Tipton Parking

Church | Schools

Tipton Parking

Tipton parking in West Midlands is getting more difficult by the day. There appear to be further double yellow lines, added traffic wardens, a reduced amount of free car parking and even supermarkets are now charging for you to park and shop with them...where will it all end?

With a bit of luck we can help you with your parking in Tipton. If you have received a parking ticket or fine at the same time as parking in Tipton, then we are here to assist.

To start with there are 2 various types of parking ticket which are a Penalty Charge Notice and a Parking Charge Notice. It is critical for your wallet that you are clear about which notice you have received. If the ticket is a legitimate notice from Tipton council or Tipton police then you have been issued a PENALTY CHARGE NOTICE (PCN). Only the 2 bodies 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 Penalty Charge Notice issued by a council or police force then you should refer to the Tipton council or Tipton police for information on what to do next. Tipton 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 implicated if you fail to pay within the time frame.

Customarily they give a discount (how nice of them) if you pay within a set period of time.

The notice must in addition contain unmistakable detail of what parking violation you are accused of doing and include any facts, such as a video, which is being relied upon to establish you committed the offence. Importantly, the notice should in addition include clear instructions of what to do if you want to dispute the fine, along with details of the appeals method and the timescales involved.

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

If you have received a Parking Charge Notice then you have received this from a private parking business. A private parking business is an organisation which has entered into an understanding with a landowner 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 existing one - they will set out restrictions commonly in a notification 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 therefore entering into a contract with the business running the car park.

More often than not, such restrictions will comprise a set time limit, a requirement to pay and display or a no-return policy. The T&C's of the car park should be displayed plainly and concisely on signs as you enter the car park and at other points across the site, along with information about parking charges and any subsequent charges which could be incurred for failing to comply. If you obtain a parking charge notice you ought to check that these terms are correctly displayed at the car park in question. If you discover they aren't, you may wish to write to the business to appeal the charge.

The chief divergence involving an official penalty charge issued by the authorities and a parking charge issued by a private company is that there is naught in criminal law to support a penalty or fine for parking on private land. Consequently they should not be described as penalties or fines, although scores 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 an entitlement for costs. 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 Citizen's Advice Bureau, this charge ought to be affordable and in line with the loss suffered by the company, even though 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 salvage a parking charge from you without first taking you to court, so if you think 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 proof 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 bear out their case 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 worthy to write down that, as things currently exist, the driver of the vehicle is the solitary person who can enter into a contract with the landlord. Therefore 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 impart 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 confident 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 bear out its case. However you should let them know that you contest the notice as if not, you can look forward to a series 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. 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 is going to be very difficult for these companies to show 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 get in touch with 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 things you want to buy.