Friday, 23 May 2014

Consumer pressure forces change to IAS appeals procedure

After 8 months of wrangling, consumer pressure has finally resulted in a change to the Independent Parking Committee's (IPC) appeals procedure.

Originally the appeals procedure required the registered keeper to grass up the identity of the driver. There was no apparent good reason for this, and the danger was that parking companies could make a Norwich Pharmaceutical Order to the IPC, forcing them to disclose driver identities in bulk.

The DVLA therefore took up the fight on behalf of the motorist and after some negotiation, eventually succeeded in agreeing the change.

The IPC has not yet had a chance to update its appeal documentation.

Prankster Analysis

The IPC has proved interesting competition for the BPA Ltd, and its trailblazing attitude has already forced changes to the BPA Ltd code of practice; the BPA Ltd are playing catch-up in many situations. In a recent DVLA consumer forum meeting the IPC gave the opinion that running a business on charges for breach of contract was unsustainable, although the DVLA seem to have conveniently edited that part out of the minutes.

However, the one area The Prankster has strong reservations about is the IPC appeals procedure. The Prankster recognises it is what it is in order to keep costs down, but believes that this has resulted in the process being biased too heavily towards the operator.

Appeals must be made in writing and received by the Appeals Service within 21 days of rejection by the Operator.
If you wish to appeal against a parking charge, please download a copy of the Appeal Form and submit it along with any supporting evidence. Appeals will not be accepted unless they are accompanied by a properly completed appeal form.
You can download a copy of the Appeal form using the link at the top of this page.
When you submit your appeal it is important that you provide ALL of the grounds that you wish to rely upon and ALL of the evidence that supports your case along with your appeal form. Once this is received by the IPC, it will be presented to the Operator who will have the opportunity to respond. The Adjudicator will then consider the case on what is before him and a decision made on the merits. You will not be able to present additional information to the adjudicator after the IPC has received your appeal form.
You will note that the appeal form contains a declaration that the information within it is true to the best of your knowledge and belief. This MUST be signed and dated by the person making the appeal or it will not be accepted.
Appeals will only be accepted from the driver of the vehicle or from the registered keeper in limited circumstances. Third parties cannot appeal on behalf of the keeper or driver.
The Prankster considers it a fundamental injustice and a clear bias to the procedure that the Operator gets to see the motorist's evidence, but the motorist does not get to see, and thereafter make representations about, the Operator's evidence.

As an example, the fact that this does happen in the rival POPLA process has exposed many irregularities.
  • parking companies have sent in maps of the wrong car park
  • parking companies have signed landowner witness statements themselves
  • parking companies have charged motorists for items they have already been paid for in the contract with the landowner
  • parking companies have been caught out submitting different costing documents when previous ones have been rejected
The restriction hat a third party cannot appeal on behalf of the keeper or drive also goes against the fundamentals of justice, where a person can seek out a more qualified person the represent them if they desire. If this happened in all walks of life, the legal profession would become redundant at a stroke.

Here is what the BPA had to say on the matter in their April AOS meeting:
GRyGBT raised the' issue of 'assisted appeals', circumstances where someone who is not the driver or keeper assists someone who is in making an appeal. This was discussed at great length and concluded that people have a right to be represented in such circumstances as occurs in other judicial proceedings
It is also confusing that the BPA appeal deadline is 28 days, while the IPC is 21 days.

The Prankster believes that having two fundamentally different appeals processes for private parking is confusing to the motorist, and urges the DVLA to take action to align the two.

If you would like to make you own views known, email Paul Johnson at

Happy Parking

The Parking Prankster


  1. There is another major problem though that you have not highlighted, the fact is that the motorist is expected to download the appeals form and print it out then send it on. How can that happen if the motorist has no access to the internet, or access to a printer? A large amount of people have no access to such things!

    For this to work for the motorists there must be a form on rejection of an appeal, and there must sufficient information in the rejection explaining how to appeal, where to get help, and explaining that stuff like mitigation will not be considered.

    I have always said that popla is not fit for purpose, it appears that this from the IPC is not either!

    1. Good point Craig, once again, the more vulnerable members of society are the ones most likely to be punished here.

  2. Perhaps the criminal courts should follow the IAS process too.

    It would ensure a lot more convictions when the accused has to submit their full and final defence without sight of the evidence against them, or a right to respond when that is produced!

  3. Should be "Norwich Pharmacal Order" PP.