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Full Version: Quick Question - Bought ticket, parked in wrong bay meters away from machine- £260 later - worth contesting?
FightBack Forums > Queries > Council Tickets & Clamping and Decriminalised Notices
mrenglishman
Hi All,

it's been a while since I was last on here - where thanks to your help I successfully appealed a PCN for parking over a dropped curb.

Anyway, the long and short of it is:

I parked somewhere in London near where I saw a ticket machine. I bought a ticket then returned an hour later to a towed away car.

It turns out that next to the ticket parking bays were a "residents only" bay - this is what the Council pointed out when they denied my appeal.

Do you think its worth taking to arbritration or do I have 0 chance?

Best

Luke

angrybish
Please post up all docs you have front and back & blank out personal details. Only then the experts will be able to advise.
DancingDad
No brainer appealing a tow as you cannot ever pay any more then you already have. And could get a refund.
But post up all documents, pictures and location (streetview) blanked of personal details but leave in times location etc
mrenglishman
image 1 - roughly where i was parked


hi sorry - the other images are too big to upload - how do i downsize them?

Image 2 - my parking ticket
DancingDad
Host them on an external free picture host site then link back here
mrenglishman
http://ul.to/rlbvgbxr - please find attached!
Enceladus
QUOTE (DancingDad @ Wed, 9 Jul 2014 - 12:50) *
Host them on an external free picture host site then link back here

And please don't try to manipulate the image size. Just upload the raw images to the hosting site and then copy and paste the IMG links into your posts on here. The forum software will take care of any sizing issues.
mrenglishman
Parking - Streetview!

** Apologies didn't realise it dual print screened.

So the question I have to ask is - Would it be worth me taking it to arbitration on the grounds that my buying of the ticket from a machine a couple of metres away is indicative of my intention to park in the correct bay. Or is it a waste of time with it been a strict liability offence (i.e mens rea irrelevant)

What do you guys think?
Enceladus
A zip file doesn't really cut it, there are too many malware concerns. A lot if folks simply won't download it. Create a free basic account on somewhere like http://tinypic.com. Upload the photos / scans etc and then copy and paste the IMG links provided into your posts on here.

Please post up the text that you sent to the Council and a scan of the Council response to you. The PCN suggests you had no P&D voucher on display?
mrenglishman
http://tinypic.com/r/3599y6o/8 (my ticket)

http://tinypic.com/r/22goaq/8

http://tinypic.com/r/22goaq/8

http://tinypic.com/r/m7gyz9/8

http://tinypic.com/r/nfmpw3/8 (payment receipt)

This was my email to them:

Dear Kensington and Chelsea Council,



I write in relation to the following:



PCN Number: KE23325188

Date of Contravention : 09/06/2014

Time of Contravention: 10:40



Today was my first time ever parking in London and I had been warned that London was renowned for its parking tickets and ticket wardens. There is therefore a certain level of irony to this email.



I needed to park this morning around the Ladbroke Grove area and after several minutes of driving around I managed to find some parking - or rather pay and display bays that weren't the usual "Residents only." This was evidenced by a clear sign next to the bay saying "P - Pay at Meter" and the fact the actual meter was only a couple of metres away (please see Image 1) Now as I have already said, I was very nervous about the whole parking thing so doubly made sure that I wasn't in a resident's only bay or that there weren't any silly time restrictions (in this case it was 2 hours maximum which was fine)



I purchased a ticket at 10:26 (please see Image 2) and this expired at 12.12. I placed it on the passenger and street side dashboard so it would be visible to the many parking wardens who would be walking by. My car was pounced on not even 9 minutes later and long story short I paid £265 to have it released from the pound.



The contravention was a 12T which I read was not for clearly displaying/having a valid parking ticket.



Now as a teacher, I was already late for my morning class and after having to walk the several miles to collect my car (my phone battery had also ran out also at this point) my afternoon classes were also cancelled. So a costly and disastrous day!





What really confounds me though, and the reason for this appeal is that the ticket was displayed and it was valid. Admittedly, I didn't know that the dash board meant the drivers dash board and I thought getting back into my car during busy traffic was a needless risk, especially when wardens would be walking past the passenger side!



I did make a point of parking in the right bay, putting the right money in and displaying a ticket. In terms of dishonesty there is no evidence that I wanted to defraud the council. The fact I had bought a valid ticket, even if you say it wasn't at the right side is still indicative of my intention to pay and display properly.



I understand that legally there are certain categories this appeal might fall into, and I would contest there are a few, but also I understand there exists the notion that each parking ticket appeal is considered on the individual circumstances. In this case, I would say there are strong mitigating and legal factors why this appeal should be allowed.



There are many examples of appeals been allowed during arbitration where a valid parking ticket has fallen onto the floor of the car, or even where the correct parking ticket was displayed for the wrong bay.



I feel in the circumstances as set out above I would also fall into this bracket. I know the vast majority of PCN's just get paid (especially by the very wealthy in this area) but I am just a poor visitor to the area with entirely honest and lawful intentions.



I really hope you can allow this appeal and refund the amount paid.



Best wishes,



Luke Jones
DancingDad
Got the rejection letter pls.

Seems you had paid and displayed but some issue with where the P&D ticket was displayed ???
What was the issue and how did you find out about it before challenging to council ?

This may be critical, councils can always apply discretion even for a cast iron contravention (seldom seem to) but adjudicators can't.
So we need to explore all details to see how best to frame an appeal to adjudication.
mrenglishman
The rejection letter is at my old house so have asked for a copy to be resent to my new one.

From memory, the council basically said you were in a residents only bay when you shouldn't have been - regardless of whether your ticket was visible or not as it wasn't valid for the residents bay I was parked in - it was valid for the bays a couple of metres up (see street view labels)





I think I may just have to bite the bullet with this one and put it down to inexperience of residents parking in London!

(unless any of you pros can advise a different course!)
DancingDad
Difficult to advise until we get the full story.
You seem to be saying that you were in a P&D bay and had paid and displayed.
Council seem to be saying that that you were in a resident's bay

Have you any of the council photos? They will show which fact is correct.

If council are right, then procedural errors may be only options to argue on. And without paperwork, they will be difficult to establish.
The rejection letter should also have advised that next course of appeal is to adjudication and included the forms to do so.
Have you got them ??
hcandersen
The PCN, which is part of the authority's evidence, is that a P&D was displayed, so why are you setting the non-display hare running as it can only confuse?
According to the authority, you were in a 'permit' bay, because this is what it states in their evidence i.e. the PCN. In fact, it's given twice, once in plain English, the other by the use of the suffix 'T'.
Either you were in a resident's only bay (which is the only basis for this contravention in the circumstances of your case) or you weren't. So can we please focus on where your car was and the road markings. In this respect it is common practice for an authority to take photos of your car in situ, so please get them (NB. not personal after the fact snapshots of where your car nearly was or google maps with no car, but the authority's evidence as to exactly where you were).
mrenglishman
thanks all will post up when received!
angrybish
Am no expert but was wondering if there are potential issues surrounding the wording on PCN?
PCN states:"If the penalty charge notice is not paid before the end of the..."
Should it not be along lines of "the PCN must be paid not later than the last day of the period of 28 days..." ??
I could be wrong there but hopefully the Pros will confirm..
Enceladus
You posted up a photo in post #4 above.
Is your vehicle the black van or is it the silver hatchback?

PS. As this is a PCN & removal it's a no brainer to challenge all the way to adjudication. You have £260 to gain and nothing further to loose.
Please post up scans of everything you received at the pound, excepting the credit/debit card payment voucher.
mrenglishman
Here is a link to download their letter (PDF)

http://uploaded.net/file/lum464kz

Side 1 - http://tinypic.com/r/modo4/8

side 2 - http://tinypic.com/r/2evx2q9/8
DancingDad
Ok,they are adamant that you were in resident's bay and have photos...but nothing on sign
Ladbroke Grove is right long.
Can you identify where you were on streetlink and link it back to us ??
Bogsy
Am I correct in understanding that there is a pay & display bay next to a permit bay? If so then where the two bays meet the DfT recommends that a council place a traffic sign at this juncture with arrows pointing in the direction of each respective restriction. Do the bays meet and if so is there such a sign placed?
mrenglishman
Hi all,

managed to get some better quality pics:

http://tinypic.com/r/9u0pqa/8 - side view of car

http://tinypic.com/r/2aj1e9u/8 - picture of residents sign

http://tinypic.com/r/ei1hm0/8 - back view of car

Any thoughts?

Best

Luke

and yes from the looks of it the bay I was parked and the one before were residents - there was a gap in front of my car (I believe for someones drive) then pay and display bays.
Incandescent
Appeal now ! It is a no-brainer to appeal tows all the way because you have already paid all there is to pay and could get some or all of it back. I would go for disproportionate action under statutory ground "the penalty exceeded the relevant amount in the circumstances of the case", plus there may be issues with clarity of signage. The ticket machine position has clearly lead you astray so needs putting in the appeal

Remember, there are now no additional costs, you have already paid !!!
mrenglishman
This would be an appeal to PATAS adjudication though?

Are there any costs associated?

Best

Luke
Enceladus
No! You have already been told that you have nothing further to loose and everything to gain. So you might as well have a go.

You still haven't answered my question about the photo in post #4 above.
Is your vehicle shown?
Is it a holiday snap?
Or what is it supposed to show?
Was the P&D sign in the photo adjacent to where you parked or what?
mrenglishman
Sorry All I have been a bit all over the place with my information this posting.

This image explains the situation perfectly and shows the actual positions and situation.

http://tinypic.com/r/2ahy4wj/8

To be honest Enceladus I dont really know what that image had to do with anything - when i first made my represenations I couldn't find exactly where it was on the map so actually dont think it has any relevance.

From looking at the above image I feel a bit more positive as I think it is certainly midleading and an easy mistake to make!

Thanks as ever
Incandescent
Frankly the photo shows you bang-to-rights, basically, the bay you parked in has its own sign and the sign you saw applies to the other one, with a single yellow in between. If you were just fighting a PCN, then you'd lose but you were towed, and as you had a parking ticket on display, the argument is that the PCN was a sufficient penalty (even at discount it will be £65, not trivial !).

So you appeal to PATAS on disproportionate action, under statutory ground of "the penalty exceeded the relevant amount in the circumstances of the case". You have nothing to lose and at least the towing charge to gain if you win.
Bogsy
I would still make your primary appeal point the adequacy of the signage since this is why you bought a pay and display ticket. As a secondary and third point I suggest you include the text below (keep formatting for emphasis). These points are just as relevant but the signage issue is more palatable for an adjudicator to swallow.

I must remind the Council that the contravention alleged on the PCN is a road traffic contravention subject to civil enforcement. It is the TMA 2004 that regulates civil enforcement and yet, apart from the imposed penalty charge no other aspect of civil enforcement pursuant to the TMA 2004 has been observed by the Council.

I have been deprived of my statutory right to have an informal challenge considered, my right to receive a Notice to Owner and my right to make formal representations under the correct prescribed grounds. All these rights prevail where a regulation 9 PCN is served and these rights are clearly conveyed within the statutory content of the PCN.

If the council are advocating that these statutory rights are not applicable then in essence the council is suggesting the PCN is otiose for the TMA 2004 does not enable a PCN to only apply in part. If the PCN is otiose then I contend that the PCN is a nullity and thus removal was unlawful.

If the Council refute that the PCN is a nullity and believe that I was liable to pay a penalty charge then there can be no dispute that I was entitled to make representations in accordance with those regulations made under s.80 TMA 2004.

80 Representations and appeals
(1)The Lord Chancellor may make provision by regulations entitling a person
(a)who is or may be liable to pay a penalty charge, or
(b)who secures the release of a vehicle from an immobilisation device on payment of an amount in accordance with regulations under section 79,
to make representations to the enforcement authority and to appeal to an adjudicator if his representations are not accepted.

These regulations are provided under Parts 2 and 3 of the Civil Enforcement of Parking Contraventions (England) Representations and Appeals Regulations 2007.

The Council has not observed my entitlement to make representations in accordance with regulations made under s.80 TMA 2004. Failing to observe a requirement of the TMA 2004 is a procedural impropriety, therefore my representations should be accepted.

Furthermore, the statutory guidance issued by the Secretary of State does under paragraph 52 instruct that councils should formulate and publish their removal policy and that removal should not be random. Unless the council can provide evidence that the removal accorded with the Council's removal policy, I contend that removal in this instance was a random act and no regard to the statutory guidance was given. Having no regard is a procedural impropriety.
Mad Mick V
As it's a tow case I would argue that it is an incorrect contravention since it should be IMO Code 19 Parked in a residents' or shared use parking place or zone either displaying an invalid permit or voucher or pay and display ticket, or after the expiry of paid for time. It's a lower penalty too.

Have a look at this case:-

http://forums.pepipoo.com/index.php?showtopic=91680&hl=

When London Councils brought in Code 12 and altered Code 19 they agreed the following:-

"It is therefore suggested that a new code (Code 12) be added to allow for people who have neither a visitors (or other) permit nor a pay and display ticket but are parked in a residents’ or shared use bay and Code 19 be amended slightly as given below :
add new Code 12: parked in a residents' or shared use parking place without clearly displaying either a permit or voucher or pay and display ticket issued for that place (for use in London only)
amend Code 19 to: parked in a residents' or shared use parking place displaying an invalid permit, an invalid voucher or an invalid pay & display ticket.

In addition, Code 15 could no longer be used in London (to avoid duplicating the same contravention in two different penalty bands).

Code 12 would be used for situations where there was no permit or pay and display ticket displayed and would attract the higher penalty charge. Code 19 would be used for situations where there was a permit or pay and display ticket displayed but time had expired or the permit was incorrectly completed etc. and would attract the lower penalty charge."

Might as well argue wrong contravention and higher level charge in any appeal.

Mick
mrenglishman
Thanks chaps - some really good stuff here.

I looked at the other forum post regarding the 12T and would be very interested as to the outcome.

Mad Mick - what is the provenance of your statement: "it is therefore suggested..." - at first glance it seems advisory as opposed to compulsory but I would be prepared to read into this in detail!

I will certainly be taking this to PATAS - I'm based in London and if anything else its good advocacy practise before I start my Barrister course in September biggrin.gif



Interesting, it's from: London Councils Transport and Environment Committee – Urgency Procedure

Of note:

"Recommendations:
amend Code 19: parked in a residents' or shared use parking place displaying an invalid permit, an invalid voucher or an invalid pay & display ticket"


I think, as you were saying, labelling it as a 12T offence is essentially procedural impropriety as they are not following their own guidance.

I shall chase this up to see if these recommendations were actually implemented or not.
Mad Mick V
Here's the decision, as I noted it was agreed, there have been no subsequent amendments other than to apply the contraventions o/s London too.

London Councils Transport and Environment Committee agreed at their meeting on 8 December 2006 to set the level of parking penalties depending on whether the parking contraventions was deemed to be more serious or less serious (according to the following defined list of contravention codes).

In Appendix 1, Codes 15 and 19 are defined as:
Code 15: Parked in a residents’ parking space without clearly displaying a valid residents’ parking permit
Code 19: Parked in a parking place without clearly displaying the required permit or pay and display ticket

Code 15 is currently set at the higher penalty level (e.g. £120 for Band A) and Code 19 is set at the lower penalty level (e.g. £80 for Band A).

At the December TEC meeting, there was discussion regarding which category contraventions in residents’ bays (Code 15) and shared bays (Code 19) should be placed. The London Borough of Islington wished to see Code 15 in the lower penalty category as they were concerned that there was no distinction between visitors to residents and other people, who were subject to the higher penalty charge for contraventions in residents’ bays. The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham wished to see shared bays in the higher category as most of their residents permits were used in shared bays.

It was agreed that the Director of Transport, Environment and Planning would work with the London Borough of Islington and the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham to modify the definitions of the codes used.

Proposed Solution

Both boroughs concerns can be addressed if the residents bays and shared use bays codes were merged but a distinction made between people who do not have any type of permit or ticket and those who have bought a ticket or have a visitor’s permit but have overstayed on the time paid or scratched off the wrong date.

A possible solution would be to amend both Code 15 (residents bay) and Code 19 (shared use bays), however Code 15 is used in many of the circa 150 authorities outside London who operate Decriminalised Parking Enforcement (and who use London Councils’ contravention code list), and amending Code 15 would mean that all these authorities would need to update their systems etc.

It is therefore suggested that a new code (Code 12) be added to allow for people who have neither a visitors (or other) permit nor a pay and display ticket but are parked in a residents’ or shared use bay and Code 19 be amended slightly as given below :
add new Code 12: parked in a residents' or shared use parking place without clearly displaying either a permit or voucher or pay and display ticket issued for that place (for use in London only)
amend Code 19 to: parked in a residents' or shared use parking place displaying an invalid permit, an invalid voucher or an invalid pay & display ticket.

In addition, Code 15 could no longer be used in London (to avoid duplicating the same contravention in two different penalty bands).

Code 12 would be used for situations where there was no permit or pay and display ticket displayed and would attract the higher penalty charge. Code 19 would be used for situations where there was a permit or pay and display ticket displayed but time had expired or the permit was incorrectly completed etc. and would attract the lower penalty charge.
mrenglishman
So Procedural Impropriety it is -

I will keep you informed!
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