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Providing number plate for paid parking – is it compulsory?

By Mattenagger - 6 August 2015 36

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Just wondering if you can legally be fined for inputting an incorrect number plate when paying for parking.

The Wilson long-stay carpark behind the Civic police station makes you enter your number plate when you purchase a ticket. I presume this is to stop people handing their ticket to someone else when they happen to leave before their time is up.

I’ve not been fined nor do I know anyone who has for not putting the correct licence plate details in. They do show up on the ticket though for displaying on your dashboard.

Is it legal to fine someone in this way?

What’s Your opinion?


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36 Responses to
Providing number plate for paid parking – is it compulsory?
HenryBG 12:27 pm 08 Aug 15

Dame Canberra said :

I assume it’s legal because they own the car park, which means they can do whatever they want?

What should be illegal is only having two pay parking machines for the entire car park, and it taking several minutes for each driver to get a ticket. Every time I park there the process makes my blood boil.

1. I agree. If you choose to use their carpark, don’t moan about getting fined.

2. Two? Isn’t one of them broken at the moment? I’ve seen queues 15-deep behind that machine. And as each ticket takes about 2 minutes to print out, that’s a 30 minute wait during busy time.

HenryBG 12:25 pm 08 Aug 15

JC said :

And if you read the linked article above the Government is actually doing something to ‘help’ protect people ‘fined’ in these private carparks by not giving them the name and address of those who the company wants to pursue and has suggested they should be using boom gates and the like to better protect their carparks.

I once worked for an organisation that decided to get rid of the vouchers and parking inspectors and replace them with boom gates.

Their parking fee income tripled.

It’s no surprise that the over-paid and intellectually underendowed idiots running Canberra have chosen to deliberately make it hard for Wilson to run their business, but the unanticipated end result will be that Wilson will greatly increase their income, at the expense of Canberra parkers.

cranky 5:57 pm 07 Aug 15

Wilsons also ‘operate’ a private car park in Burbury Close, behind the Hotel Realm. This is part of Burbury Close, delineated from the actual road by a white line. They have installed ‘doctored’ free (green) parking signs by adding the word ‘ticket’ under the usual 2 hour limit.

I had the misfortune to be pinged. As usual, in a hurry, spotted a vacant spot, green 2 hour parking sign, so pulled in. As I crossed the road, saw a motorist taking some interest in my movements. Got a ticket, which was signed off 4 minutes after I had parked.(time on the dash cam/ ticket time)

Obviously more important to issue a ‘fine’ than point out the requirement to get a ticket.
I disputed the ticket, pointing out that if it was a pay parking area, the signs should have been the standard blue background colour.

Got a reply that I had to pay the ‘fine”. This Government action to deny them rego details makes me very happy. Avaricious is a word that springs to mind.

JC 11:52 am 07 Aug 15

dungfungus said :

Dame Canberra said :

An interesting development: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-06/canberra-drivers-information-protected-under-new-parking-law/6677590

It’s hard to work out what actually is happening.
Earlier this year I received a parking infringement from Wilson regarding an alleged parking offence in the Parliamentary Triangle area (where there previously no paid parking).
The signs there did not clearly indicate it was now a paid parking area so I phoned ACT Parking Operations to seek advice and I was bluntly told the area I parked in was no longer owned by the Territory and I should contact the National Capital Authority which I did.
They directed me to their website where I completed an online challenge against the infringement based on the fact that the signs did not indicate it was a paid parking area.
Three months later my wife, who is the registered owner of the car I was using at the time, received a letter from the ACT Government (not Wilson or the NCA) to say the fine had been waived acknowledging that the signage was deficient.
So, the ACT Government can access registered owner details but no one else can or so it appears. It’s still a mystery as to how the ACT Government got involved anyway given the initial advice I was given.
One thing is certain as that is that there are some people in the Government who vehemently oppose Wilson’s wheel clamping and tow-away threats that they use in other States & Territories.

Wilson don’t patrol the Parliamentary triangle, though they do run some carparks inside a few hotels, but they are INSIDE behind boom gates. The triangle is done by the NCA themselves.

Rollersk8r 11:28 am 07 Aug 15

Dame Canberra said :

An interesting development: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-06/canberra-drivers-information-protected-under-new-parking-law/6677590

I was going to say – saw this on the news last night. Although I don’t understand – does this mean parking is now essentially free – because the ACT gov won’t hand over the information?

Not that I park there – but I’d be absolutely furious if wheel clamping ends up as the result of overstaying by a couple of minutes.

dungfungus 11:13 am 07 Aug 15

Dame Canberra said :

An interesting development: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-06/canberra-drivers-information-protected-under-new-parking-law/6677590

It’s hard to work out what actually is happening.
Earlier this year I received a parking infringement from Wilson regarding an alleged parking offence in the Parliamentary Triangle area (where there previously no paid parking).
The signs there did not clearly indicate it was now a paid parking area so I phoned ACT Parking Operations to seek advice and I was bluntly told the area I parked in was no longer owned by the Territory and I should contact the National Capital Authority which I did.
They directed me to their website where I completed an online challenge against the infringement based on the fact that the signs did not indicate it was a paid parking area.
Three months later my wife, who is the registered owner of the car I was using at the time, received a letter from the ACT Government (not Wilson or the NCA) to say the fine had been waived acknowledging that the signage was deficient.
So, the ACT Government can access registered owner details but no one else can or so it appears. It’s still a mystery as to how the ACT Government got involved anyway given the initial advice I was given.
One thing is certain as that is that there are some people in the Government who vehemently oppose Wilson’s wheel clamping and tow-away threats that they use in other States & Territories.

JC 11:12 am 07 Aug 15

dungfungus said :

John Moulis said :

It is disgraceful that private car park operators were let into Canberra in the first place. Didn’t the powers-that-be ever watch one of the reports on A Current Affair about the sleazy and corrupt b*****ds who run private car parks?

Our government knows best – look at the light rail arrogance.
It would be interesting to know how much it is costing us given that it was probably a deal done to “liberate” an asset for short term advantage.

The land was sold ages ago to build a new office building and the owner was allowed to temporarily operate it as a carpark (which it always was). There has been no sell off as infered in the post above, nor any outsourcing or anything. Though you can bet if the Liebrals were in power they would be selling off carparks and other non productive ‘assets’ at a far greater rate, it is just in their DNA.

And if you read the linked article above the Government is actually doing something to ‘help’ protect people ‘fined’ in these private carparks by not giving them the name and address of those who the company wants to pursue and has suggested they should be using boom gates and the like to better protect their carparks.

dungfungus 10:35 am 07 Aug 15

John Moulis said :

It is disgraceful that private car park operators were let into Canberra in the first place. Didn’t the powers-that-be ever watch one of the reports on A Current Affair about the sleazy and corrupt b*****ds who run private car parks?

Our government knows best – look at the light rail arrogance.
It would be interesting to know how much it is costing us given that it was probably a deal done to “liberate” an asset for short term advantage.

John Moulis 4:38 pm 06 Aug 15

It is disgraceful that private car park operators were let into Canberra in the first place. Didn’t the powers-that-be ever watch one of the reports on A Current Affair about the sleazy and corrupt b*****ds who run private car parks?

Dame Canberra 4:09 pm 06 Aug 15
creative_canberran 2:23 pm 06 Aug 15

Rollersk8r said :

I don’t have the full details – but I know fines issued by private carparks are not the same as getting a parking fine on the street. I believe there’s a case (or has been a case) in Victoria recently where the outcome was to basically throw the fine in the bin – they have no authority to issue fines and will have to chase you in court to get it.

The example of fines issued by private carparks has been compared to fines/penalties/damages that the owners of Dallas Buyers Club are currently seeking from people who illegally downloaded the movie. The threats from Dallas Buyers Club are yet to be seen – but the consensus seems to be to just ignore any request for payment – it will not be worth them dragging thousands of individuals to court.

You’re getting a bit mixed up there. Dallas Buyer Club deals with copyright. Private car parking fines deal with contracts. Private carpark operators argue that by entering their property, you entered into a contract.

You’re right that precedent in Victoria is that the supposed penalty under the contract can’t be enforced, because its ridiculous and unfair. And both Victoria and NSW are also taking steps to stop carpark operators from getting the ownership details of vehicles.

And you’re also right that they’re not the same as fines issues under government authority.

However just because they’re basically a letter of demand done up to look like a genuine admin penalty doesn’t mean they should be ignored. Worst case scenario is they do take it further and somehow obtain a judgment which then affects your credit file.

Madam Cholet 10:55 am 06 Aug 15

I park there and wonder about this all the time. OF course, it’s their car park and they set the rules, although I know that Wilson have been in trouble in VIC for calling their penalties ‘fine’. They cannot fine anyone. They can issue infringements and basically recoup what they are out of pocket. I’m not sure if the penalty they quote on the signage at this car park would stand up if challenged as really, they are out of pocket a max of $15. They could also roll in the cost to administer your stay, i.e. check your ticket, provide the machine (albeit a sloooow one), and the upkeep fo the car park.

I am bothered about the taking of number plate details on a couple of levels – one that I cannot use the ticket for any car I choose to park there. For instance, who in their life has not had to swap a car with their other half during the day for some reason or even just the fact that they are stamping out ticket swapping between those going and those coming in (which I always do if I get the chance).

The other thing that really bothers me is that the machine goes through a verification process and I suspect that it is logging the details. I don’t like this as it’s not their direct responsibility, although again, it is their land. I have thought about asking them for an explanation on it, but frankly don’t have time to waste.

The overall thing that bothers me with this is the fact that they treat you like potential criminals – that you are going to pull a swifty if given the chance.

If they would just put in more machines, I think you would hear less sighs in the 20 deep queue every day! And throw into that the Wislon employee coming to empty the machine at peak hour!

I do know with these machines that you can still get a ticket if you press the zero button instead of putting in your number plate. I do also know however that they do go round a few times a day checking tickets. I also note that they don’t ping those who are not parked in actual parking spaces.

Yes, it’s a money making operation. And parking is set to get worse there when they close the short stay car park near the courts to store light rail machinery.

Zultan 9:42 am 06 Aug 15

Like Rollerk8r said only the Police and wardens can issue infringement notices. From a private car park they give you an invoice for failing to meet the published terms and conditions for parking there (they do their best to make it look important and that the sky will fall in if you don’t pay it though)..

Rollersk8r 8:44 am 06 Aug 15

I don’t have the full details – but I know fines issued by private carparks are not the same as getting a parking fine on the street. I believe there’s a case (or has been a case) in Victoria recently where the outcome was to basically throw the fine in the bin – they have no authority to issue fines and will have to chase you in court to get it.

The example of fines issued by private carparks has been compared to fines/penalties/damages that the owners of Dallas Buyers Club are currently seeking from people who illegally downloaded the movie. The threats from Dallas Buyers Club are yet to be seen – but the consensus seems to be to just ignore any request for payment – it will not be worth them dragging thousands of individuals to court.

Dame Canberra 8:11 am 06 Aug 15

I assume it’s legal because they own the car park, which means they can do whatever they want?

What should be illegal is only having two pay parking machines for the entire car park, and it taking several minutes for each driver to get a ticket. Every time I park there the process makes my blood boil.

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