Today’s post will be a quickie.
When it comes to paying parking tickets or any other ticket for that matter they say – Google first, pay later. This seems to be the invaluable advice with most things today.
It is also said – no good deed goes unpunished. A saying that’s only true from one case to the next. Especially in the world of parking and parking tickets.
At some point, most drivers have wonder whether they really have to pay parking tickets on private property— it turns out, probably not. Yet, nobody knows for sure, and is still a guessing game for most.
Many will argue that independent parking control companies cannot issue parking tickets on private property. Others argue that private control can issue parking tickets on private property – after all they’re hired by the building management, however the parking tickets aren’t worth anything – unlike the parking tickets issued by the city (your local municipality) that are very valid and legal.
Here in Toronto, any unpaid parking tickets, speeding tickets or other tickets issues by the city, region or province are totally valid, and if unpaid will stand to interest charges. Furthermore, and more importantly, it will limit the driver on renewing their annual license-plate sticker. So, when you try to renew the sticker at the local Ministry of Transportation office, you’ll be denied due to outstanding balance – and you do have the option to pay up on the spot.
I’ve personally have never had to deal with “private” parking tickets, and I’m generally quite selective on where I park. So, instead I wanted to share a true story from this past weekend that happened to a close friend. But before I get into the story, you should know that my condo’s visitor parking is controlled by a private parking company.
Parking Wars 101
Myself and a few friends decided to head out for the night on the town. Everyone came over, and thankfully found parking, because most weekends it’s a gong-show trying to find visitor parking. Popular building I suppose.
After a night on the town, we got back to my place again, hung out, and a friend decided to crash – as he typically does, and has made my three seater sofa a permanent bed in my home. Seriously, sometimes when I look at the sofa, his body shape is permanently implanted in the sofa, and by no surprise. After all, the guy is 6’6 and weights about 240 pounds – go figure!
So, typically as he’s done it in the past, he would stay the night, and leave early in the morning. This time it was no different, except when he went downstairs he couldn’t find his car in a straight row of twelve visitor parking spots. Yup, it was gone!
Needless to say I was awoken by loud banging on my door at 7am of him trying to get back in as he had no ride to go home.
Initially, we thought the car was stolen, and for a moment he was happy (sorta celebrating) in hopes that he’d cash in through insurance. We spent a few minutes in in a daze and confusion, as we tried to estimate his car’s worth for a possible payout from insurance.
Eventually he got around to call the cops at the local division, they ran his plates, and discovered that his car was not actually stolen – it was towed. After a quick Google search, he called the towing company, and within a few minutes discovered the location of his car, and $420 fee that it would cost him to get the car out of the impound.
Long story short, I drove us to the impound lot (and it was closed for the long-weekend), however after another quick call, the owner agreed to come in, and settle the bill. Everything worked out in the end, and after the payment was made, my friend got his car back.
Charges of $420 total broken down as follows:
x2 – $45 unpaid parking tickets from the past spanning over 4 months
x1 – $45 parking ticket issued at the night of the tow
x1 – $285 for towing and impound
Moral of the Story
Either pay your parking tickets on time, or never park in that parking lot again if you’re owing. And if you’re uncertain, just for good measure pay your ticket or be really certain on the bylaws of your city.
Like they say; You can run, but you can’t hide. My friend found out the hard way. What could have been $90 out his pocket over four months, he paid 78.6% more – something that could have totally been avoided.
In conclusion, I’ll leave you with some more food for thought with another relatively great similar article recently published in Toronto Star that looks at a case of private parking tickets - Parking ticket on private land? It may be the ticket that’s illegal.
Readers, have you ever had parking ticket infractions? What was the end result? Were you ever in a situation that you car got towed?
FYI – If you’re looking to save on gas, check out 5 full proof ways to beat rising gas prices.
Photo Credit (pah57)