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PCN Code 12(s) in Barnet, How to display a visitors permit before visiting
Partyof5
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 14:39
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Hi,
I received a PCN for parking in a visitors bay without displaying a visitors permit. I argued that, during the time the PCN was given (after one minute's observation), I was at my friend's front door getting the voucher. There could have been no more than 5 minutes maximum between parking and returning to the car with the voucher. I sent a copy of said voucher, validated for the time of the alleged contravention, when I made my informal challenge. Barnet's response was that "vehicles are not permitted to stop within a residents / shared use parking space without displaying a valid permit / voucher".
This sounds ridiculous to me but I can't find actual legislation to support my claim that a short amount of time is reasonable to be abe to leave your car to get a visitors permit. As I'd never been to this friend's house before, I didn't already have a voucher in my car when I parked.
Can anyone help me with my representations against the Notice to Owner please?
Please see attached scans of the PCN, Visitor's voucher, Informal challege rejection and Notice to Owner.
Many thanks
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post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 14:39
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nextdoor
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 14:59
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Motorists are allowed time to obtain a visitor permit, however 5 mns is pushing it (hope you didn't mention that in your informal challenge!!)

With only 1 min observation time the CEO is unable to ascertain whether you are in contravention or not.

Were you parked some distance from the house you were visiting. Were the permits to hand. Did you need to have how the
permit is to be filled in explained to you. All these can explain the time spent before you returned to your car.

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stamfordman
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 15:10
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They say you have to display the voucher before leaving the vehicle unattended which is impossible unless you can get someone to come out and give you the voucher.

Obviously you can do this by calling them on the phone (but what if they are housebound) but as nextdoor say you are allowed time to go get it but no more than that.
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hcandersen
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 16:55
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OP, where is your challenge please, it's important.
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Guest_Bogsy_*
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 17:11
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You are allowed reasonable time to collect a permit from the householder and return to your vehicle to display it. The principle works the same as being allowed time to go to a pay and display ticket machine and come back and put the ticket in your vehicle.

This post has been edited by Bogsy: Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 17:11
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Incandescent
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 17:14
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You have the Notice to Owner, so the discount has gone, therefore it's a no-brainer to take them to London Tribunals as (1) the penalty will not increase, and (2) your case is very strong, and backed-up by many successful appeals at adjudication. Their rather obtuse letter condemns them straight away.

Getting a permit from a resident is regarded as no different to going to a machine to get a ticket. However we need to see what you sent them as your reps. Going to your friend, then having a cup of tea before returning to the car with the permit is not permitted. One adjudication some years ago saw a council saying in its evidence that the motorist must carry the permit vouchers in his car. This was shot down in flames by the adjudicator. The council may have been this one, Barnet, and if so, they have clearly not learnt anything.

This post has been edited by Incandescent: Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 17:14
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Partyof5
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 17:59
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Thanks all. Unfortunately I send my challenge via Barnet’s online portal so I don’t have a copy (rookie
error!). But it was truthful so would have said I parked a little way from the house, crossed the road and walked my three kids (ages 3,6 and 8 so wouldn’t have been super speedy but not excessively slow either) to the door of my friend’s house where I scratched off the correct date on the voucher. When I got back to my car the PCN was there and no sign of the CEO. It would have taken me just as long to pay at a machine so that’s a good point, thanks. Happy to take this one all the way, will let you know how I get on!
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hcandersen
post Thu, 11 Jan 2018 - 22:09
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OP, pl don't be casual about this.

The authority's response refers to you being in your friend's house, apparently completing the permit.

So, let's be absolutely clear without editorialising:

I parked at *** in order to visit my friend by arrangement;
I left the car and escorted my 3 children to the house where I met my friend, the occupier, who by arrangement gave me a visitor's voucher which I immediately proceeded to complete prior to returning to my car to display the permit in the specified position.

Is one version

I wandered over to their house, went inside while we allocated bedrooms to the children, had a chat and a cup of tea, finally got around to filling in a permit and returned to my car to find a PCN...

Is another version.

What we need is bald facts.
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Mr Mustard
post Fri, 12 Jan 2018 - 07:16
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Barnet Council love to mislead people into paying (they rarely make errors in favour of the motorist).

Tribunal case 2140052218 says this:

Mrs Depauw does not dispute that her car was parked in this parking bay without displaying a permit. However she has maintained from the outset that she came to visit a resident in the street, and only left the car without a permit for the time it took to go to her house, obtain and complete a visitor's voucher and return to the car, a process she estimates as taking about 3 minutes. She points out that the Civil Enforcement Officer (CEO) issued the Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) after only one minute's observation, and suggests that he/she must have actually seen her leave the car. Mrs Depauw has now produced a letter from Alice Yardley, the occupier of 79 Salisbury Road, the person whom she was visiting, which confirms her account. The Enforcement Authority have insisted throughout that a permit or voucher must be displayed from the moment the car is parked in such a bay, and that no period of grace is allowed. Mrs Depauw contends, by contrast, that it is not possible for a visitor to a resident to have a visitor's voucher already in her possession; it is necessary to go to the resident's house to obtain it, and so a short time must be allowed for this to be done. I am perplexed by the Authority's stance in this case. It is self-evident that a reasonable period must be allowed for a visitor to obtain and complete a visitor's voucher from a resident, for the reasons Mrs Depauw has clearly set out. Had the CEO observed the vehicle for, say, five or more minutes, then it would have been reasonable to assume that the owner was not obtaining a visitor's voucher, but by allowing only one minute that assumption could not be safely made. In this case I am satisfied that it was in fact wrongly made. I am not satisfied that the contravention occurred, and so I allow this appeal. [I would respectfully suggest that the Authority give some thought to the instructions they give to their CEO's and to their decision-makers in relation to this issue.]

I would take the PCN to the tribunal if the council reject the representations to the Notice to Owner.


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All advice given by me on PePiPoo is on a pro bono basis (i.e. free). PePiPoo relies on Donations so do donate if you can. Sometimes I will, in addition, personally offer to represent you at the tribunal & if you wish me to I will ask you to make a voluntary donation, if the Appeal is won, directly to the North London Hospice.
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