Friday, 25 December 2015

London Tribunals - September 2015

The month of September at London Tribunals (formerly PATAS) was quiet with 105 Barnet cases considered. Two were the subject of recommendations by the adjudicator to the council to cancel but we don't know the outcome as the on-line register isn't telling us.

On 50 occasions the motorist won and on 53 they lost. This is a fairly typical outcome.

The notable cases are these, all of which led to the PCN being cancelled with the decision of adjudicators in blue type:

Bus Lane PCN not received.

The appellant has claimed from the outset of these proceedings that the PCN was not received.

Although the council states in its case summary that its records confirm that the PCN was posted (on 12 May 2015) it provides no proof of posting: although its Ticket History document states 'PCN produced' on 12 May that is not evidence that it was posted.

I am not satisfied having regard to the tone, content and consistency of the appellant's submissions on the point that the PCN was received and thus served and find that the presumption as to service of that document has been rebutted in this case. A failure to serve a PCN means that no power then arises to issue an Enforcement Notice.

Regulation 10 PCN - one sent by post.

The notes made by the traffic warden were not good enough to justify the reason for a postal PCN i.e. why didn't they stick it to the windscreen or put it in the hand of the person in charge of the vehicle?

Pavement parking in St Margarets Avenue (pavement parking is changing so be careful, try and be in a marked by if you can)

The appellant appeared before me today accompanied by the driver.

I found them both to be credible witnesses.

They did not deny that this vehicle had been parked otherwise than on the carriageway but stated that they were visiting a friend who lived on this road they doing so on a regular basis they usually parking off the carriageway when doing so without incident this being what all other motorists did when parking on this road given its narrow width they accepting that the vehicle had not been parked within a footway parking bay marked by signage and lines they however pointing out that the section of footway within which the vehicle had been parked was paved differently to the rest of the footway suggesting that motorists could park on it.

I was satisfied on the appellant's case she and the driver confirming that when parking as they did on this occasion on numerous previous occasions the vehicle had not been ticketed that the appellant and the driver had due I found to a lack of enforcement on this street a legitimate expectation that if this vehicle was parked as it was it would not incur a penalty charge and I found for that reason that the contravention had not been proved.

Moxon St Car Park - One Hour free

Mr X submitted that the contravention as alleged in the PCN for "parking without payment of a charge " did not occur as the location permitted one hours free parking subject to displaying a free ticket. Unfortunately the Appellant only read that free parking was permitted for an hour and did not read the fine print requiring the display of a ticket. Mr X therefore submits that the correct contravention would have been for failing to display a valid ticket.

I agree with Mr X and am not satisfied that the contravention as alleged in the PCN did occur. I therefore allow this appeal.

Regulation 10 PCN - one sent by post

In this case the driver walked away and left his vehicle parked. Therefore, the traffic warden could have served the PCN on the car but didn't, it was sent by post instead. the right to do so has not arisen as there was no prevention of service by force or by driving away.

Regulation 10 PCN - one sent by post

In this case the PCN was sent more than 28 days after the alleged contravention date. This is not permitted (if a lease car is involved the time period will be extended).

You may have resprayed your car to avoid a PCN!

The Appellant denies that it his vehicle that that is the subject matter of the contravention but believes it to be a different vehicle with the same licence plate. His vehicle was a deep shade of blue in colour. The vehicle seen in the photograph taken by the CEO and recorded in his notes is white in colour.

The Appellant had previously submitted a copy of his log book and two police receipts where the police had actually seen and checked his vehicle, as well as a copy of his MOT all of which record his vehicle as being blue.

He has received several PCNs all of which were cancelled on the same grounds and the same evidence submitted by the Appellant so the appellant was rather dismayed to see that the local authority refused to cancel this PCN as they stated that the colour of the vehicle may have been subsequently changed.

I have looked at the photographic evidence taken by the CEO which clearly shows a white vehicle. I am satisfied from the Appellants evidence that his vehicle was blue. The Appellant has since sold the vehicle because of the difficulties he was having with the other vehicle.

I note that the CEO has recorded the tax details and the local authority could clearly have simply asked the Appellant to have produced his tax disc at the time to establish whether or not it was the Appellant's vehicle if they had any doubts about the recording of the colour. However now that the vehicle has been sold the appellant can no longer produce his tax disc in place on the date of the contravention.

I am nevertheless satisfied from the Appellants evidence that it was not his vehicle that has been recorded by the CEO and the subject matter of the contravention and therefore allow this appeal.

This last case evidences an inbuilt lack of trust by the parking department (and NSL) of motorists. The notion that you would respray your car at a cost of several hundred pounds in order to avoid a PCN for £60 or £110 is risible.

Keep those Appeals coming. You can see that it is worth it a lot of the time and ocne you have missed the discount period it is a no-brainer to fight to the end.

Yours appealingly

Miss Feezance.