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Vehicle Control Services £100 ticket for 19 minutes over 2hrs
Lyndon
post Wed, 3 Jun 2015 - 20:12
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My son has just received a Parking Charge Notice from Vehicle Control Services for his car being parked 19 minutes over the 2 hour limit in the Berkeley Precinct in Sheffield . They have pictures of the car going in and coming out.

The "charge" for this extra 19 mins is £100 reduced down to £60 if paid with 14 days.

Can anybody advise as to the whether this can be fought as £60 for 19mins? If so, how would this be addressed in a appeals to them?

I have seen on a Daily Mirror webarticle from Feb 2015 about private charges and they say to write back with:-

"Then simply respond that you are refusing to pay. DON'T say you are appealing the ticket, as this legitimises the ticket. Also write “Without Prejudice” on the letter – then no information in the letter can be used against you."


Daily Mirror article

£60 seems excessive considering the onroad charges are 50p per minute right next to the car park!

I would appreciate any help.

This post has been edited by Lyndon: Wed, 3 Jun 2015 - 20:44
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post Wed, 3 Jun 2015 - 20:12
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hexaflexagon
post Wed, 3 Jun 2015 - 21:53
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Presumably your son has received the PCN in his capacity as the Registered Keeper?

What exactly does the signage say and show - any chance of a picture?

How does this car park work? i.e. when do you get the ticket, on the way in or out, how is it dispensed and how does the ticketing system record the car reg for tying up to the camera record.

Did your son have to drive around to find a space, or have to spend time queuing to get out. The charge is for parking which in the normal interpretation of that word means being stationary. Time spend looking for a space or getting out is not parking. 19 minutes is pushing this a bit but
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emanresu
post Thu, 4 Jun 2015 - 05:15
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Have you used the Search box - top right. If you put in "Berkeley Precinct" there is a lot of information that will likely answer your questions.
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Lyndon
post Fri, 5 Jun 2015 - 18:24
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QUOTE (hexaflexagon @ Wed, 3 Jun 2015 - 22:53) *
Presumably your son has received the PCN in his capacity as the Registered Keeper?

What exactly does the signage say and show - any chance of a picture?

How does this car park work? i.e. when do you get the ticket, on the way in or out, how is it dispensed and how does the ticketing system record the car reg for tying up to the camera record.

Did your son have to drive around to find a space, or have to spend time queuing to get out. The charge is for parking which in the normal interpretation of that word means being stationary. Time spend looking for a space or getting out is not parking. 19 minutes is pushing this a bit but


Thank you for respone. In reply to your questions:-

Yes he is the registered keeper

It is a free car park, limited to 2hrs. It is ANPR controlled on the way in/out. There are no ticket machines. A PCN is just sent through the post to the RK.

There is signage to say ANPR and 2hrs at the entrance. I can get a picture if required.

It is a very busy car park, especially at the time the car was parked as the bus lane is in operation so everybody is having to try and park in the small car park instead of parking on the road, and having to wait for people to leave in order to park.

I have found an appeals template letter (not sure which site it was from) and in some of the points it mentions to tailor for appeal I have found some technical information which I would like to ask if is valid, because if they are the PCN is technically not vaild

i.e.

(wording in quotes after the relevant Point is from the appeals template)

Point 1

"Your notice refers to a “contravention” which is misleading for implying it to have been issued by a statutory authority. The term "contravention" which is usable only in penalty charge notices issued by local authorities is neither correct nor appropriate terminology for a civil parking notice. "

The PCN quotes " The alleged Contravention was detected and recorded by ANPR......."

(the word contravention is actually in bold like above)

Further down it says "The reaon for contravention is:..."

The heading at the top also says "Contravention Date" and "Contravention Time"

Point 2

"Your notice wrongly requires payment to be made “within” 28 days which is contrary to statutory requirement that provides a period of 28 days from the date of receipt."

All over the PCN it states "...is required within 28 days of the issue date of this Notice" (1st June 2015 - it was received on the 3rd June 2015)

Even the reduced payment says "..is received within 14 days of the issue date of this Notice"


Point 3

"The make of the vehicle must included"

The make of vehicle is not included.

Point 4

"The B.P.A and A.O.S. logos" should be included

There are no logos of the parking organisation to which they belong and nowhere does it state to which organistaion they belong. I have since found out they are members of IAS. They only have their own logo on the invoice.

Only in the paragraph about appeals does it mention the "...option to appeal to IAS"

Are any of these points valid and questionable to get it technically revoked?

One final question - I thought I had read on another site that ANPR issued tickets should have the reduced payment time at 21 days as opposed to 14 days from one stuck on a windscreen. Is that correct, as they state 14 days on the PCN.

I notice they allow 21 days for appeals (again from date of issue not receipt), although only 14 days to guarantee the discounted rate.

Edited:- the 21 days was from here Posted Tickets

see the Posted Tickets section and the link in it also

Thank you.

This post has been edited by Lyndon: Fri, 5 Jun 2015 - 18:31
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Lyndon
post Tue, 10 May 2016 - 20:22
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We have now received a "Letter of Claim" from BWLegal

I have read on another site that we should respond to this pointing out it is not compliant with Practice Direction.

Is this the action we should take?
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nosferatu1001
post Wed, 11 May 2016 - 07:51
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Yes. If it states they WILL take action, you need to respond.

Post your draft here for critique.
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Jlc
post Wed, 11 May 2016 - 08:40
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In reality the lack of adherence to the PD isn't fatal - you could complain to the SRA but it won't necessarily stop them issuing the bloated claim. (Expect something over £200 to appear by the time they've invented mythical charges)

A 19 minute overstay isn't the strongest case but one angle to take is that the ANPR cameras only record entry and exit times. Time is required to enter, find a space, park and read/accept the contract on offer - 10 minutes would not be unreasonable. Upon exit time is required to leave and it is commonly accepted that a 10 minute grace period applies. (Although was introduced in Code of Practices after the material date but nevertheless is worth pointing out)

Therefore, this charge is frivolous and you could argue is vexatious. Although 'Beavis' does seem to apply here - but their signage is usually not a patch on ParkingEye's and could be argued did not meet that test.

It is very likely they will issue a claim so it's time to either decide to dig in and fight or pay up if you don't have the determination/time/grit.

The other stuff like AOS logo's and make of vehicle are extremely unlikely to assist.

Are they claiming 'keeper liability' - or was this ever established/claimed? There may be some angles there but they often pursue the keeper under the 'reasonable assumption' they were driving but this is potentially quite challengeable and they would have to adduce some evidence, on the balance of probabilities, that the keeper was driving.


--------------------
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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Lyndon
post Thu, 12 May 2016 - 19:49
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Here is the "Letter of Claim" Is it a proper one or one aimed to deceive into thinking it is a LBCCC? Should I reply. My draft reply is below for your review.


==========
Here is my draft:-


VCS
Legal Department

[Address]

[Date]

For the personal attention of [ ???] (Supervising Solicitor)

Dear Sirs

VCS v [Name]
Proposed Legal Proceedings


Thank you for your letter of 5th May 2016.

First, the alleged debt is disputed and any court proceedings will be vigorously defended. Any reasonable costs incurred arising from this matter will be claimed on the outcome of a successful verdict of any court proceedings.

Secondly, despite the wholly inaccurate statement that the letter is 'fully compliant with the Practice Direction' it is in fact woefully defective and appears to be a deliberate attempt to mislead the recipient.

Please therefore provide a Letter Before Claim which complies with the requirements of the Practice Direction on Pre-action Conduct: paragraphs 3 and 6.

http://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/pro...action_conduct

I confirm that I shall then seek advice and submit a formal Response within 30 days of receipt, as required by the Practice Direction.

Please ensure that someone does actually read and respond to this letter, providing the specific information relating to the county court claim that your client intends to make against myself as the defendant to the proposed legal proceedings. Please DO NOT send a generic FAQ letter in reply as to do so does not meet the requirements of the Practice Direction and will take this matter no further forward.

Please note, a refusal to comply with the Practice Direction will result in an immediate referral to the Solicitors Regulation Authority for breach of the Principles contained in the SRA Handbook version 16, published on 1st April 2016.

I trust this will not be necessary, and look forward to receiving a fully compliant letter before claim in due course.

Yours faithfully
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Jlc
post Thu, 12 May 2016 - 20:33
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Yes, that's a LBCCC. (Well almost)

Initial legal costs? Sounds like an attempt to extract costs that wouldn't normally be recoverable... I'd complain to the SRA on that alone.


--------------------
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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nosferatu1001
post Fri, 13 May 2016 - 09:30
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INdeed, those intiial legal costs wilL NOT have yet been paid, and would not be recoverable

Did they send letters on 1.3.16?
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Lyndon
post Fri, 13 May 2016 - 14:55
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Sometime in early March we received one envelope with 2 letters inside but the letter is actually dated 3rd March not 1st. One from VCS and the other from BWLegal.

The BWlegal was factually incorrect saying we hadn't raised an appeal. We appealed first to VCS and then their appeal body. Both turned down.

We ignored this letter as per what seems to be the advice.

They are below:-





This post has been edited by Lyndon: Fri, 13 May 2016 - 14:57
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Lyndon
post Sun, 15 May 2016 - 11:03
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I have made a few changes to the draft below. Should I send this in reply to their "Letter of Claim"? Or any other advice greatly appreciated.
================================================================

BWLegal

[Address]

[Date]


Dear Sirs

Vehicle Control Services Ltd v [Name]
Proposed Legal Proceedings


Thank you for your letter of 5th May 2016, received 9th May 2016.

First, the alleged debt is disputed and any court proceedings will be vigorously defended.

Secondly, despite the wholly inaccurate statement that the letter is 'fully compliant with the Practice Direction' it is in fact woefully defective and appears to be a deliberate attempt to mislead the recipient.

Please therefore provide a Letter Before Claim which complies with the requirements of the Practice Direction on Pre-action Conduct: paragraphs 3 and 6.

http://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure...-action_conduct

I confirm that I shall then seek advice and submit a formal Response within 30 days of receipt, as required by the Practice Direction.

Please ensure that someone does actually read and respond to this letter, providing the specific information relating to the county court claim that your client intends to make against myself as the defendant to the proposed legal proceedings. Please DO NOT send a generic FAQ letter in reply as to do so does not meet the requirements of the Practice Direction and will take this matter no further forward.

Please note, a refusal to comply with the Practice Direction will result in an immediate referral to the Solicitors Regulation Authority for breach of the Principles contained in the SRA Handbook version 16, published on 1st April 2016.

I trust this will not be necessary, and look forward to receiving a fully compliant letter before claim in due course.

Yours faithfully
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Lyndon
post Sun, 10 Jan 2021 - 20:11
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Well, I know it is a long time since the last post on this thread but I thought I would update it in case it helps anybody fighting VCS or others. This dates back to May 2015 for a 19 minute overstay of 2hrs free at Berkley Precinct.

BWLegal sent a Letter Before Action in May 2016, we replied but heard nothing else. They kept on telephoning us but we didn't answer once we realised who it was! 53 calls logged in all (from the SAR info we requested), even though my son never gave out our landline as a contact to anybody as he uses a mobile and he also moved out but they still kept phoning our number.

In April 2019 we received another LBA but this time from VCS direct. Replied back, nothing heard for 10 months, a few more letters and long delays getting replies until eventually in July 2020 my son received court papers.

We did a defence and also the Witness Statement, plus a Supplementary and elected for a phone hearing scheduled for last Thursday 7th January.

VCS did not submit their WS by the court date (2nd Nov). We contacted the court on the 5th, they hadn't got it either and on the 6th my son sent an email asking for the case to be struck out (cc'ed to VCS). The VCS Ws did eventually arrive a week late (9th) but interestingly was dated 4th November i.e. 2 days after the court deadline! Court replied saying they would fwd my son's email to VCS asking if they wished to apply for relief from sanctions and it was for the judge to decide on the day (I did raise this issue at the beginning of the hearing)

I had elected to be the Lay Rep for my son. When the judge phoned he had all the info and knew I was to be the LR on the same number and told us that VCS hadn't given the court a number to ring and had not contacted them so they wouldn't be on the call. He then asked us what we wanted to say.

I told him that VCS had never acknowledged in their letters or WS that grace periods are allowed and it was not a 19 minute overstay. He said he was aware of a 10 minute grace period which would mean it was 9 minutes over. I then explained and referred him to the WS where the ICS CoP states there is an exit grace period and an entry grace period to allow for parking and reading the T&Cs, which in the CoP applicable in May 2015 said "sufficient time allowed" for both. (A later CoP changed it to 10 minutes for exit)

I then refered him to the exhibit of a photo of the entrace sign at the time which clearly states that “Any vehicle/driver remaining in this car park 10 minutes after entry is subject to and agrees in full to the Terms and Conditions”, and this was the grace period to which the CoP referred on entry.

At this point he said even he could work out that 10+10=20 which is more than the 19 minutes - case dismissed!

I then raised the matter of costs which he said he could not award as unreasonable conduct is a very high bar, which I expected, and then said my son had had to take time off work and he asked what I was asking for, so I said £95, which I believe is the normal attendance allowance. He said he could allow that!

So 5 yars and 8 months on, finally sorted and a result and VCS have to pay £95.

By the way, if the VCS rep had turned up and argued that the entry 10 minutes was included in the 2 hours I was goign to quote "contra proferentem".

I also had Abuse of process, signage and a landowner contracts to go at in our WS. Regarding the latter, on submitting a SAR to VCS we got a document back "ANPR Appeals Review Form (IPC)" signed by an employee of VCS dated 13th June 2015 on which states "We don't have contract to issue PCNs". I was looking forward to that particualr point as there was nothing in their WS to disprove this.
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The Rookie
post Mon, 11 Jan 2021 - 09:33
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Well done.....


--------------------
There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

S172's
Rookies 1-0 Kent

Council PCN's
Rookies 1-0 Warwick
Rookies 1-0 Birmingham

PPC PCN's
Rookies 10-0 PPC's
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Dave65
post Mon, 11 Jan 2021 - 10:42
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53 CALLS! their telephone must be hot. From my issue they were all automated and I was ex directory but they must have traced it.
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