The Prankster has been made aware of a twitter thread from foodwithaface
A parking space was booked online with a company called Liverpool Airport Limited. The car was duly parked at the airport.
On returning from the trip, Foodwithaface found that the vehicle has a windscreen ticket, issued by a different company called Vehicle Control Services. The ticket claimed the vehicle has contravened some new terms and conditions which were not present on the web site.
She therefore appealed to VCS, who as usual dismissed the appeal. The dismissal appeared to have little in common with the actual appeal.
Foodwithaface therefore started a Facebook and Twitter campaign highlighting the problem. After a short time Liverpool Airport relented and cancelled the parking charge.
If you have booked online at Liverpool Airport and been issued with a parking charge, then you may have grounds to either get it cancelled; or, if you have paid, get the money refunded.
There are two issues in play here. Firstly, if you have entered into a contract to park with Liverpool Airport Limited, then Vehicle Control Services are not a party to that contract and therefore have no rights to charge to for breach of contract.
Liverpool Airport could of course get VCS to enforce the contract on their behalf - but that is clearly not what is happening - the (not a) parking charge notice claims that VCS are the creditor, and not Liverpool Airport.
The second point is that once you have entered into a contract with somebody, the other party cannot unilaterally alter it. They cannot, for instance, introduce additional terms and conditions which were not originally present.
The terms and conditions do not mention that there is a parking charge for contravening the contract. The ParkingEye v Beavis case in the supreme court shows that it is crucial for the existence and level of any charge to be prominently brought to the attention of the motorist at the time the contract is in force. If it is not, then it is likely to be an unfair term breaching the Consumer Rights Act 2015.
On another level, it is extremely worrying that the DVLA is giving out keeper data to a company who appear to have no rights to request this. The DVLA give this data out without putting any robust processes in place to check that the request is valid and that the company has the right to this data.
This is a clear dereliction of duty by the DVLA and may also be a breach of data protection legislation.
Liverpool Airport changed their terms and conditions on about 7th December. The new text is as follows.
5.2 Customers should park vehicles only within designated bays, within authorized areas and so as not to cause obstruction, failure to park within a designated bay may result in a Parking Charge Notice.
However, this does not properly provide the information about parking charges required by Beavis, such as the charge level and the full set of reasons for charges. It also does not address the fact that VCS are still not party to any contract, and so have no rights to any charges.
The Parking Prankster