I may just become a serial 'offender' and follow exactly the same scenario a few more times...

 

 

Thanks for the advice EB & SF. Donation on it's way...

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Glad we could help. CEL knew they hadn't a leg to stand on. I will update this thread to show the result.


If you are asked to deal with any matter via private message, PLEASE report it.

Everything I say is opinion only. If you are unsure on any comment made, you should see a qualified solicitor

Please help CAG. Order this ebook. Now available on Amazon. Please click HERE

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glad it panned out OK. If you do get another demand for the same type of thing it might well be worth considering suing them for breaches of the DPA but for the moment by happy with your result.

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