The company that enforces parking restrictions in many car parks across the country for companies such as McDonalds, Halfords, David Lloyd, Virgin Atlantic, Aviva, Tesco and the NHS has started a new side venture which allows their app user to earn a £10 commission for each paid parking ticket they’ve taken a photo of.
When we read the various headlines in the news today none of them seemed to mention that this isn’t open to the public, you have to be the freeholder or an agent on behalf of the freeholder to use the app.
CPM was founded in September 2010 by managing director James Randall, aged 32, and sales director Lukhbir ‘Lucky’ Gohler, aged 31.
Director of CPM James Randall told the Mirror:
“Any old joe public can’t use this app. You have to be the freeholder or an agent on behalf of the freeholder.
“The photo uploaded to the app is just the evidence.
“Alright, this is offering a little incentive, but if someone is parking in front of a sign that says ‘don’t park here’ then they deserve to get a parking ticket.
“Everyone looks favourably on the motorist but what about the pub or restaurant owner who is getting their land abused?”
“Self ticketing has been around for a while it’s just before people would take a picture on a camera and email it to us.
“This app has revolutionised things.
“Some of our best customers are pub and restaurant owners who can’t access their parking spaces because people just leave their cars there.
“There was one lady on a residential property who had someone just dump in her space.
“We can get wardens to come out, but they are not at her beck and call. Now you can take action yourself.”
Director of CPM Lukhbir ‘Lucky’ Gohler said:
“Anyone who registers with the app agrees to abide by the independent code of practice.
“But the user of the app is not actually giving the ticket out.
“There is human interaction at every stage and we discard any photos that aren’t correct.
“And if you really shouldn’t park there it doesn’t matter how the ticket was given out.”
Brighton-based CPM states on its website:
“Not only is the service free, you even receive £10 commission for every paid parking ticket!
“With three simple steps CPM will issue a parking ticket to the vehicle owner using DVLA data and the postal service.
“Complete privacy! Not only is the issuing process quick and discrete, CPM also operates under complete confidentiality.
“Our parking tickets and signs have no reference to yourself, all correspondence are designed to make the motorist believe they have been caught by a CPM patrol warden.”
How can this be legal?
Prime Minister Theresa May has been partially blamed for the law change [back in 2012] which unleashed the multi-million-pound industry while serving as Home Secretary,
The Two Directors of CPM said Theresa May’s law change was
“the best thing that ever happened to us.”
Her Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 enabled private parking firms to launch civil cases against a registered keeper via the County Courts in England – even if they could not prove who was driving a vehicle.
It allows, providing certain conditions are met, the landholder to pursue the registered keeper of a vehicle for unpaid parking charges if the registered keeper refuses or is unable to identify the driver at the time the parking charge was incurred. This is often referred to as “keeper liability”. However the registered keeper cannot be liable for any unpaid parking charges if he or she identifies the driver of the vehicle at the time the parking charge was incurred.
The law helped see a large increase in private parking firms requesting information from the DVLA to chase motorists for fines, before then such tickets could be ignored.
The law change was partially a good thing for drivers and it made it illegal for private companies to clamp cars, around four million records of vehicle details were handed to parking companies between 2016 and 2017 by the DVLA which pockets £10 million a year in return for them.
Should I ignore a parking ticket like this?
It depends, often it’s simply an invoice that the company is asking you to pay so could be ignored, however, be sure that is exactly what you’ve got and not something else as (e.g. a Penalty Charge Notice, Excess Charge Notice or Fixed Penalty Notice from the council or Police).
Either way, you could end up in court over the matter!
RAC spokesman Simon Williams said:
“This is wrong on so many levels it beggars belief.
“The sharp practices of parking companies are already regularly called into question with paid officials dishing out fines, but with members of the public being financially encouraged to shop motorists who overstay, it’s a recipe for disaster.
“This will cause total chaos by undermining trust still further and may even lead to public order offences between drivers and members of the public looking to earn a quick £10.”
“This can only be seen as a cost-cutting move from a private parking company trying to reduce its employee overheads by incentivising the public to do the job instead.
“Surely this private parking company’s fees and fines are high enough to merit proper employees.”
Edmund King, president of the AA, said:
“We hoped that outlawing cowboy clampers would have got rid of these sharp practices but it seems that some of the modern day highwaymen are alive and well.
“Even Dick Turpin did his own dirty work without relying on others.
“Getting drivers to do their dirty work shows the lengths that some parking companies will go to in order to get drivers to stand and deliver their profits.”