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Good morning all,

Hoping for some guidance on a hypothetical question

Someone i know hired a car through work, for work purpose

The car was booked through an agency called Zenith Rental. They then book a car with a car rental company such as Enterprise, Avis etc.

Yesterday an invoice for a PCN at Macdonalds in Gatwick. The invoice is £50 for parking offence and £37.50 for parking offence admin.

The fine was issued sometime in April but i imagine due to the processes of getting the fine to the rental car company, then zenith and then zenith getting it to company finance team which is in a different country, this is why its just reached us!

So my question is, who would hypothetical person need to appeal too? Zenith, Car Rental Company or Met Parking Services?

Is there a template hypothetical person can use for this scenario?

Appreciate anyone's time and help on this

First is edit your post so that the identity of the driver cannot be inferred.

So who is that invoice from? It looks as though the agent has paid the parking charge and if this is so then no appeal is possible.

This is not a parking offence, private companies cannot issue penalties etc. Get out your contract and have a look at the conditions for charging and paying a PCN. If it talks about offences, penalties etc then the PCN was non of those and they have breached their own conditions.

Secondly to transfer liability from the driver to the hirer they have to comply with the requirements of POFA. 14 2 a states that a copy of the rental agreement and original PCN must be include with the PCN to the hirer. They very rarely are and there can be no hirer liability.

So it looks as though your contractor has paid an invoice when there was no liability to pay and also removed the chance of an appeal. Your company should have been named as the hirer.

The hard line is that invoice is without substance and they are claiming for something that did not need to be paid so they can suffer the loss

Here's POFA : you are interested in paragraph 14.

P.S. most appeals at this location are successful
Thanks for your reply

Iv edited first post

Yes the invoice is from the agency which booked the car.

Yes it looks as if they have paid the finance and then issued an invoice but i guess i need clarification around that.

Iv not received a copy of the actual parking fine from Zenith or the car rental company.

What should my letter / email be to Zenith?

At the moment the rental company are innocent

Your letter will be to Zenith on the basis that there was no liability for them if they had followed the instructions on the PCN and the law in POFA. As there was no liability then your company will not be paying for an amount that was not due.

Who is making the admin charge?

It's NOT a fine, it's a civil claim for an alleged breach of contract. As the parking company will not have complied with POFA then there can be no hirer liability. When Zenith received the PCN they should have written to the parking company providing the hirer details, your company. As they appear to be involved with car hire they should be conversant with the requirements of POFA, especially paragraphs 13 and 14. Indeed Zenith could probably have got rid of it themselves with a failure of (14) (2) (a)
So my reply is looking something like the below:


To whom it may concern,

Please find attached an Invoice from yourselves to "Company Name" regarding a parking offence that was allegedly commited by me, "Hirers Name".

In accordance with the in POFA there was no liability for Zenith to pay an alleged breach of contract between myself, "Hirers Name" and MET Parking Services.

From what I can see, MET Parking Services have not complied with POFA and therefore there can be no hirer liability. Moreover, when Zenith received the PCN they should have written to MET Parking Services and provided them with the hirer details.

Since Zenith are involved with car hire as a business, I would have expected for Zenith to have been conversant with the requirements of POFA especially with paragraphs 13 and 14 and as a result could have negated the PCN due to failure of (14) (2) (a).

With respect of the above, the invoice will therefore not be settled by ("Hirers Name").

Best Regards

"Hirers Name"

It is not an offence it is a speculative invoice for an alleged breach of conditions by the unknown driver.

The sequence of events are that Smart write to the registered keeper of the car, the hire company. The hire company name the hirer, Zenith, (they cannot know the driver, they were not there) and should send the documents but don't. Smart then send a PCN to Zenith. Zenith should then have identified the hirer known to them, your company or you if it was in your name and then Smart would contact that named hirer. Zenith should not be taking it on themselves to pay an invoice and preventing the hirer from appealing the alleged breach, they should follow the procedures to remove liabilities from themselves.

Several seperate entities in play here:
Registered keeper the name on the V5
Keeper the person with day to day control of the car
Hirer the person who hired the car
Driver the person doing the driving.

If they know the driver then all is lost
Ok that makes sense.

So is there some form of template i can use to send to Zenith? Or should i just contact them first of all asking if they have paid the fine already and if so they shouldnt have because it should have been sent to me to allow me to appeal?

The Rookie
Before you write to Zenith, what does your agreement with them ACTUALLY say? Lets see that first, whether they could transfer liability to you or not is secondary to what the agreement says they will do and which you signed up to. If it's in your favour you can state why they have got it wrong as well.
This is in the reservation confirmation which was email to me at the time of booking:


Parking Charges/Road Traffic Fines/Tolls/Congestion Charges

Parking charges/road traffic fines and any other fines, charges or taxes incurred during the hire period will be the Hirer’s responsibility. Failure to pay parking/toll or other road traffic related costs may result in a fine being charged to your company, together with any appropriate administration fees.
Two failures of their conditions
1) "will be Hirer's responsibility " So why did the pay them instead of leaving for the hirer
2) "may result in a fine being charged ......" this was not a fine, merely an invoice.

Is the additional charge mentioned anywhere?

Basically they have charged when their own t&cs do not justify the charge.
Only at the end of that last statement which says "together with any appropriate administration fees".

So, any chance of some guidance on what my letter should say? I assume this being in their small print is beneficial on my behalf?

Something along the lines of

In line with your t's&c's "Parking charges/road traffic fines and any other fines, charges or taxes incurred during the hire period will be the hirer's responsibility" and thus on this occasion, all correspondance about the breach of contract should have been passed direct to the hirer and not paid by yourselves negating the opportunity for the hirer to appeal where appropriate.

You could argue that this is not a penalty, charge or fine, simply an invoice and therefore they have not met their own requirements to charge for administration.
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