Chipping Norton Parking

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Chipping Norton Parking

Chipping Norton parking in Oxfordshire is getting harder by the day. There seem to be further yellow lines, extra traffic wardens, with a reduction of free car parking and even superstores are now charging for you to park and shop with them...where will it all end?

With a bit of luck uk comprehensive can help you with your parking in Chipping Norton. If you have established a parking ticket or fine whilst parking in Chipping Norton, then we are here to make your life a bit easier.

At the outset there are two different types of parking ticket which are a Penalty Charge Notice or a Parking Charge Notice. It is critical for your wallet that you are transparent about which one you've received. If the ticket is a bureaucratic notice from Chipping Norton council or Chipping Norton police then you have 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 wrongly on public land. Such an offence is backed up by criminal law and you can be fined or end up in court for non-payment of the fines.

If you have received a PCN issued by a council or police force then you ought to refer to the Chipping Norton council or Chipping Norton police for counsel on what to do next. Chipping Norton 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.

Commonly they grant a reduction (how nice of them) if you pay within a set period of time.

The notice should as well include obvious detail of what parking violation you are accused of doing and contain any indication, such as a photograph, which is being relied upon to show you committed the offence. Crucially, the Penalty Charge Notice should also contain 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 uncertainty as to what to do when you get a pcn, it is always a nice idea to get separate advice from the Chipping Norton Citizen's Advice Bureau, or a Chipping Norton lawyer. The Law Society can provide details of a Chipping Norton solicitor.

If you have received 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 union with a landlord to enforce any parking restrictions they choose to place on their property.

A property-owner typically supermarkets, hospitals, retail shopping centres - creates a car park or uses the one already there - they will set out restrictions frequently 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, especially if the notice is clear and prominently displayed and you are consequently entering into a contract with the business running the car park.

More often than not, such restrictions will comprise a set time limit, a prerequisite 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 location, along with information about parking fees and any ensuing charges which could be incurred for failing to comply. If you receive a parking charge notice you should check that these terms are appropriately displayed at the car park in question. If you discover they aren't, you may want to write to the business to appeal the charge.

The major disparity involving an official penalty charge issued by the authorities and a parking charge issued by a private business is that there is nothing in criminal law to support a penalty or fine for parking on private land. For that reason they shouldn't be described as penalties or fines, although many parking operators will label their notices a Parking Charge Notice, which handily also abbreviates to PCN (what a coincidence!).

In issuing a Parking Charge Notice, the parking operator is relying on the law of contract to make an entitlement for compensation. The total 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 should be acceptable and in line with the loss suffered by the business, although excessive charges are common. This isn't 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 believe there has been a misunderstanding and you shouldn't have been issued a ticket, you may want to dispute the charge with the parking company as soon as possible. You should ask them to provide confirmation 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 bear out their argument in court, but it is advisable to seek advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau or a solicitor before things get to this stage. Remember that the parking operator has to corroborate its case on the balance of probabilities.

It is also significant to write down that, as things presently exist, the driver of the vehicle is the only person who can enter into a contract with the landowner. Consequently if you weren't the person driving you may wish to inform the parking company of this straight away. Just because you are the registered keeper of the car, you are under no legal obligation to provide 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 convinced 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 prove its case. However you should let them know that you contest the notice as if not, you can look forward to a sequence 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. Consequently, 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 difficult 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 advise 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 easy to miss when you are busy thinking of all the stuff you want to acquire.