Minister: parking fines will rest with hirers

The government has confirmed that vehicle rental and leasing companies will retain the ability to have parking fines transferred to the drivers who incur them.

“Liability for any parking charges during the period of hire will rest with the hirer of the vehicle,” said Home Office Minister Lynne Featherstone last week.

The ministerial assurance came in response to the BVRLA’s lobbying on the Protection of Freedoms Bill. Had this gone unchallenged, the bill, now in its final stage in the House of Commons, would have allowed private parking firms to hold a vehicle’s registered keeper liable for unpaid parking charges. Now, as long as relevant documentation is provided, rental companies will be able to make representations to have liability for these fines transferred to the hirer of the vehicle, just as they already do for fines issued by local authorities.

Featherstone also agreed to consider updating the bill’s definition of a hire agreement to preserve leasing firms’ right to transfer liability in the same way that short-term rental companies can.