Aberdare Parking

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Aberdare Parking

Aberdare parking in Mid Glamorgan is getting harder by the day. There appear to be more yellow lines, additional traffic wardens, less free car parking and even superstores are now charging for you to park and shop with them...where will it all end?

Hopefully we can help you with your parking in Aberdare. If you have established a parking fine or ticket at the same time as parking in Aberdare, then we are here to make your life a bit easier.

To begin with there are two distinct types of parking ticket which are a Penalty Charge Notice or a Parking Charge Notice. It is very important for your wallet that you are unmistakable about which one you have received. If the ticket is a bureaucratic notice from Aberdare council or Aberdare police then you have been given 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 public domain land. 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 ought to refer to the Aberdare council or Aberdare police for counsel on what to do after that. Aberdare council will have thorough information on their web pages 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.

Frequently they supply a discount (how nice of them) if you pay within a certain time frame.

The notice ought to also contain obvious detail of what parking violation you are accused of committing and contain any corroboration, such as a video, which is being relied upon to verify you committed the offence. Crucially, the PCN ought to in addition include clear instructions of what to do if you want to dispute the penalty, along with details of the appeals process and the timescales involved.

If you are in any doubt as to what to do when you obtain a pcn, it is always a nice idea to get separate guidance from the Aberdare Citizen's Advice Bureau, or a Aberdare lawyer. The Law Society can provide details of a Aberdare solicitor.

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

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

More often than not, such restrictions will mean 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 noticeably and concisely on signs as you enter the car park and at additional points across the location, along with info about parking fees and any ensuing charges which could be incurred for failing to comply. If you pick up a parking charge notice you ought to check that these terms are appropriately displayed at the car park in question. If you discover they are not, you may desire to write to the company to appeal the charge.

The most important difference between an official penalty charge issued by the establishment and a parking charge issued by a private company is that there is not anything in criminal law to support a penalty or fine for parking on private land. For that reason they should not be described as penalties or fines, although loads of 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 a claim for damages. The total they ask for is to compensate for you breaching the contract you created when you parked on the property in question. According to the CAB, this rate should be fair and in line with the loss suffered by the company, even though extreme 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 recover a parking charge from you without first taking you to court, so if you suppose there has been an error and you should not 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 give evidence of their argument 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 corroborate their argument in court, but it is advisable to seek advice from the CAB or a solicitor before things get to this stage. Bear in mind that the parking operator has to prove its case on the balance of probabilities.

It is also significant to note that, as things currently exist, the driver of the vehicle is the only person who can enter into a contract with the proprietor. Consequently 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 bestow the parking operator with any further info, 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 certain that you have not parked in contravention of the rules 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 confirm its case. However you should let them know that you contest the notice as if not, you can look forward to a progression of letters from the company itself, debt collectors and solicitors, all warning of court action. However, the reality is that very 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 just.

The bottom line is it is going to be very hard for these companies to demonstrate 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 stuff you want to buy.