Tiptree Parking

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Tiptree Parking

Tiptree parking in Essex is getting more difficult by the day. There seem to be additional yellow lines, more traffic wardens, a smaller amount free car parking and even supermarkets are now charging for you to park and shop with them...where will it all end?

With any luck uk comprehensive can assist you with your parking in Tiptree. If you have received a parking ticket or fine whilst parking in Tiptree, then we are here to assist.

To start with there are 2 discrete types of parking ticket which are a Penalty Charge Notice and a Parking Charge Notice. It is imperative for your wallet that you are clear about which notice you've received. If the ticket is an official notice from Tiptree council or Tiptree police then you've been issued a PENALTY CHARGE NOTICE (PCN). Only the Police and the Council are allowed to issue PCN's and it means that you are being fined for parking illegally on civic property. Such an offence is backed up by criminal law and you can be fined or end up in court for not paying your fine.

If you have received a Penalty Charge Notice issued by a council or police force then you should refer to the Tiptree council or Tiptree police for counsel on what to do next. Tiptree council will have comprehensive information on their website outlining how long you have got to pay the fine, how to pay the fine and the penalties involved if you fail to pay within the time limit.

More often than not they afford a markdown (how nice of them) if you pay within a set period of time.

The notice should as well include plain detail of what parking violation you are accused of doing and contain any verification, such as a photograph, which is being relied upon to establish you committed the offence. Significantly, the PCN ought to also include clear instructions of what to do if you want to dispute the penalty, along with details of the appeals modus operandi and the timescales involved.

If you are in any doubt as to what to do when you pick up a pcn, it is always a good idea to get independent counsel from the Tiptree Citizen's Advice Bureau, or a Tiptree lawyer. The Law Society can provide details of a Tiptree solicitor.

If you have got a Parking Charge Notice then you have received this from a private parking business. A private parking company is an organisation which has entered into a pact with a landlord to enforce any parking restrictions they choose to place on their property.

A proprietor typically supermarkets, hospitals, retail shopping centres - creates a car park or uses the existing one - they will set out restrictions typically in a sign displayed on the land which you agree to abide by when you park on that terrain. By choosing to park on the land it may be implied that you agree to these conditions, especially if the notice is clear and prominently displayed and you are hence entering into a deal with the business running the car park.

More often than not, such restrictions will comprise a set time limit, a requisite to pay and display or a no-return policy. The terms and conditions of the car park should be displayed openly and concisely on signs as you enter the car park and at further points across the site, along with info about parking charges and any consequent charges which could be incurred for failing to comply. If you receive a parking charge notice you should check that these terms are accurately displayed at the car park in question. If you find they aren't, you may desire to write to the company to appeal the charge.

The main divergence relating an official penalty charge issued by the authorities and a parking charge issued by a private business is that there is naught in criminal law to support a penalty or fine for parking on private land. Hence they should not be described as penalties or fines, even though various parking operators will label their notices a Parking Charge Notice, which handily also abbreviates to PCN (what a coincidence!).

In giving out a Parking Charge Notice, the parking operator is relying on the law of contract to make an entitlement for costs. The sum they ask for is to compensate for you breaching the contract you created when you parked on the land in question. According to the Citizen's Advice Bureau, this charge ought to be acceptable and in line with the loss suffered by the business, even though excessive charges are common. This is not a criminal matter despite any impression given to the contrary by the operator.

The operator has no right to claim a parking charge from you without first taking you to court, so if you feel there has been a lapse and you shouldn't have been issued a ticket, you may wish to dispute the charge with the parking company as soon as possible. You should ask them to provide confirmation of their case against you. If you fail to reach an agreement with them, then, as with all civil matters, it is up to the parking company to show their argument in court, but it is advisable to seek advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau or a solicitor before things get to this phase. Remember that the parking operator has to corroborate its case on the balance of probabilities.

It is also foremost to write down that, as things presently stand, the driver of the vehicle is the only person who can enter into a contract with the property-owner. Thus if you were not the person driving you may wish to inform the parking company of this straight away. Just because you are the registered keeper of the vehicle, you are under no legal obligation to impart the parking operator with any further information, as you would be with the police. In particular you do not have to identify the driver or supply his or her name and address.

Indeed if you are assured that you have not parked in contravention of the regulations of the car park, you do not have to contact the parking company if you do not wish to do so as the obligation is on the parking company to prove its case. However you should let them know that you contest the notice as if not, you can expect a succession of letters from the company itself, debt collectors and solicitors, all warning of court action. However, the reality is that extremely few cases ever reach court because of the difficulties the private company has in proving its case. As a result, the letters usually stop. Even if a case does reach court, the company may have trouble convincing a judge that the charge is fair.

The bottom line is it's going to be very hard for these companies to establish you are a guilty party in this. In 99.99% of cases the best thing to do is rip up the ticket and throw it away. We would recommend not to contact the company (as you are handing them your details) or waste your time and money consulting a solicitor. Most of these companies do not provide proper signage - in other words they are straightforward to miss when you are busy thinking of all the things you want to purchase.