Crackdown on parking fines imminent?

23 October 2013

Bitterwallet - appeal parking tickets According to MPs, motorists who appeal against what they believe to be an unjust parking ticket should still be given a 25% discount, even if they lose their appeal. This idea has come about in a bid to help drivers to feel more at ease when challenging tickets and would put an end to the process that gives you a discount for paying it immediately, whether you're guilty or not.

There should also be a 5 minute ‘grace period’ before having a ticket slapped on the windscreen and that CCTV should be stopped from spying on motorists to stop everyone from being looked at like they're 'wallets n wheels,' they added.

Not only that, we shouldn't have to appeal against parking tickets where tribunal adjudicators have noticed repeat problems, such as poor signage and the like.

In essence, it looks like this is an attempt to put an end to cowboy councils and parking firms who are rinsing everyone. To bring some kind of fairness and transparency, councils could soon be asked to publish annual parking-charge reports to show where their income comes from and how it is being used, according to a report by the House of Commons’ Transport Select committee.

The use of parking charges and fines specifically to raise revenue is "neither acceptable nor legal", said its chairman Louise Ellman, Labour MP for Liverpool Riverside, who added: "There is a deep-rooted public perception that parking enforcement is used as a cash cow, so it's essential that local authorities apply stringent transparency."

"Annual parking accounts would allow the public to see how much local revenue is derived from the enforcement of fines, and what proportion of this come from on or off-street parking charges. It's right that parking charges be determined locally, but hard to justify fines that substantially exceed penalties for more serious offences like speeding."

"A 25 per cent penalty charge discount should also be introduced for motorists who pay within seven days of losing any appeal to a parking tribunal. Local authorities currently offer a 50 per cent discount if motorists pay their penalty charge within 14 days, but remove this benefit entirely from motorists who appeal to a tribunal."

AA president Edmund King said: "The AA receives many complaints about parking enforcement and we believe that some of the measures in this report would help to ease the situation. In particular we welcome the five-minute grace period as many drivers are petrified that rushing into the corner shop for change for the pay & display will cost them dearly."

"Offering a 25 per cent discount to those who lose appeals is a step in the right direction but we still feel that the full discount should be offered."

TOPICS:   Motoring


  • Alexis
    And whilst all this is going on, parasitic private parking companies are ripping everybody off left right and centre.
  • People P.
    “Offering a 25 per cent discount to those who lose appeals is a step in the right direction but we still feel that the full discount should be offered.” So there is no penalty for appealing - so everyone appeals, raises the councils' costs massively and so justifies even higher penalty charges? "In particular we welcome the five-minute grace period as many drivers are petrified that rushing into the corner shop for change for the pay & display will cost them dearly.” It is important to distinguish between offences arising at official parking spaces (failure to display , overstaying etc) and parking illegally - if it is unsafe to park on a yellow line "only five minutes" is irrelevant
  • Quietus
    I agree with the five-minute grace period. A few times I've been places, and only wanted to pull up for a few minutes, and had to worry about tickets. I remember going to my folks' once, and was parked for all of 90 seconds, and got a ticket. He must have been hiding in a hedge or something. =)
  • jokester2
    @People People: That does appear to be a downside but plenty of people have reasonable grounds to appeal the ticket but currently get penalised for this. Like, I once had a parking permit and parked somewhere that was definitely covered according to the permit map but it turned out the map was wrong and I ended up having to pay the FULL fine when I could have got 50% off... not fair in any way. Another point I'd like to make is that the majority of traffic wardens are simply bullies with no sense of decency, no morals whatsoever. Although I'm a pacifist, I can sympathize with those people that beat the shit out of traffic wardens - most of them deserve it! Oh - and anyone who says "they're just doing their job" - Yes but so were Nazi soldiers in WW2.
  • jokester2
    I've currently got bailiffs after me for a parking fine that occurred after I'd sold my car to someone else. This was 3.5 years ago and only now am I finding out about this!!! They completely ignore your human rights to a fair trial, and the bailiffs are acting as Judge, Jury and Executioner..... how the fuck is this legal???
  • Warwick H.
    if your nicked for parking follow a few rules and you have more than a chance of avoiding the fine' check and photograph the yellow lines - they must be unbroken. check the signing and what condition it is in grafitti, stickers etc check if the sign is clearly visible and not obstructed by other signs and correctly sited within the restriction. check the TRO traffic regulation order to see if it complies to the signing and lining - a copy can be requested from the Council. check to see if the signs comply with TSRGD 2002 - sign size - text size etc. be aware that double yellow lines no longer require signs (Fig 637) you have the right of appeal fines can only be levied by the courts or the legal highway authortity. this goes for everything including speeding.sign illumination is a good one for this.councils are cutting corners to save cash so be observant. I am a retired local authority traffic inspector so I know what I am talking about.
  • Warwick H.
    One more thing to the above - ask who considered the appeal if it fails and are they qualified to do so. a lot of Councils are using unqualified staff at a lower salary to save money.
  • Quietus
    It seems to differ from council to council too. My local aren't too bad with it, and if you appeal against a fine, then regardless of the outcome, you're given a new two-week grace period to pay the discounted fine.
  • Justin A.
    I wrote the below with some links, but of course it'll be stuck in 'moderation' forever, so here it is without them. @Alexis, just know that private parking companies are issuing you with an invoice (e.g. for overstaying) and cannot legally issue a penalty under statute. Only councils do that. Plenty of info on the web at MoneySavingExpert and AppealNow.

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