19 February 2016

Aren't Parking Eye wonderful, again?

Are Parking Eye the fish or the predator?
Mr Mustard is blogging for the second time about the 'kindness' of Parking Eye (part of Capita) but things aren't necessarily what they seem. The problem Mr Mustard was faced with was that out of nowhere PE had written to his client in January 2016 threatening her with various fates including court proceedings for a Parking Charge at Barnet Hospital from the 4th quarter of 2014. It appears that PE are raking through their old cases to see if they can squeeze a few more quid out of them. You can easily imagine how frightened old folks get who don't have the help of Mr Mustard or some other expert (and private tickets aren't really his bag but he feels obliged to help frightened people).

Here is what he wrote to PE.

Dear Sirs

I represent Mrs Blue Badge (why do you address her as "Dear Sir / Madam" when you know which she is?).

She is a lady in her 80s who has reduced mobility and uses a wheeled frame. She also suffers from various ailments (not unusual in an 80+ year old) and has to attend hospital from time to time. She does display her blue badge when she visits Barnet Hospital and got a parking charge notice once (as she didn't realise the system had changed) but asked the hospital to cancel it on her next visit which they did do (presumably by agreement with yourselves). I don't know if that was this charge notice or another one but not many people keep paperwork for completed matters until 2016.

I don't know where you sent earlier letter / notices (and would like copies of them all) but you have written to an address at which my client does not and never has lived. She lived at Barracks Rd for 50 years prior to moving into Old Folks Court. She has the benefit of my free assistance and so does not ignore paperwork about alleged parking contraventions. As it happens she is known at xxx Great North Road and the occupier opened your letter in error but this has still led to embarrassment for my client.

You may, in all the circumstances, wish to consider cancelling the claim.

Yours faithfully

This is what PE wrote in reply.

Dear Mr. Mustard

Thank you for your recent correspondence in regards to this matter.
On this occasion as a gesture of goodwill we will be cancelling this charge.
Kind regards

ParkingEye Enforcement Team

Part of Capita Parking Services

What they didn't do was send Mr Mustard copies of the correspondence which he had asked to see (no surprise there as it might have been embarrassing with the incorrect addresses on it) and there isn't any explanation or apology for the data breach and PE are probably hoping that given the cancellation Mr Mustard won't take the matter any further. Mr Mustard's client isn't one to cause a fuss, or deliberately break parking rules, so this time PE will get away with their doubtful behaviour.

If anything similar happens to you, complain.

In Mr Mustard's experience PE are making a packet out of blue badge holders at hospitals who don't realise they have to register their blue badge and car(s) at reception because this is compeltely different to the guide issued by the government about how to use your blue badge (which only applies to the public highway).

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

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