Aurora company settles with Colorado AG over illegal parking tickets

Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser on Wednesday announced his office reached a settlement with an Aurora-based parking management company that investigators said illegally collected fines from drivers.

Parking Revenue Recovery Services “routinely tried to collect fines from consumers who entered the wrong license plate but paid for parking, paid for parking after the company’s 15-minute grace period or didn’t park in the company’s lots at all but received parking notices anyway,” Weiser’s office said in a news release.

Under the stipulation signed Tuesday, the company agreed to issue over $31,000 in refunds to the more than 400 consumers who paid inappropriately collected fines. Parking Revenue Recovery Services will also dismiss any parking notices for individuals who entered the wrong license plate or were issued notices in error.

“Whether they were told to pay meritless fines for parking they already paid for, or they received a notice in the mail from somewhere they never even parked, hundreds of consumers fell victim to this company’s dishonest tactics,” Weiser said in a statement.

Investigators found the company, through these practices, violated the Colorado Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Parking Revenue Recovery Services denied the allegations but said they wanted to avoid the “inconvenience and expense” of a dispute with the state, according to the 10-page agreement.

John Conway, the company’s co-founder and executive vice president, disputed the AG’s characterization that they engaged in illegal behavior. Parking Revenue Recovery Services issues over 100,000 notices a month across the country, he said. Complaints where the company made an error account for less than 1%.

“We don’t want to ticket people that pay, Conway said in an interview.

The Aurora company has a 1.04 customer review rating with the Better Business Bureau and 1,135 complaints closed in the last three years.

Drivers in Texas and Colorado have reported similar stories to the findings laid out in the attorney general’s investigation.

An individual in San Antonio told WOAI-TV in March that he paid $30 on two separate occasions to park in a lot. But he then later received letters saying he didn’t pay and that he owed $87.

“I think they’re taking people for a ride,” Wilfred Cabrera told the TV station.

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