Fines against law for entering wrong data when paying at machines against the law, says Gosport expert

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CAR park management companies are breaking the law if they use cameras to capture motorists’ car registration numbers and penalise them for entering the wrong data in a payment machine, says a consumer expert.

The News’ Richard Thomson says that unless the motorist is clearly warned that they’ve made a mistake before they pay to park, the firm will be in breach of the Consumer Protection From Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

Part 2 of the regulations outlaws misleading practices, and if an operator has prior knowledge that the motorist has been misled into breaching the contract to park they will be committing an offence.

Richard, from Gosport, said: ‘It is not sufficient to warn motorists about entering an incorrect registration number in the ‘small print’ conditions. Motorists must be given a prominent reminder before they pay up.

‘Firms who penalise motorists for making a mistake and demand payment will also fall foul of part 2 regulation 7, which bans aggressive commercial practices, harassment, and coercion. People in receipt of demands for payment should write to the car parking firm insisting they promptly revoke the penalty notice. If the firm persists in demanding payment, they should register a complaint with trading standards’.