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K20500

Smart Parking ANPR PCN 2016 - AYR, Scotland . DR+now Gladstones Court Letter

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Hi there,

 

First of all I apologise because I know this site must see so many of these threads.

 

I am trying hard to help my mum with parking charges she was advised by many to ignore initially.

 

She had received letter after letter and is terrified of bad credit or court.

 

The parking charge came from Matalan car park in Ayr, Scotland.

 

My mum took my elderly gran there and parked in a disabled bay with the blue badge on display on 11/03/17.

 

My mum had no idea you were required to pay for disabled parking and spent approximately half an hour in matalan.

 

She received her first letter on 16/03/17 and has kept every letter.

 

The initial letter has picture of her car registration entering and leaving.

 

A few threatening letters later and now we have a letter from Gladstones solicitors threatening possible court action in the next 6 years and a bad credit rating.

We have two weeks (one week left) to either pay up £140 or face the possible consequences.

 

I would be forever grateful if someone could give me advice on where we go from here?

Do we pay the full £140?

Do we fight to pay the original fine?

Can we appeal?

 

Whatever it is I am willing to write letters,

make a 1000 phone calls or pay the full fine myself just to get rid of this worry for my mum.

 

I dont think ignoring it is going to help anyone in this situation.

 

My local trading standards weren't much use.

 

She said they had never taken anyone to our local court, but eventually they would.

 

We could continue to ignore or pay.

 

I will pay the full thing before ignoring it but something is telling me there may be something else we can do,

 

perhaps pay the initial fine?

 

If anyone out there has any advice or experience could you please help?

 

Thank you so much

Edited by K20500

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First things first, there is no need to panic. Can you confirm you have not replied to any of these letters? No phone calls or emails?

 

Secondly, are you able to post an image of the very first letter you received? This should be called something along the lines of a Parking Charge Notice and will be made to look like a “parking ticket”.

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Bear in mind this was parking in Scotland.

 

OP, does your Mum live (and is the car's registered keeper's address) in Scotland?. If so, they have no chance of trying to bring any action in the English courts, and would be bound to use the Scottish ones.

Has your Mum at any time identified the driver?. (if she hasn't, DON'T!)

The law in Scotland is different to England, they can't go after the "keeper' of the vehicle, only the driver.

 

If she never identifies the driver (and she is under NO obligation to do so), they can go whistle!.

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/scotland/law-and-courts/parking-tickets/appealing-parking-tickets/parking-tickets-on-private-land-s/

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Thank you so much for replying.

 

There has been no correspondence with anyone at any time since the letters started no.

 

Trying to attach the first letter received now but it keeps coming up with an error message. Will keep trying.

 

Thank you for the link,

she hasn't identified the driver at all and she lives in Scotland.

 

What concerns me is her having to go to court though, even with that defence.

 

Is there any other way to post this photo?

 

I am getting a font error every time I try.

 

Again thank you for your time and replies BazzaS.

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Going to try convert to pdf.

 

Hopefully this works. This is the very first letter.

PDF UPLOAD.pdf

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As Bazza said earlier, this is in Scotland. The registered keeper is not required to identify the driver. The registered keeper is not automatically liable for the ticket, either.

 

Now, does your Mum live in Scotland?

 

Others will be keen to point out that all the threatening letters you have 5hus far received will state that they might take you to court, or they could launch civil action etc....... not once will you see a definite we will take you to court, we are going to sue you.....

 

It is very unlikely it will come to that and your Mum’s credit rating could only ever be affected after such a court case so just relax for now and allow the real experts to have a look at your situation and advise accordingly....

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As others have said, the first thing is not to panic. The whole point of these threatening letters is to make motorists think they'll be hung drawn & quartered and therefore it's better to cough up. Yet the vast majority of the threats come from paper tigers who will do nothing in the end.

 

The facts that your mum has had the good sense to not communicate with these conmen and not identify the driver, plus the fact she lives in Scotland, puts her in a excellent position legal-wise and the parking company in a pretty useless one.

 

Think about it. If they are in such a good position regarding the law, why haven't they already taken your mum to court? Why do they keep sending letter after letter rather than getting on with actual court action? 'Cos they know that if the case ever did get to court they'd be thrashed.


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Have also realised I said 2017 above. It was actually in 2016.

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She can’t stop them issuing a court claim, I could issue a court claim against her (if I knew her name & address) even though I’d be daft to do so as I have nothing to sue her for.

Similarly, they are on a hiding to nothing.

They’ll know it, too, making a court claim vanishingly unlikely, and easily beaten if they were stupid enough to try.

 

So they hassle with carefully crafted letters (so they never say anything untruthful, but never actually commit to a precise statement of what they are and aren’t allowed to do!)

 

Tell your Mum to be strong. Whilst I can’t promise they won’t try Court it is very unlikely : they know they would lose.

What is more likely is they’ll keep sending (ever increasing!) demands, or pass it on to an equally toothless DCA : Tell your Mum to stay strong, and you can always come back here for more reassurance.

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So after 19 months they are still sending out threatagrams, but never see to get round to this feared court action!


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

 Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

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Thanks FTMDave,

I completely get what you are saying.

 

We had the two letters from Smart parking.

After this there was another 8 letters from Debt Recovery Plus and now from Gladstones solicitors.

 

The last thing we want is her credit rating being affected or her having to go to court.

 

She doesn't keep very well so can't be dealing with that extra stress.

 

Was hoping for a way out without it having to get to that.

 

Do you know if it will impact on her credit at the minute?

 

I think shes thinking about paying it.

 

Its ridiculous, but there doesn't seem to be another way out except to wait and see if they carry it through.

 

She feels they are going to chase her all the way.

 

Yeah 19 months. I think its the solicitors letter thats scared her.

 

Then again this might be there last ditch effort to get that money.

 

I really appreciate you all for taking the time to write a comment.

 

I'm going to let her read these replies and let her decide what she wants to do.

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ignore the car park is in Scotland

 

stuff all they can do.

 

it cant harm her credit file

 

if she pays

 

all she will do is pay for their drinks down the pub tonight.

 

one last point

IT IS NOT A FINE

 

its a private car parking Speculative invoice

because she entered into some imaginary contract by parking there.

 

 

 

 

dx


..

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To affect her credit rating they’d have to:

1) take her to court (unlikely to happen)

2) Win in Court (won’t happen!)

 

Even then, if someone loses in Court, they can pay the judgment sum quickly and it doesn’t appear on their credit file. (It won’t happen to your Mum, but this knowledge may remove what you have said is her major concern!)

 

Don’t let your Mum fall for their pressure tactics. Hopefully the answers here will reassure her.

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note that ther letter invites you to name the driver as they know there is no keeper liability.

what they dont mention is that they have obtained the keeper details illegally as they know there is no keeper liability in Scotland.

Funny how they miss this bit out, could it be they are just a bunch of conmen or that their business model relies on lies, distraction and obfuscation?

 

Also note that they say they could be the landowner, occupier or agent.

Well, they should know which it is but again wont say because 2 out of 3 have no rights whatsoever, another bit of misdirection at best or another lie in plain language.

 

Post up the Gladstones letter because they might try court on the basis that 85% of people dont defend

so a sharp response would be advisable but we need to be clear about the content of their threatogram to decide what to say.

Edited by honeybee13
Paras

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so they want you to pay a company that has nothing to do with anything

even a sum of money that has nothing to do with anything.

 

This is not a lba so you can safely ignore this,

the same as you can ignore any other begging letter

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Yeah just scaremongering over court at some point in the next 6 years. After all this wonderful advice, mum has chosen to ignore. If we ever end up being called to court, I know where to come. Thank you again to you all.

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they will have to send a proper LBA before they issue court proceedings and this lot dont know how to write a proper one despite being the parking world's greatest and cleverest solicitors. by their own admission

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