25 February 2013

Parked Parking tickets

Is your PCN in this office?
Word reaches Mr Mustard that stagnant parking tickets from 2010 and 2011 which had not been pursued at or after the Charge Certificate stage, when a ticket penalty is increased by 50%, and which in 2013 motorists will think have been written off and thus they have thrown their own paperwork away, are now being brought back to life and Charge Certificates are being sent out or, the next step, are being registered at the County Court as a debt.

Not surprisingly motorists are confused, astonished or angry, or all three, and are complaining to Barnet Council. Mr Mustard has asked the council this morning exactly what is going on and will get a reply after full investigation in due course.

The question of delay was considered in a Parking Appeals Service case ( Paul Richard Davis v Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea) in March 1998 which set out that councils should act in a timely manner. Over a year is not timely.

In their report for 1995/96 the Parking & Traffic Appeals Service said that a PCN should be cancelled if 6 months had elapsed since the issue of the Charge Certificate (which bumps the penalty up by 50%) and the penalty had not in those 6 months been registered as a debt at the County Court.

Since that time the Code of Practice issued by London Councils says, at para 170, a PCN should be cancelled if there has been a delay of 6 months at any stage of the enforcement process.

So now you know what to do if an old parking ticket appears out of the blue, complain. A request for compensation for distress might make the council move a little quicker to cancel your parking ticket as they should have done when they left it to rot of old age in the first place.

If you receive an Order for Recovery in respect of an old parking ticket you can send a Witness Statement to the County Court to roll the process back and allow for your appeal to be heard in certain circumstances, as follows:

The Witness Statement is an important legal statement which states that you did not receive either:

1.   a Notice to Owner, or
2.   a Notice of Rejection from the council, or
3.   a Notice of Refusal from the Traffic Penalty Tribunal, or
4.   that you paid the penalty charge within 28 days of receiving it. 

On the form you will see ONE of 4 boxes to tick each of which relates to one of the headings above. Only tick one box.

Do not make a false declaration although how you could be found to have made a wrong statement about what happened in 2010 Mr Mustard is not sure.

Mr Mustard would be more inclined though in the first place to telephone customer services at Barnet Council (020 8359 7446) and say he wished to make a complaint and only after giving them a week to sort it out and them failing would he then send a Witness Statement if he was are at that stage.

If you live in Barnet you can also ask one of your ward councillors to help put right this obvious injustice. Find out who they are on this page

Don't pay; fight!

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

1 comment:

  1. Next they'll be clamping people's cars at 3am over parking tickets from 3 years ago (even ones that were paid off), like the cowboy clampers!


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