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LPS EXCESS CHARGE NOTICE, PRIVATE PARKING FINE
sarahlhug82
post Thu, 7 May 2015 - 12:45
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Hi

I was hoping for some advice. I received an excess parking fine from a company called LPS on Monday 4th May. We were 19 minutes late back to the car on a trip to the Sand Dunes at Merthyr Mawr due to us having to change my young son's nappy before we left. When we got back to the car we found the ticket (we were one of many in the car park) and were shocked to see that for 19 minutes they were expecting an £85 fine or £50 if we pay within 14 days. This I feel is a very excessive amount of money for this error in judgement, money that we don't have to spare. I have taken some advice from friends, and all have said don't pay and ignore, however I am very unsure about doing this as there must be a way that they can force people to pay up or there would be no point issuing the tickets in the first place. The company is part of the BPS and nothing to do with the council or the police. We were late and we were at fault however £85/50 is a large amount of money to charge someone for a quiet carpark on a Bank Holiday Monday. The case can be appealed directly to them but this involves then disclosing personal details and I am sure will be rejected. Any advice as to what to do will be gratefully received. Many thanks!


This post has been edited by sarahlhug82: Thu, 7 May 2015 - 12:51
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Dennis Basher
post Tue, 16 Jun 2015 - 12:38
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Something along these lines would do as an introduction to your challenge letter.

Dear Sir,

Parking Charge Notice 01234567: Vehicle Registration AA11AAA

I refer to the above-detailed Parking Charge Notice (“PCN”) dated [ ] issued by Local Parking Security Limited (“LPS”) to me as a Notice to Keeper (“NTK”) in respect of an alleged breach of Parking Terms and Conditions at [ ] on [ ].
I confirm that I am the keeper of this vehicle for the purpose of the corresponding definition under Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (“POFA”) and I write to formally challenge this PCN, setting out below why the charge is not valid.

This will then lead you into your various appeal points. At this stage, you don't need to be too specific with the details of these points; LPS are likely to reject your appeal regardless of what you say and so you can keep the really detailed stuff for when you escalate the matter to POPLA.

With regards to the NTK's non-compliance with POFA, you can just say something like:

In order to be able to be able to invoke Keeper liability, LPS’s NTK had to comply with the strict requirements of POFA. However, there are a number of reasons why LPS’s NTK did not comply; I suggest that you read carefully through the details of Paragraph 8 of Schedule 4 of POFA to understand why.



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sarahlhug82
post Tue, 16 Jun 2015 - 13:03
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Thank you very much, I will have a go at drafting a letter.
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sarahlhug82
post Wed, 17 Jun 2015 - 13:10
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Thanks for your help so far this is a first draft of our appeal letter to LPS. Any comments would be gratefully received.

Local Parking Security Ltd
PO Box 6321
Warwick
CV34 9QB

1 Annoyed Road,
Crosstown,
Crazyshire
GE7 83NT

16th June 2015

Dear Sir / Ma’am

Parking Charge Notice 12345678 VRN XXXX XXX

I refer to the above detailed Parking Charge Notice (“PCN”) dated 10th June 2015 issued by Local Parking Security Limited (“LPS”) to me as a Notice to Keeper (“NTK”) in respect of an alleged breach of Parking Terms and Conditions at Candleston Car Park, Merthyr Mawr on Xth May 2015.

I confirm that I am the keeper of this vehicle for the purpose of the corresponding definition under Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (“POFA”) and I write to formally challenge this PCN, setting out below why the charge is not valid.

1. The signs are inadequate and do not form a contract. This can be illustrated by examining the photographs taken by LPS’s agent to support the issue of the PCN. The images of the vehicle cover a 270° field of view within which no signs can be identified. In addition the time the latest image of the vehicle was taken was a o’clock, the images of the signs were recorded at d and e o’clock, this bc minute difference indicates that the frequency and positioning of the signs are inadequate.

2. The amount (if it is found to form a contract) is unconscionable and extortionate (£85 before discount and £50 after) and bears no relation to any fine issued by a statutory undertaking neither before or after discounts apply.

3. The issuers LPS are not the landowners and have no authority to contract with the motorist.

4. In order to be able to be able to invoke Keeper liability, LPS’s NTK had to comply with the strict requirements of POFA. However, there are a number of reasons why LPS’s NTK did not comply; I suggest that you read carefully through the details of Paragraph 8 of Schedule 4 of POFA to understand why.

This letter constitutes my formal appeal regarding the PCN. I intend to escalate the matter to Parking On Private Land Appeals (“POPLA”) if the above justification is not considered and resolve the PCN.

Yours sincerely
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Jlc
post Wed, 17 Jun 2015 - 13:12
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QUOTE (sarahlhug82 @ Wed, 17 Jun 2015 - 14:10) *
2. The amount (if it is found to form a contract) is unconscionable and extortionate extravagant



--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information, SAR=Subject Access Request

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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cabbyman
post Wed, 17 Jun 2015 - 13:38
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QUOTE (sarahlhug82 @ Wed, 17 Jun 2015 - 14:10) *
This letter constitutes my formal appeal regarding the PCN. Should you fail to cancel this invoice, I require the necessary POPLA code in order that I may escalate the matter to Parking On Private Land Appeals (“POPLA”).

Yours sincerely



--------------------
Cabbyman 10 PPCs 0
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sarahlhug82
post Mon, 6 Jul 2015 - 13:17
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Hello lovely people!

As predicted my appeal to LPS was rejected within 48 hours of sending the letter we had this reply:

"Thank you for your appeal against the parking charge notice issued by us to you on 4th May 2015. Having carefully considered the evidence provided by you we regret your appeal has been unsuccessful for the following reasons:

- Parking longer than the period paid for

You now have a number of options:

1) Pay the parking charge Notice at the reduced amount of £50 within 14 days
2) Make an appeal to POPLA by making your appeal online or completing the enclosed form.
3) If you choose to do nothing we will seek to recover the monies owed to us via our debt recovery procedures and may proceed with court action against you

Please note you have 28 days from the date of this email to make your appeal to POPLA."


They have enclosed a POPLA appeals form to complete but I will do it online.

How do I now proceed? Do I need to edit my appeals letter and make a more detailed appeal?

I am a little worried as I have seen a number of people on this forum have had appeals rejected recently and wonder if I should just give in and pay if I'm going to lose my appeal anyway?

Any advice gratefully received!! :-) Many Thanks!
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SchoolRunMum
post Mon, 6 Jul 2015 - 13:30
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Are you saying people have lost POPLA appeals - not that I've seen but then I haven't posted here for a while as I've been busy. No-one should currently be losing any well-written POPLA appeal seeing as the Lead Adjudicator has adjourned them all until November if the appeal points in the Barry Beavis case are the only matters left to consider on the face of it. In other words if a person says 'no GPEOL' (as normal in a POPLA appeal) and LPS say 'Yep but we don't care, look at the Beavis case' then the case is stayed if there's nothing else to decide it in favour of the motorist.

None are currently lost - certainly they should not be! If anyone has, they've either appealed badly or been up against a landowning PPC with a good line in 'this is a contractual fee for parking'.

So Google 'POPLA LPS' and look for examples of wording used by posters on forums within the last year - but make sure it's the right LPS as there are two.

You do NOT fill in the form, as you say, do it online once you've researched some examples and posted your draft here for comments. If you get this bit right, a keeper can't lose:

QUOTE
In order to be able to be able to invoke Keeper liability, LPS’s NTK had to comply with the strict requirements of POFA. However, there are a number of reasons why LPS’s NTK did not comply; I suggest that you read carefully through the details of Paragraph 8 of Schedule 4 of POFA to understand why.


Make sure you also have 'no GPEOL' and 'no landowner authority' as well as anything about the signage without talking about who was driving.

This post has been edited by SchoolRunMum: Mon, 6 Jul 2015 - 13:32
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nosferatu1001
post Mon, 6 Jul 2015 - 13:32
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Can I ask which threads you have seen where POPLA have rejected? I've not seen any, just usual IAS rubbish...

You

a) look for good appeals on here
b) edit to match your circumstances exactly. Clarify anything you are unsure of
c) post here for critique

but before ALL of that, go to the parking cowboys website and check your POPLA code, to see EXACTLY how long you have

Even if you lose at POPLA you dont have to pay. It is still your choice. the decision has no power over you.
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Dennis Basher
post Mon, 6 Jul 2015 - 22:57
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It's of no real surprise that LPS rejected your appeal. However, you now have a great opportunity to kill this off once and for all at the POPLA stage. Don't forget to stay in "keeper mode" in order to take advantage of LPS' failure to comply with POFA 2012.

You can now go into more detail on this point for POPLA's benefit. With regard to our company's recent challenge to LPS, I had drafted up the following paragraph to include in our POPLA appeal:

The Operator’s Notice to Keeper ("NTK") did not comply with Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 ("POFA")

In order to be able to be able to invoke Keeper liability, the Operator’s NTK had to comply with the strict requirements of Schedule 4 of POFA; I set out below a non-exhaustive list of reasons why it failed to do so.

• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (a), the NTK did not specify a period of parking to which the notice related; it merely stated a discrete date and time of issue.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (b), the NTK did not inform the keeper that the driver is required to pay parking charges in respect of the specified period of parking and that the parking charges have not been paid in full.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (e), the NTK did not contain a statement that the creditor did not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver, inviting the keeper (i) to pay the unpaid parking charges; or (ii) if the keeper was not the driver of the vehicle, to notify the creditor of the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver and to pass the notice on to the driver.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (f), the NTK did not contain a statement warning the keeper that if, after the period of 28 days beginning with the day after that on which the notice is given, (i) the amount of the unpaid parking charges specified has not been paid in full, and (ii) the creditor does not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver, the creditor will (if all the applicable conditions under Schedule 4 of POFA are met) have the right to recover from the keeper so much of that amount as remains unpaid.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (h), the NTK did not identify the creditor and specify how and to whom payment or notification to the creditor may be made.

Consequently, the Operator has forfeited any right to utilise POFA to hold the vehicle's keeper liable for this charge.


As it turned out, we didn't need to use it - LPS cancelled our charge within two days of receiving our initial challenge and didn't even bother trying to escalate to POPLA. smile.gif

Although I'm pretty sure that your NTK is of exactly the same format as the one we received, you may wish to cross check the list of reasons why the NTK didn't comply with POFA 2012.

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bidderman1969
post Tue, 7 Jul 2015 - 09:49
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QUOTE (Dennis Basher @ Mon, 6 Jul 2015 - 22:57) *
It's of no real surprise that LPS rejected your appeal. However, you now have a great opportunity to kill this off once and for all at the POPLA stage. Don't forget to stay in "keeper mode" in order to take advantage of LPS' failure to comply with POFA 2012.

You can now go into more detail on this point for POPLA's benefit. With regard to our company's recent challenge to LPS, I had drafted up the following paragraph to include in our POPLA appeal:

The Operator’s Notice to Keeper ("NTK") did not comply with Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 ("POFA")

In order to be able to be able to invoke Keeper liability, the Operator’s NTK had to comply with the strict requirements of Schedule 4 of POFA; I set out below a non-exhaustive list of reasons why it failed to do so.

• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (a), the NTK did not specify a period of parking to which the notice related; it merely stated a discrete date and time of issue.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (b), the NTK did not inform the keeper that the driver is required to pay parking charges in respect of the specified period of parking and that the parking charges have not been paid in full.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (e), the NTK did not contain a statement that the creditor did not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver, inviting the keeper (i) to pay the unpaid parking charges; or (ii) if the keeper was not the driver of the vehicle, to notify the creditor of the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver and to pass the notice on to the driver.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (f), the NTK did not contain a statement warning the keeper that if, after the period of 28 days beginning with the day after that on which the notice is given, (i) the amount of the unpaid parking charges specified has not been paid in full, and (ii) the creditor does not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver, the creditor will (if all the applicable conditions under Schedule 4 of POFA are met) have the right to recover from the keeper so much of that amount as remains unpaid.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (h), the NTK did not identify the creditor and specify how and to whom payment or notification to the creditor may be made.

Consequently, the Operator has forfeited any right to utilise POFA to hold the vehicle's keeper liable for this charge.


As it turned out, we didn't need to use it - LPS cancelled our charge within two days of receiving our initial challenge and didn't even bother trying to escalate to POPLA. smile.gif

Although I'm pretty sure that your NTK is of exactly the same format as the one we received, you may wish to cross check the list of reasons why the NTK didn't comply with POFA 2012.


that is a brilliant reply
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sarahlhug82
post Fri, 10 Jul 2015 - 13:03
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Thanks all so much!

How's this? Do I need to put in the reasons we were late back to the car? e.g. we were changing my little boy? Also will the Beavis case mean that the pre-estimate of loss argument is out the window? I believe this to be our strongest argument... thanks in advance.

POPLA REF XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

CAR REG XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

As the registered keeper of the car mentioned above I would like to appeal and have cancelled the parking charge notice issued by Local Parking Security Ltd for a number of reasons outlined below:

1. Local Parking Security Ltd has no contractual authority
2. The charge is punitive and not a genuine pre-estimate of loss
3. Keeper Liability Requirements and the Protection of Freedom Act
4. No Contract was entered into between Local Parking Security Ltd and the Driver or Registered keeper
5. Unfair terms of contract
6. Without a contract
7. Non BPA compliant signage


1. Local Parking Security Ltd has no contractual authority

In the notices they have sent me Local Parking Security Ltd have not shown any evidence that they have any proprietary interest in the car park/land in question. Also they have not provided me with any evidence that they are lawfully entitled to demand money from either driver or keeper. It would seem that they do not own or have any interest or assignment of title in the land. I can only assume instead they are agents for the owner/legal occupier instead. I submit therefore that they do not have the necessary legal right to make the charge for a vehicle using the car park. I require Local Parking Security Ltd to provide a full, up-to date and signed/dated contract with the landowner (a statement saying someone has seen the contract is not enough). The contract needs to state that Local Parking Security Ltd are entitled to pursue matters such as these through the issue of Excess Charge Notices and in the courts in their own name. I clarify that this should be an actual copy and not just a document that claims a contract/agreement exists.

2. The charge is punitive and not a genuine pre-estimate of loss

Judging by the wording of the parking charge notice this is clearly an attempt to enforce this charge under paragraph B 19.5 of the BPA Code of Practice in which it states that this must be a genuine pre-estimate of the loss that may have incurred. Local Parking Security Ltd claim that my car was in the car park for 19 minutes over the paid time, whilst the tariff to park for the day is £2.50. They are asking for a charge of £85 for this penalty. This alone is far more than the cost to the landowner could have loss for the time my car was said to have parked there. The charge is clearly punitive and disproportionate to any alleged breach of contract.

Furthermore as the operator is clearly seeking to impose a penalty, it is their sole responsibility to provide a full breakdown as proof of the pre-estimated loss of £85. As of this point they have made no effort to provide me with a breakdown of the costs they allegedly incurred. To justify the charge of £85, I require Local Parking Security Ltd to back up their decision by providing POPLA with a full and detailed financial breakdown of the pre-estimated costs they have suffered as a result of the charge in question. I would like to add that normal costs of running their business (their day to day costs like provision of parking, enforcement, signage, salaries, rent etc) must not be included in the breakdown as Local Parking Security Ltd would need to pay these irrespective of this alleged charge. Parking enforcement costs cannot possibly represent any loss resulting from an alleged breach of contract, as these costs would need to be paid whether the breach had happened or not.

In summary not only is the £85 charge completely disproportionate meaning that it is punitive and is breaking the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1997, but there can be no loss shown at all as no pre-estimate charge has been put together making the charge unenforceable against myself or the driver.

3. Keeper Liability Requirements and the Protection of Freedom Act

The Operator’s Notice to Keeper ("NTK") did not comply with Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 ("POFA")

In order to be able to be able to invoke Keeper liability, the Operator’s NTK had to comply with the strict requirements of Schedule 4 of POFA; I set out below a non-exhaustive list of reasons why it failed to do so.

• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (a), the NTK did not specify a period of parking to which the notice related; it merely stated a discrete date and time of issue.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (b), the NTK did not inform the keeper that the driver is required to pay parking charges in respect of the specified period of parking and that the parking charges have not been paid in full.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (e), the NTK did not contain a statement that the creditor did not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver, inviting the keeper (i) to pay the unpaid parking charges; or (ii) if the keeper was not the driver of the vehicle, to notify the creditor of the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver and to pass the notice on to the driver.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (f), the NTK did not contain a statement warning the keeper that if, after the period of 28 days beginning with the day after that on which the notice is given, (i) the amount of the unpaid parking charges specified has not been paid in full, and (ii) the creditor does not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver, the creditor will (if all the applicable conditions under Schedule 4 of POFA are met) have the right to recover from the keeper so much of that amount as remains unpaid.
• Contrary to the requirement of Schedule 4, Paragraph 8 (2) (h), the NTK did not identify the creditor and specify how and to whom payment or notification to the creditor may be made.

Consequently, the Operator has forfeited any right to utilise POFA to hold the vehicle's keeper liable for this charge.


4. No Contract was entered into between LPS Ltd and the Driver or Registered keeper

Although I was not the driver I would like to point out that the signs at the car park in question are unsuitable to inform drivers of the full terms and conditions of what they are entering into by physically entering the car park. LPS Ltd clearly relies on contract law, but does not do enough to make clear what the terms and conditions of the contract are, making it far too easy for people to unwittingly fall outside the terms of contract. It is not appropriate for a car park such as this to have such a limited amount of signs and rely on drivers to look carefully for where and how the terms are displayed.
It is surely the responsibility of LPS Ltd to make the terms of their contract far clearer so that drivers have no doubt whatsoever of any supposed contract they may be entering into. I require LPS Ltd to provide evidence as to how clear the terms and conditions are and consider if the methods used are clear enough for this type of car park.

Furthermore a contract can only be considered to be entered into if enough evidence exists that it actually happened. For a contract to have been entered into the driver would have had to get out of the car, read the signs, fully interpret and understand them and then agree to them. None of which ever actually happened.

I request that LPS Ltd provide concrete evidence that a contract existed between themselves and the driver on the day in question, which meets all the legal requirements of forming a contract. They should include specific things including, agreement from both parties, clarity and certainty of terms etc. If they are not met then the contract would be deemed “unfair” under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract Regulations 1999.

5. Unfair terms of contract

Although there is no contract between LPS Ltd and the driver (or myself), if there were then I would ask POPLA to consider this charge to be unfair and non-binding based on the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999. There is a clear list of terms that apply. I have highlighted the following specifically as I believe they apply directly to this case:

2. (1) (e) Terms which have the object or effect of requiring any consumer who fails to fulfill his obligation to pay a disproportionately high sum in compensation.

5. (1) A contractual term which has not been individually negotiated shall be regarded as unfair if, contrary to the requirement of good faith, it causes a significant imbalance in the parties' rights and obligations arising under the contract, to the detriment of the consumer.

5. (2) A term shall always be regarded as not having been individually negotiated where it has been drafted in advance and the consumer has therefore not been able to influence the substance of the term.

The Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 was brought in to protect consumers from unfair contracts such as the one LPS Ltd are suggesting. A company such as LPS Ltd needs to actually prove that the driver saw, read and accepted the terms, which is impossible because this did not actually happen.

6. Without a contract

Without a contract it would seem the most appropriate offence would be a civil trespass. If this were the case, the appropriate award LPS Ltd could seek would be damages. As there was no damage to car park there was no loss to them at all and therefore should be no charge.

7. Non BPA compliant signage

The signage at the car park was not compliant with the BPA standards and therefore there was no valid contract between the parking company and the driver

The Operator needs to show evidence and signage map/photos on this point - specifically showing the height and lighting of the signs and where they are at the entrance, whether a driver still in a car can see and read them when deciding to drive in. Any terms displayed on the ticket machines or on a ticket itself, do not alter the contract which must be shown in full at the entrance. I believe the signs failed to properly and clearly warn/inform the driver of the terms in this car park as they failed to comply with the BPA Code of Practice appendix B. I require the operator to provide photographic evidence that proves otherwise.

As a POPLA assessor has said previously in an adjudication
“Once an Appellant submits that the terms of parking were not displayed clearly enough, the onus is then on the Operator to demonstrate that the signs at the time and location in question were sufficiently clear”.

The parking company needs to prove that the driver actually saw, read and accepted the terms, which means that I and the POPLA adjudicator would be led to believe that a conscious decision was made by the driver to park in exchange for paying the extortionate fixed amount the Operator is now demanding, rather than simply the nominal amount presumably due in a machine on site.

The idea that any driver would accept these terms knowingly is perverse and beyond credibility.

I respectfully request that this parking charge notice appeal be allowed and await your decision.



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sarahlhug82
post Sun, 12 Jul 2015 - 20:06
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can anyone offer any feedback please?
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Albert Ross
post Sun, 12 Jul 2015 - 20:41
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QUOTE
Furthermore as the operator is clearly seeking to impose a penalty...

is that a contractual charge?


--------------------
The owl of Minerva spreads its wings only with the falling of the dusk.
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sarahlhug82
post Wed, 22 Jul 2015 - 20:10
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Hiya

Is it best to appeal to POPLA online or by recorded delivery post? I have had advice to do it via post... Also any feedback on the above would be really appreciated

Many thanks!
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Lynnzer
post Wed, 22 Jul 2015 - 22:06
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QUOTE (sarahlhug82 @ Wed, 22 Jul 2015 - 21:10) *
Hiya

Is it best to appeal to POPLA online or by recorded delivery post? I have had advice to do it via post... Also any feedback on the above would be really appreciated

Many thanks!

Save yourself a stamp. Do it online.
It's good as it is. The first instance of it being a wrongly imposed charge will suffice and there will be no further consideration of any other point. You have this wrapped up. Keep tabs on Beavis at the RCJ tomorrow too. That case may well impact on the whole shenanigans of these cowboys.


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mdavies
post Fri, 2 Oct 2015 - 10:39
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Hi sarahlhug82 - do you have an update. I have recieved similar letters from LPS for the same car park. Let me know. Many Thanks



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Albert Ross
post Sat, 3 Oct 2015 - 20:06
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QUOTE (mdavies @ Fri, 2 Oct 2015 - 11:39) *
Hi sarahlhug82 - do you have an update. I have recieved similar letters from LPS for the same car park. Let me know. Many Thanks

It is most likely that the appeal is amongst a pile of 'Stayed for Beavis'

If you are at the 'formulate a popla appeal stage' Then you need to start a new topic; the process is markedly different now with one chance to submit, it seems.


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The owl of Minerva spreads its wings only with the falling of the dusk.
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