UKCPS quite often cancel as soon as they see your first appeal if it is well written and covers off the major points. .
UKCPS Contractural agreement or not
UKCPS claim on their signs that there is a “contractual agreement” to pay an agreed sum for parking in a certain manner, such as not parking within the lines. However, you will see on this sign that UKCPS are really claiming breach of contract if you fail to adhere to the terms and conditions. The give-aways are the following statements:
1. The words: “This land is strictly for the parking of motor vehicles that comply with the following conditions indicated below”.
If that’s the case, then any vehicle that doesn’t comply is surely breaching the contract. You cannot enter into a contract to do something that is forbidden.
2. The symbol of the person walking offsite with a line through it.
This is signifying that the contract does not permit you to leave the site. Therefore if you do, it is breach of contract.
3. The words: “if you park a vehicle on this land and are not fully complying with the conditions above ...”.
This is signifying that anyone who is not complying with the conditions is in breach of contract. Again, you cannot enter into a contract to do something that is forbidden.
The significance of this is that appeals on breach of contract are easier to win than appeals against a contractual amount.
For more information on the difference between “breach of contract” and “contractually agreed sum” see this page.
UKCPS Ltd – my story
In 2013, Roger Johnston, was fined by UKCPS Ltd for not displaying his blue badge properly. UKCPS’s letter to Mr Johnston said that if he paid the fine, he would would receive free membership of Disability Motoring UK (DM-UK ) “which UKCPS will pay”. Membership normally costs £20. DM-UK is a registered charity. Mr Johnston said if it was not for the offer of membership to DM-UK – which gives discounts in shops, restaurants and hotels – he would have contested the fine. However, after paying the fine, Mr Johnston never heard or received anything and said he now felt that taht disabled motorists are being misled by UKCPS Limited”. When challenged, UKCPS paid £1,000 DM-UK, but provided a list of around 160 disabled drivers it has fined, meaning around £2,200 may still be outstanding. But Graham Footer, chief executive of DM-UK, said, despite the money being handed over, its relationship with UKCPS would soon end. He added: “In light of these recent occurrences, DM-UK no longer feels it can continue the relationship it had with UKCPS, and so we will go our separate ways. UKCPS have given us no money since October. The list of names is very important to us because people are being told they are getting a membership. But, without UKCPS contacting us, we had no idea who the people were.”
Disabled driver Susan Lee was fined £100 for parking in a blue badge space without displaying a blue badge. Ms Lee says that she parked at Ravenhead retail park to do some shopping, and when she returned to her car, found a UKCPS ticket on her windscreen. She said “My blue badge is always displayed on my dashboard, but I must have caught it as I got out of the car and it must have flipped as I closed the car door.” Ms Lee send a copy of her parking ticket and blue bade to the UKCPS with her appeal. UKCPS replied that the fine would be reduced to £40 if paid with 14 days. Ms Lee now shopws at Warrington Golden Square and says she will never park in a UKCPS managed car park again. A UKCPS spokesperson said “as a gesture of goodwill we have reduced the payment to £40 to cover our costs”.
UKCPS Ltd and court
UKCPS Ltd have no known history of taking anyone to court. A Freedom of Information document obtained in early 2015 shows that UKCPS Ltd did not issue any legal proceedings against any driver or registered keeper from 1st January 2014 to 31st December 2014. So if your appeal to UKCPS and POPLA fails, then you can safely ignore any further demands from the car park company or their debt collectors.
UKCPS are one of many companies that employ the dubious process of employing “spies” to see if they leave the car park. Some car parks managed by UKCPS have terms and conditions which forbid the driver from leaving the shopping area that is serviced by the shops. For example, the UKCPS car park at the Arnison Centre, in Pity Me, Durham City is one such car park. The UKCPS car park serves several retailers including Halfords, KFC, Pets at Home and Asda Living. If a driver is spotted parking and then leaving the area to shop at different shops, they receive a fine on their windscreen, even though they return to their cars within the time limit.