Parking fines are some of the most annoying and frustrating things you can get through the post. You might be totally unaware that you’ve parked in the wrong place or stayed longer than you should have until you get a letter through your door. Often, such letters will be at least vaguely threatening, which can be very stressful. However, it doesn’t have to be. We take a look at how to deal with ZZPS debt collection when it comes to parking fines.
It’s not your fault. Complaints to the Financial Ombudsman have risen this year from 830 to 2,006, so it’s safe to say that you’re not alone.
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Who are ZZPS?
ZZPS are a debt collection agency. They’re a London-based firm that operates around the UK. Their registered office address is 71-75 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London WC2H 9JQ. However, they also have another contact address on their website, which is Bacchus House, 1 Station Road, Addlestone, Surrey, KT15 2AG.
Unlike many other debt collectors, they only focus on unpaid parking charges. So, they don’t purchase other types of debt, and they don’t issue parking tickets themselves.
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Why are they contacting me?
You’ve probably never head of ZZPS before unless you’ve already had a parking fine chased by them. They don’t own any parking lots or similar. Instead, they try to collect money on behalf of parking companies. This usually means that they’ll take a fee if they’re successful, so it’s in their interests to hound people to pay.
If ZZPS have written to you, it’s likely that you’ve got an unpaid parking fine with another company. On the letter, it should give details or where and when the fine originates from, as well as how much you owe. Often, such companies often have vague (or obvious) threats of legal action if you don’t pay.
Are they legitimate?
This is a question that’s often asked of companies like ZZPS debt collection. It can be surprising and unpleasant to receive a letter from them, after all. However, a short amount of research shows that they are indeed a real company, so you need to take the situation seriously.
ZZPS Limited is a private limited company that was incorporated in November 2011. According to Companies House, they have a company number of 07846404. They’re also approved by the British Parking Association.
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Is ZZPS debt collection the same as bailiffs?
There are several important distinctions between a debt collection agency and a bailiff. The first thing to mention is that ZZPS are not a bailiff, which means that their powers are limited. Let’s have a look at some of the important differences:
- Debt collection agencies have no more powers than the company that issued the original fine, and they’re not allowed to pretend otherwise.
- Bailiffs (known as enforcement agents) can come to your home and seize your belongings to cover the cost of your debt. Debt collectors can’t.
- Debt collection agencies can visit your home, but they have no right to enter your property.
The distinction between these two types of organisation is important, especially if you’re dealing with ZZPS. They don’t have any powers to enter your home or take your belongings. Neither a debt collector nor a bailiff can threaten or harass you.
Can they affect my credit score?
Of course, you might be worried that having ZZPS debt collection chasing you for money will impact your credit rating. Thankfully, they have no power here either, at least not initially. For a debt collection agency to impact your credit score, they must first send you a Letter before County Court action.
Once this happens, you will then receive a County Court Claim. If you lose this and still refuse to pay your debt within 28 days, the debt will appear on your credit report. Until that stage, ZZPS cannot impact your credit file.
Can they increase my debt?
You’ll often find that debt collection agencies will try and add additional recovery costs to your debt. Usually, these are an attempt to scare you into paying before the amount gets too much. However, there are certain rules around how much they can increase it by.
Another thing to consider is that they may settle for less than the original amount. If you contact ZZPS, they may accept a lower level of payment than they originally demanded.
How should I deal with ZZPS debt collection?
So, you’ve received a ZZPS debt collection letter, what should you do? There are several steps you can take to resolve the situation:
Follow my ‘prove it’ guide with letter templates and get them to prove that you owe the money.
If you think that you were in the wrong when it comes to the parking fine, you might want to simply pay what you owe. This is often the quickest way to settle the matter and stop the debt collection company from chasing you for money. Again, if they’ve added fees, you might want to dispute these and agree to pay the original amount instead.
Appeal to the parking company
ZZPS won’t listen to any appeals when it comes to parking fines. However, the original parking company might. You can contact them and provide specific information about your case and why the fee should be waived. Of course, they’re not obliged to cancel your parking fine, but they might call off ZZPS from chasing you.
Contact the retailer
If you received your parking fine while parking in a retailer’s car park, you might want to contact them to discuss the matter. They might be willing to contact the parking company on your behalf to get them to drop the charge. Again, there’s no obligation for them to do so, but if you’re a regular customer, they might consider it.
Wait and see
An initial letter from ZZPS Ltd isn’t the end of the world. If they’re chasing a relatively small fine, they might give up after an attempt or two. And, as we’ve mentioned, they don’t really have any legal powers at this time. You could try waiting to see if they send you a Letter before County Court claim (LBCCC). If they don’t, they might have stopped chasing you. However, if they do, then you’ll need to act quickly to avoid a CCJ.