Selkirk Parking

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Selkirk Parking

Selkirk parking in Selkirkshire is getting more testing by the day. There look to be additional yellow lines, extra traffic wardens, with a reduction of free car parking and even supermarkets are now charging for you to park and shop with them...where will it all end?

Confidently we can assist you with your parking in Selkirk. If you have received a parking ticket or fine whilst parking in Selkirk, then we are here to assist.

To begin with there are 2 discrete 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 notice you've received. If the ticket is a formal notice from Selkirk council or Selkirk 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 municipal 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 PCN issued by a council or police force then you ought to refer to the Selkirk council or Selkirk police for opinion on what to do after that. Selkirk council will have meticulous information on their website outlining how long you have got to pay the fine, how to pay the fine and the penalties implicated if you fail to pay within the time frame.

By and large they give a reduction (how nice of them) if you pay within a set period of time.

The PCN should also include comprehensible detail of what parking violation you are accused of committing and contain any indication, such as a photograph, which is being relied upon to corroborate you committed the offence. Significantly, the Penalty Charge Notice ought to in addition include clear instructions of what to do if you want to dispute the penalty, along with details of the appeals system 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 safe idea to seek separate guidance from the Selkirk Citizen's Advice Bureau, or a Selkirk lawyer. The Law Society can provide details of a Selkirk solicitor.

If you have received a Parking Charge Notice then you have received this from a private parking company. A private parking company is an organisation which has entered into an agreement with a landlord to enforce any parking restrictions he or she chooses to place on their terrain.

A landlord typically supermarkets, hospitals, retail shopping centres - creates a car park or uses the existing one - they will set out restrictions ordinarily in a notification displayed on the land which you agree to abide by when you park on that land. 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 deal with the business running the car park.

More often than not, such restrictions will involve a set time limit, a requirement 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 other points across the location, along with information about parking charges and any subsequent charges which could be incurred for failing to comply. If you be given a parking charge notice you should check that these terms are accurately displayed at the car park in question. If you find they are not, you may desire to write to the company to appeal the charge.

The chief disparity involving 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. Hence they shouldn't be described as penalties or fines, even though lots of 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 damages. The amount they ask for is to compensate for you breaching the contract you formed when you parked on the property in question. According to the CAB, this cost should be reasonable and in line with the loss suffered by the business, although extreme 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 sense there has been a blunder 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 give 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 confirm their argument in court, but it is advisable to seek advice from the CAB or a solicitor before things get to this point. Take into account that the parking operator has to prove its case on the balance of probabilities.

It is also of great consequence to note that, as things currently stand, the driver of the vehicle is the only person who can enter into a contract with the landowner. So 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 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 convinced 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 verify its case. However you should let them know that you contest the notice as if not, you can anticipate 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. 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 reasonable.

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 straightforward to miss when you are busy thinking of all the stuff you want to acquire.