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  • FIRST POST
    • jimmyb78
    • By jimmyb78 7th Sep 17, 9:39 AM
    • 17Posts
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    jimmyb78
    Apcoa Parking fines and 'admin' on rental car- Paid at machine with 1 wrong digit :(
    • #1
    • 7th Sep 17, 9:39 AM
    Apcoa Parking fines and 'admin' on rental car- Paid at machine with 1 wrong digit :( 7th Sep 17 at 9:39 AM
    Hello,

    I'm confused as to correct procedure here. I've been charged 2 £55 admin fees by easirent for 2 'fines' by Apcoa. They allege I didn't pay when at a hotel at the end of July. I have a debit card receipt for the payment covering the parking period. However I'm sure I entered a wrong digit on the car registration on the machine, putting a 5 instead of an S. I'm now on the hook for 2 £60 fines as I took the car out of the parking lot to fill it up and then returned. They have sent the CCTV stills as their proof.

    Easirent have just charged me 2 lots of £55 as admin on top of this.

    I have no real idea who to go to first. Should I challenge Apcoa and then easirent. Vice versa?
Page 1
    • Half_way
    • By Half_way 7th Sep 17, 10:06 AM
    • 3,772 Posts
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    Half_way
    • #2
    • 7th Sep 17, 10:06 AM
    • #2
    • 7th Sep 17, 10:06 AM
    when dealing with rental companies, its absolutely critical that you understand that there are not fines, and under no circumstances should you refer to private parking tickets add fibres even dealing with the hire company.

    first question, what do the rental/hour terms say about parking tickets/fines etc?

    do not contact the hire company until you post what you intend to say in here first for analysis and checking.
    From the Plain Language Commission:

    "The BPA has surely become one of the most socially dangerous organisations in the UK"
    • Quentin
    • By Quentin 7th Sep 17, 10:16 AM
    • 32,791 Posts
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    Quentin
    • #3
    • 7th Sep 17, 10:16 AM
    • #3
    • 7th Sep 17, 10:16 AM
    Before starting a new thread everyone is politely asked to read the newbies FAQ thread near the top of the forum.

    Go there now to understand the game you are caught up in.

    You need to deal with both issues separately but in tandem.

    Each PCN needs dealing with individually.

    You also should be complaining to the hotel.

    All this is covered in the newbies FAQ
    • Guys Dad
    • By Guys Dad 7th Sep 17, 10:48 AM
    • 10,198 Posts
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    Guys Dad
    • #4
    • 7th Sep 17, 10:48 AM
    • #4
    • 7th Sep 17, 10:48 AM
    Check your rental agreement. Usually they refer to fines and admin charges. This is a speculative invoice from a private company that you dispute.

    If there is no reference in the t&c then they have mischarged you and you get onto your card company and dispute the charge.

    You tell the hire company that this is not a fine, they have no right to charge you and that you will be disputing the PPC charge and have informed your card company to remove their admin fee.

    The rest re th PPC charge is covered as nauseum on here and search the forum for very similar situations. The PPC and the appeal service will probably not roll over, but you have an excellent chance if they do go to court.
    • DoaM
    • By DoaM 7th Sep 17, 11:00 AM
    • 3,195 Posts
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    DoaM
    • #5
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:00 AM
    • #5
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:00 AM
    When contacting the hire company, remind them that they should be following BVRLA guidance whereby they should provide the parking company with the hirer details. That way they discharge any liability and allow the hirer to dispute the charge.

    But of course this doesn't make any extra money for the hire company.
    Diary of a madman
    Walk the line again today
    Entries of confusion
    Dear diary, I'm here to stay
    • jimmyb78
    • By jimmyb78 7th Sep 17, 11:18 AM
    • 17 Posts
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    jimmyb78
    • #6
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:18 AM
    • #6
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:18 AM
    when dealing with rental companies, its absolutely critical that you understand that there are not fines, and under no circumstances should you refer to private parking tickets add fibres even dealing with the hire company.

    first question, what do the rental/hour terms say about parking tickets/fines etc?

    do not contact the hire company until you post what you intend to say in here first for analysis and checking.
    Originally posted by Half_way
    So this is what it says on easirent's t and c's

    'Traffic and parking Fines: If the vehicle receives a fine during the rental period, you will be responsible for full payment of the fine as well as a £55 traffic fine management fee per fine. This includes, but is not restricted to, parking offences, speeding fines, congestion charges, bus lane offences, traffic signal offences, toll road offences, etc…'

    They've charged my card for the 2 55 quid 'invoices' or whatever they're supposed to be and say they're sending me the fines to pay also. The scanned copy of the 'invoice' shows the CCTV footage and refers to the 'alleged contravention of failure to purchase and display a valid parking permit'

    I've called noone and said nothing. I read the newbies thread but my case seems to combine several issues so, wasn't sure where to start. Normally I'd call the parking company and send them my debit card receipt to show I'd paid the day in question but I'm not sure I should do that now...

    As for the rental company I don't know what to say to them either. Perhaps that 'this isn't a fine, just an invoice and you can't charge me'? Or should I leave it until I've got on to the parking company themselves?
    Last edited by jimmyb78; 07-09-2017 at 11:25 AM.
    • Edna Basher
    • By Edna Basher 7th Sep 17, 11:30 AM
    • 583 Posts
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    Edna Basher
    • #7
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:30 AM
    • #7
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:30 AM
    Firstly, do not call the parking company - you must communicate with them only in writing.

    Has APCOA reissued the Parking Charge Notices to you (i.e. as "Notices to Hirer")?

    Check out the Newbies Sticky thread and you will see that you should deal with these charges as the vehicles hirer / keeper. Here's the process:

    1. Submit an "appeal" to APCOA for each PCN - based on details in the Newbies Sticky
    2. When APCOA send their standard rejection letter (plus POPLA Code), escalate your "appeal" to POPLA - based on details in the Newbies Sticky.
    3. A couple of weeks later you will receive an email from POPLA telling you that APCOA do not wish to contest your "appeal" and have cancelled the charge.

    APCOA are easy to beat - so long as you do not reveal who was driving.

    With regard to the Easirent terms and conditions that you've quoted, these refer only to traffic and parking fines, not civil parking charges issued by private parking companies. The £55 admin charges are unfair and are totally disproportionate to the actual cost to Easirent of passing your details on to APCOA.
    Last edited by Edna Basher; 07-09-2017 at 11:37 AM.
    • Guys Dad
    • By Guys Dad 7th Sep 17, 11:31 AM
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    Guys Dad
    • #8
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:31 AM
    • #8
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:31 AM
    These are not fines or parking offences. Refer them to the BPA Code of Practice that reads that Parking Companies...........

    14 Misrepresentation of authority
    14.1 You must give clear information to the public about what
    parking activities are allowed and what is unauthorised.
    You must not misrepresent to the public that your
    parking control and enforcement work is carried out
    under the statutory powers of the police or any other
    public authority. You will be breaching the Code if you
    suggest to the public that you are providing parking
    enforcement under statutory authority.
    14.2 You must not use terms which imply that parking is
    being managed, controlled and enforced under statutory
    authority. This includes using terms such as ‘fine’, ‘penalty’
    or ‘penalty charge notice’.


    If their own trade association confirms that there charges are NOT fines, then no hire company can either!!

    And Collins Dictionary defines a parking offence as "the act of leaving your car somewhere illegally "
    https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/parking-offence

    What you did was not illegal and therefore not an offence.

    Tell them that if the admin charge is not removed, you will take them to the small claims court.
    • StaffsSW
    • By StaffsSW 7th Sep 17, 11:43 AM
    • 5,361 Posts
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    StaffsSW
    • #9
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:43 AM
    • #9
    • 7th Sep 17, 11:43 AM
    When contacting the hire company, remind them that they should be following BVRLA guidance whereby they should provide the parking company with the hirer details. That way they discharge any liability and allow the hirer to dispute the charge.

    But of course this doesn't make any extra money for the hire company.
    Originally posted by DoaM
    As a hire industry insider, we will attempt to transfer liability on all "fines" (the process is the same regardless of whether it is C Charge, Dart, speeding, private parking or local authorities charges) however the private parking industry will often refuse this transfer request, and thus create a load of issues for the fleet operator.

    I can't deny that £55 admin charge is steep, my company charges £15+vat, but we do employ 2 people full time to process all fines, and the postage charges for replies alone come to a 5 figure sum annually. We also absorb a lot of charges where we are unable to pass on the full charge for various reasons.
    Most of the companies base their admin fee on the actual cost of processing the "fines" rather than a revenue stream. I do know Easirent, and the chances are that the OP was even in one of my vehicles. Depending on the supply chain, it could well be that the Registered keeper is the vehicle manufacturer, who processed the original charge, it then come to us, we pass it to Easirent, who then pass it to the driver, and each step incurs an admin fee, as it is passed down the line.

    Our policy is that all fines, tolls, traffic violation and parking charges are the liability of the hirer, and this is in line with the BVRLA approved wording that complies with the RTA definition of a hire agreement. It is also our policy to refund any admin fees for charges that are subsequently cancelled, whether that is a S172 NIP, or a private parking charge. We still have the cost of processing the initial paperwork, but we offer it as a customer goodwill gesture.

    There is also the small matter of litigation that we take at our own cost. I deal with a number of court claims each month, although it's becoming rare they get as far as a hearing, but again that is a tangible cost to our business, whether we transfer liability or not.

    If the charge has been transferred to the hirer, I can bet precious parts of my anatomy that APCOA will not have complied with paragraph 13 of POFA 2012 which covers hire vehicles. It will still be up to the OP to go through the appeal process though once liability has been transferred. If the charge is cancelled at POPLA, then it's the time to go back to the hire company and challenge the admin fees.

    Again, from lots of previous experience, your initial call should be to the hotel to complain. They hold most sway in getting the tickets cancelled, and is generally a lot easier than jumping through the POPLA hoops.
    <--- Nothing to see here - move along --->
    • jimmyb78
    • By jimmyb78 7th Sep 17, 11:46 AM
    • 17 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    jimmyb78
    Firstly, do not call the parking company - you must communicate with them only in writing.

    Has APCOA reissued the Parking Charge Notices to you (i.e. as "Notices to Hirer")?

    Check out the Newbies Sticky thread and you will see that you should deal with these charges as the vehicles hirer / keeper. Here's the process:

    1. Submit an "appeal" to APCOA for each PCN - based on details in the Newbies Sticky
    2. When APCOA send their standard rejection letter (plus POPLA Code), escalate your "appeal" to POPLA - based on details in the Newbies Sticky.
    3. A couple of weeks later you will receive an email from POPLA telling you that APCOA do not wish to contest your "appeal" and have cancelled the charge.

    APCOA are easy to beat - so long as you do not reveal who was driving.

    With regard to the Easirent terms and conditions that you've quoted, these refer only to traffic and parking fines, not civil parking charges issued by private parking companies. The £55 admin charges are unfair and are totally disproportionate to the actual cost to Easirent of passing your details on to APCOA.
    Originally posted by Edna Basher
    Thanks for the info re the 'fines'. I'm currently abroad so will check whether they have been sent to my parents' address. As for the 'admin charges', should I call easirent and quote the above do you think? What's the best way to go about it?
    • DoaM
    • By DoaM 7th Sep 17, 11:50 AM
    • 3,195 Posts
    • 3,236 Thanks
    DoaM
    As a hire industry insider, we will attempt to transfer liability on all "fines" (the process is the same regardless of whether it is C Charge, Dart, speeding, private parking or local authorities charges) however the private parking industry will often refuse this transfer request, and thus create a load of issues for the fleet operator.

    I can't deny that £55 admin charge is steep, my company charges £15+vat, but we do employ 2 people full time to process all fines, and the postage charges for replies alone come to a 5 figure sum annually. We also absorb a lot of charges where we are unable to pass on the full charge for various reasons.
    Most of the companies base their admin fee on the actual cost of processing the "fines" rather than a revenue stream. I do know Easirent, and the chances are that the OP was even in one of my vehicles. Depending on the supply chain, it could well be that the Registered keeper is the vehicle manufacturer, who processed the original charge, it then come to us, we pass it to Easirent, who then pass it to the driver, and each step incurs an admin fee, as it is passed down the line.

    Our policy is that all fines, tolls, traffic violation and parking charges are the liability of the hirer, and this is in line with the BVRLA approved wording that complies with the RTA definition of a hire agreement. It is also our policy to refund any admin fees for charges that are subsequently cancelled, whether that is a S172 NIP, or a private parking charge. We still have the cost of processing the initial paperwork, but we offer it as a customer goodwill gesture.

    There is also the small matter of litigation that we take at our own cost. I deal with a number of court claims each month, although it's becoming rare they get as far as a hearing, but again that is a tangible cost to our business, whether we transfer liability or not.

    If the charge has been transferred to the hirer, I can bet precious parts of my anatomy that APCOA will not have complied with paragraph 13 of POFA 2012 which covers hire vehicles. It will still be up to the OP to go through the appeal process though once liability has been transferred. If the charge is cancelled at POPLA, then it's the time to go back to the hire company and challenge the admin fees.

    Again, from lots of previous experience, your initial call should be to the hotel to complain. They hold most sway in getting the tickets cancelled, and is generally a lot easier than jumping through the POPLA hoops.
    Originally posted by StaffsSW
    All very interesting ... and all entirely irrelevant - the T&Cs provide no scope for admin charges to be applied for private parking charges. Therefore the hire company is in breach of contract and has fraudulently applied the charges (IMHO).

    OP has a valid claim to get the charges reversed by the card supplier.
    Diary of a madman
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    Entries of confusion
    Dear diary, I'm here to stay
    • StaffsSW
    • By StaffsSW 7th Sep 17, 12:05 PM
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    StaffsSW
    All very interesting ... and all entirely irrelevant - the T&Cs provide no scope for admin charges to be applied for private parking charges. Therefore the hire company is in breach of contract and has fraudulently applied the charges (IMHO).

    OP has a valid claim to get the charges reversed by the card supplier.
    Originally posted by DoaM
    Fair enough, but I still think a call to the hotel in the first instance is the way to go.

    Getting all pseudo-legally and bolshy at minimum wage administrators usually fails the "customer attitude test", and is likely to result in a very long winded and fraught process to get any resolution.

    Cancel at source with the hotel, then call Easi-rent and ask for a refund as the charges were incorrectly raised in the first place. Job done.
    If they refuse at that point, then it is probably time to be quoting T&Cs back a more senior person in the organisation.

    If I get one of these FOTL wibbleheads giving it the "Big I Am" speech to me (usually a couple each week, as I won't let our admin team go through that unnecessary abuse), or somebody who has used a bit of common sense and speaks to me like a fellow human, I'll let you guess which one is more likely to receive a swift refund on admin fees...
    <--- Nothing to see here - move along --->
    • DoaM
    • By DoaM 7th Sep 17, 12:34 PM
    • 3,195 Posts
    • 3,236 Thanks
    DoaM
    Apologies ... I should have made it clear that contacting the land owner is ALWAYS a good idea.
    Diary of a madman
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    Entries of confusion
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    • Guys Dad
    • By Guys Dad 7th Sep 17, 1:40 PM
    • 10,198 Posts
    • 9,330 Thanks
    Guys Dad
    Fair enough, but I still think a call to the hotel in the first instance is the way to go.

    Getting all pseudo-legally and bolshy at minimum wage administrators usually fails the "customer attitude test", and is likely to result in a very long winded and fraught process to get any resolution.

    Cancel at source with the hotel, then call Easi-rent and ask for a refund as the charges were incorrectly raised in the first place. Job done.
    If they refuse at that point, then it is probably time to be quoting T&Cs back a more senior person in the organisation.

    If I get one of these FOTL wibbleheads giving it the "Big I Am" speech to me (usually a couple each week, as I won't let our admin team go through that unnecessary abuse), or somebody who has used a bit of common sense and speaks to me like a fellow human, I'll let you guess which one is more likely to receive a swift refund on admin fees...
    Originally posted by StaffsSW
    But putting a stop on the Credit Card charge is advisable. We don't know if the hire company - whose admin charge is nearly 4 times your company's - would process a refund if you won.
    • jimmyb78
    • By jimmyb78 7th Sep 17, 3:10 PM
    • 17 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    jimmyb78
    Fair enough, but I still think a call to the hotel in the first instance is the way to go.

    Getting all pseudo-legally and bolshy at minimum wage administrators usually fails the "customer attitude test", and is likely to result in a very long winded and fraught process to get any resolution.

    Cancel at source with the hotel, then call Easi-rent and ask for a refund as the charges were incorrectly raised in the first place. Job done.
    If they refuse at that point, then it is probably time to be quoting T&Cs back a more senior person in the organisation.

    If I get one of these FOTL wibbleheads giving it the "Big I Am" speech to me (usually a couple each week, as I won't let our admin team go through that unnecessary abuse), or somebody who has used a bit of common sense and speaks to me like a fellow human, I'll let you guess which one is more likely to receive a swift refund on admin fees...
    Originally posted by StaffsSW
    So I have rung the hotel who say this sometimes happens even to their staff and they will intervene to have the Apcoa charges cancelled. If they do this then I'll call up easirent and hopefully they'll do the refund... Fingers crossed
    • Quentin
    • By Quentin 7th Sep 17, 3:49 PM
    • 32,791 Posts
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    Quentin
    Do keep to the appeal deadlines for both invoices until you get written confirmation that the charges have all been cancelled from acpoa.
    • StaffsSW
    • By StaffsSW 7th Sep 17, 3:57 PM
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    StaffsSW
    I've no record of any tickets that match your details on my fines system, so it must have been one of their owned vehicles, but I do have a good contact at ER if you need any help later on.
    <--- Nothing to see here - move along --->
    • Computersaysno
    • By Computersaysno 7th Sep 17, 5:19 PM
    • 781 Posts
    • 584 Thanks
    Computersaysno
    I know someone who got charged admin by the hireco for giving their details to a scum company, er I mean ppc.


    Wrote to hireco, issued court papers...ended up £200 better off!!


    Nice!!!
    Welcome to the world of 'Protect the brand at the cost of free speech'
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 7th Sep 17, 5:59 PM
    • 50,049 Posts
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    Coupon-mad
    The OP needs to not deal with Easirent by phone. This needs a paper or email trail and must be robust, pointing out that:

    - the T&Cs do not provide for any admin charge for handling a fake PCN, let alone a hefty £55

    - the charges have both been cancelled immediately as the Hotel admit they were issued in error

    - the PCNs sent to Easirent were NEVER Easirent's liability in law, because APCOA are a firm which cannot hold registered keepers/owners liable, because they do not issue POFA 2012 compliant PCNs documents.

    - so Easirent have charged £110 for two scam tickets that were only ever a matter for the driver alone and were cancelled at source. Forwarding two ordinary letters to a hirer costs about £5 at most, altogether, in admin time & postage, so £55 x 2 is an unfair business practice and wholly unjustifiable.

    Then continue and ask in your email or letter (NO phone calls!):

    - do Easirent not know the difference between real Council fines and private ones?

    - can Easirent not tell the difference between a private charge that uses POFA 2012 wording for 'keeper liability' (potentially their business) and one that doesn't (none of their business)?

    Finish the rant by enclosing the proof that the PCNs were cancelled (email from Hotel, I hope it wasn't just another phone call).

    And demand that the £110 is refunded within seven days, or you will make a formal complaint to the BVRLA about Easirent and will expect to be provided with details of the TSI approved conciliation service (ADR) in the event of exhausting Easirent's complaints procedure.

    State that you know you are entitled to use a competent body to resolve the dispute, as set out in the Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes (Competent Authorities and Information) Regulations 2015.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 07-09-2017 at 6:01 PM.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Computersaysno
    • By Computersaysno 7th Sep 17, 6:10 PM
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    Computersaysno
    ...you will make a formal complaint to the BVRLA .....
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad

    Total and utter waste of time....the BVRLA actually support hirecos charging!!!
    Welcome to the world of 'Protect the brand at the cost of free speech'
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