Letter to the Editor: Council have us over barrel when it comes to parking appeals

By Lee Smith, via email

I am writing in shock that the council upheld the fine against Mrs King and continues to do so.

She did everything correctly. She bought a £10 ticket and displayed it in her car, upon leaving the car the ticket was visible.

It is absolutely not her fault that the quality of the ticket paper is not good enough to withstand rain followed by hot temperatures.

When she produced the ticket during the appeal process, the fine should have been cancelled immediately. 

Instead the council have abused their power and simply upheld it.

In your article, Mrs King considered if it was worth challenging the council further rather than paying, and in fact she surely would have won in front of an independent adjudicator.

But the council have us ordinary folk over a barrel when taking it further: If you do lose, you have to pay the full amount of £120 rather than the lower 'pay in 14 days' £60 arrangement.

This is entirely unfair and puts me and others off from appealing further, when in fact we may have a very good case, as Mrs King certainly did.

The only fair thing to do now would be to admit their mistake and refund Mrs King. 


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Comments (3)

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5:07pm Thu 26 Jul 12

robmorleyuk says...

There is an appeals authority PATAS who are not the council and are independent and fair. They are specific to London penalty charges, publish advice and are a free service. Among the information they publish is a wekkly list of cases before them - the current list shows 390 cases of which only one comes from Merton. At a glance it seems the rest of the capital is making use of this but we in Merton may be proving a little shy.
There is an appeals authority PATAS who are not the council and are independent and fair. They are specific to London penalty charges, publish advice and are a free service. Among the information they publish is a wekkly list of cases before them - the current list shows 390 cases of which only one comes from Merton. At a glance it seems the rest of the capital is making use of this but we in Merton may be proving a little shy. robmorleyuk
  • Score: 0

9:11pm Thu 26 Jul 12

Tobermory says...

She would probably not have won at PATAS as the penalty was for not clearly displaying a valid ticket, not for not buying one. I commute by train and know if I leave my season ticket at home I will get a penalty fare, just because I pay £100 doesn't mean I am exempt from the regulations, neither is Mrs King
She would probably not have won at PATAS as the penalty was for not clearly displaying a valid ticket, not for not buying one. I commute by train and know if I leave my season ticket at home I will get a penalty fare, just because I pay £100 doesn't mean I am exempt from the regulations, neither is Mrs King Tobermory
  • Score: 0

11:30pm Thu 26 Jul 12

robmorleyuk says...

Tobermory: I believe the challenge is that she did display a valid ticket but the low grade paper curled due to contact with rainwater. The grade of paper is not her responsibility so there could be a reasonable objection, that’s what PATAS figures out.
I’m not sure why you would want Mrs King and other Mertonites not to use such a service, if you had your season ticket with you but it was soaked in rainwater and the ticket inspector refused to accept it would you still expect or accept a fine?
Tobermory: I believe the challenge is that she did display a valid ticket but the low grade paper curled due to contact with rainwater. The grade of paper is not her responsibility so there could be a reasonable objection, that’s what PATAS figures out. I’m not sure why you would want Mrs King and other Mertonites not to use such a service, if you had your season ticket with you but it was soaked in rainwater and the ticket inspector refused to accept it would you still expect or accept a fine? robmorleyuk
  • Score: 0

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