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PCN from Smart Parking Limited

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking
20 replies 1.1K views
JackBauer35JackBauer35 Forumite
11 posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking
Hello everyone!
Let me first say thank you to anyone that will eventually reply and help me and sorry for my english as it is not my first language.



I have read the sticky topics looking for help/clues on what to do but I'm not sure whether my case is worth "contesting" or not and I would like to know your opinion on this as you're certainly more experienced.


Nearly a month ago I went to Snowdonia for a week-end with a hire car. On the 29th of March we parked the car at the Llanberis Car Park and used the paying machine at the entrance to pay for the parking. There was probably something wrong with the machine as using my debit card to pay it took nearly 3-4 minutes to get the "transaction" accepted/processed and at the end it printed the little ticket that I've then put under the car's windscreen. I didn't look at it, not in the morning and not at the end of the day when I left, so I don't know what was written on it.
After a couple of weeks I've received a letter from the Hire Company saying that Smart Parking asked for the details of the hirer because of a PCN and they were ltting me know that they gave them the details and then charged me £30 for it (on a side note, is this something they can do? It seems a lot for just handing over a name..).
A few days ago I found in my mailbox the letter from Smart Parking where I can see two photos of the hire car: one for entering the site and one exiting the site. They are now asking for £100 to be paid by 28 days or £60 if I pay by 14 days.


Now, this is the "interesting" part: after founding out about this fine, I've checked my bank account statement and I can't see anywhere a transaction showing that I paid for that parking on that day.
So what I don't understand is, if the transaction didn't go through then why a ticket was printed/issued by the machine? Is it possible that they print a ticket with something like "transaction failed" written on it?
Based on this and the lenght that it took to process the "payment" there could be a chance that the machine wasn't working properly (but still I don't understand why issuing a ticket) but as you can figure out by reading this I literally have no proof of anything (no ticket, no bank transaction,..).


Do you think there are basis to fight this PCN? I should've been more careful at the time and check everything and especially keep the ticket and not tosssing it.. so I'm happy to pay this if there are no grounds for appeal, but since it's a strage situation I just wanted to check with you and see what you think first.


Thank you for reading this and any thoughts/advice is much appreciated!


Thanks!
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Replies

  • Apologies but it seems I've posted this thread on the general section of the forum and not on the correct sub-forum.
    Can a Moderator move this? Thanks and sorry!
  • QuentinQuentin Forumite
    40.4K posts
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    PM a board guide with your request (there are no moderators on this forum)
  • edited 28 April 2019 at 12:20AM
    Coupon-madCoupon-mad Forumite
    84.9K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
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    edited 28 April 2019 at 12:20AM
    Yes you can fight & win this PCN, maybe with ONE appeal! Smart are easy to beat and so are hirer/lessee cases easy, so you have two things in your favour.
    I've received a letter from the Hire Company saying that Smart Parking asked for the details of the hirer because of a PCN and they were letting me know that they gave them the details and then charged me £30 for it (on a side note, is this something they can do? It seems a lot for just handing over a name..).
    And you might be able to reclaim that £30 when you can show the lease firm that Smart have cancelled.

    Submit online to Smart, the lessee/hirer appeal by 'Edna Basher' - you will find it in a link near the bottom of the first post of the NEWBIES thread (NOT the one from ABC Fleet manager).

    There are 3 example links near the bottom in the 'lease/hire/company car' section of the NEWBIES thread and you need to use the one that is not from a Fleet Manager and just talks about the POFA para 13/14.

    DO NOT imply who was driving in the appeal. No ticking 'driver' as an option!

    You are the LESSEE/HIRER.

    And that is why you will win!

    :)
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
    CLICK at the top of this/any page where it says:
    Forum Home»Motoring»Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
  • Thanks Coupon-mad for your help!
    After double-checking the section in the Newbie thread you've suggested I believe the correct link I should use is the second/middle one. I'll give it a go ASAP.


    In regards to the possibility of claiming back the £30 admin fee charged by the hire company, what do yu mean exactly? Is there a thread/template that shows how to handle this part? Let's say Smart cancels the PCN, my next move should be just emailing the hire company with that "proof" and ask or the admin fee to be credited back?


    Thanks!!
  • The_DeepThe_Deep Forumite
    16.8K posts
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    Read what Pete Wuishert, MP said in the House of Commons recently about Smart parking,

    "I am sick and tired of receiving emails from people complaining about the behaviour of parking companies, telling me that they will never again visit Perth city centre because of the negative experience they had when they had the misfortune to end up in a car park operated by one of these companies. I have received more complaints about one car park in the city of Perth than about any other issue. That car park is operated by the lone ranger of the parking cowboys: the hated and appalling Smart Parking—I see that many other Members are unfortunate enough to have Smart Parking operating in their constituencies. It has reached the stage where one member of my staff now spends a good part of each day just helping my constituents and visitors to my constituency to navigate the appeals process.

    The BPA does not have the ability to regulate these companies and has shown no sign whatsoever that it is trying to get on top of some of the sharper practices. The BPA gives a veneer of legitimacy to some of the more outlandish rogue operators by including them in their membership, allowing them to continue to operate. The Bill will oblige operators such as Smart Parking to amend their practices."

    And complain to your own MP. They are well aware of the tricks these scammers get up to and on 15th March 2019 a Bill was enacted to curb the excesses of these private parking companies. Codes of Practice are being drawn up, an independent appeals service will be set up, and access to the DVLA's date base more rigorously policed, and persistent offenders denied access. Hopefully life will become impossible for the worst of these scammers.

    Until this is done you should still complain to your MP, citing the new legislation.

    http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2019/8/contents/enacted

    Just as the clampers were finally closed down, so hopefully will many of these Private Parking Companies.
    You never know how far you can go until you go too far.
  • MistyZMistyZ Forumite
    1.6K posts
    1,000 Posts Third Anniversary Name Dropper
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    In regards to the possibility of claiming back the £30 admin fee charged by the hire company, what do yu mean exactly? Is there a thread/template that shows how to handle this part? Let's say Smart cancels the PCN, my next move should be just emailing the hire company with that "proof" and ask or the admin fee to be credited back?

    Others may recommend some particularly good phrases to use, but I think that yes, that is basically what you do. 'Ask' quite assertively.
  • The_DeepThe_Deep Forumite
    16.8K posts
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    Smart are unlikely to cancel the PCN , but the hire company should not have charged you a penny for dealing with it. It is neither a fine nor a penalty.

    It is an invoice for the damage they allege they suffered when, allegedly, you acted in a manner which breached an alleged contract, we call it a scam.
    You never know how far you can go until you go too far.
  • edited 28 April 2019 at 10:59AM
    JackBauer35JackBauer35 Forumite
    11 posts
    edited 28 April 2019 at 10:59AM
    Thanks for the help everyone.


    In regards to asking for the administration fee to be charged back, is it really worth waiting to see if Smart cancels the PCN? As I understand this, the hire company shouldn't have charged for an admin fee because what they've received was neither a fine or a charge, so in theory the decision to give the money back shouldn't be based on whether the PCN gets cancelled or not - does this make sense?




    EDIT: this is what the T&Cs of the hire company say:


    You are responsible for all charges and fines issued as a result of you or your additional driver using the vehicle.
    Fines and charges could include:


    - All parking fines and charges
    - Toll charges
    - Towing charges
    - Clamping costs
    - Traffic fines or charges
    - Speeding fines
    - And any other fines or charges
  • The_DeepThe_Deep Forumite
    16.8K posts
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    In regards to asking for the administration fee to be charged back, is it really worth waiting to see if Smart cancels the PCN?

    That chance is very very very remote indeed. You may struggle to get a refund from the hire company, but the threat of an LBC or court claim is likely to make them think again. You may need to play hard ball, the law is on your side here.
    .
    You never know how far you can go until you go too far.
  • Apologies - what does LBC mean?


    This would not be the first time I'm asking the hire company for my money back. Within the same rental contract, they've already charged me for an extra day of rent without any reason (I've brought the car back on the correct day but out of hours, something that they tell you can be done by leaving the car in front of the office and putting the key into an internal safe using an external "system", and they were saying that I've actually brought the car back the day after which was a Sunday...) and I've already got my money back after calling their call centre and demanding for that to be cancelled. So this would be the second time they are taking my money without any real legal ground in the space of 3 weeks. I can play hardball if I need to :)
    I only need to cover my basis on a specific subject and thanks to you all, I should have everything covered on this occasion.
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