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Is it possible ignore a holiday parking ticket?

Printed From: AussieLegal
Category: General Legal Discussions
Forum Name: Discuss legal issues that are of a general nature
Forum Discription:
Printed Date: 23/February/2019 at 01:12

Topic: Is it possible ignore a holiday parking ticket?
Posted By: Spsbk
Subject: Is it possible ignore a holiday parking ticket?
Date Posted: 04/October/2017 at 15:21
I parked in a private company car park four when I had a rental car in Italy last month and I'm waiting to be sent the final notice to my address. I'm wondering if it's actually possible to just ignore paying the parking ticket altogether? I'm back home now and I've taken most funds out of my debit card to avoid unauthorised payments. Would it be possible that this private company follow it up in Australia with a debt collecting agency and then take me to court? It seems like it would cost more to retrieve it if they went that route and I don't know if it's possible to apply European jurisdiction here in such a matter, but maybe anything is possible.

Posted By: citizen-joe
Date Posted: 04/October/2017 at 22:03
The usual procedure for commercial parking stations where money is owing is that the rental car company will be billed and they will attempt to recover the costs from the card used by the hirer when hiring the car. I expect you may her from the card company if there are insufficient funds in the account.

However they may just hold the debt and the next time you pay any money into that card, the amount owing will be recovered first. If you hear nothing then I expect that the amount owing has just been written off.

Posted By: Spsbk
Date Posted: 05/October/2017 at 00:32
In the event that the rental company doesn't automatically pay the penalty charge and the burden moves to the commercial parking company, which then subsequently sends me a final notice of payment in the mail, would I be under any obligation to pay the fine under Australian law? Could there be any likely repercussions? For example, would there be any likelihood they may chase up the fine within Australia?

Posted By: Eddy
Date Posted: 05/October/2017 at 14:03
As the registered owner of the car, the rental company will have to pay the parking company. The rental company will (may) then seek the costs from you. I presume that they already have your credit card details - they "hang on" to these details for a period of time to cover any parking or speeding fines that may come in after the car is returned.

Not sure if they can affect your credit rating but doubt they'll spend too much trying to recover the costs if they are fairly minimal.

Posted By: Eddy
Date Posted: 05/October/2017 at 17:43
Forgot to mention - about 10 years ago I was on holiday in the USA and had a minor   fender bender with a parked car in a car park (I was tired and sitting on the wrong side of the car to judge distance on the other side if you know what I mean). I did the right thing and left a note on the other car and reported the incident properly when I returned my rental car later that day. I never heard anything more from it and was never charged an excess by the insurance.

Posted By: Spsbk
Date Posted: 30/October/2017 at 18:51
It appears the car rental company has decided not to pay it and that the private car park has instead resorted to getting the money via an debt collector (in their country, not Australia, though they, perhaps as an empty threat, have threatened to get their 'partners here involved'). The problem is that the correspondence is not in my name but in my girlfriend's name who doesn't even live in this country and the letter that has come seems to have taken a long time to get here as the due date for paying it was well before the letter came here (so I presume they will add a penalty).

Am I still obligated to pay this under Australian law? Is it the case that overseas debt collectors can enforce private car park debts here? Would it be easy to argue that the letter never arrived? As I haven't opened the letter, if I write 'return to sender - unknown at this address' and send the letter back to get them off my back (and because technically my girlfriend doesn't live here), would that be some kind of acknowledgment of the debt or would it be better to do nothing at all if I refuse to pay it and wait for their next move?

Posted By: citizen-joe
Date Posted: 30/October/2017 at 19:47
Are we talking about much money here?

They have buckleys chance of recovering in Australia without a court order.

Up to you what you do, sending it back marked not at this address is not an acknowledgment of the debt.

Posted By: Spsbk
Date Posted: 30/October/2017 at 23:22
It's less than $200, but I suspect it will rise infinitely if I ignore it. I can't imagine it would be very cost-effective for them to chase it up, but maybe it will be if the fee rises exponentially. I don't know how debt collectors operate. Could a debt collector knock on the door without a court order and harass/ask questions? (Even if it is not my name on the correspondence).

I am curious why the car hire company wouldn't bill me for it. It makes me wonder how legitimate the bill is. I also don't like how the fine due date is a week ago and yet I only received the mail today.

As the mail is not in my name, I think I will send it back. Could there be legal problems in the future if I send the mail back?

I am worried that it will confirm that the mail has been acknowledged and thus I wouldn't be able to claim ignorance in the future. Though it's what I would normally do when I receive mail that is not in my name.

Posted By: emca01
Date Posted: 10/November/2017 at 13:23
Pay the fine and sleep better. If you can afford to travel to Europe and hire a car? I reckon theyou could pass it to an international debt collector and it will impact on your credit rating....
Possibly not but not worth the worry

Posted By: Eddy
Date Posted: 10/November/2017 at 14:25
That's good advice. After all, you've "done the crime", not worth potential further issues by not paying it.

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