Parking fines - why it pays to appeal

Read our report based on a study (desk research) of the 2012 figures reported by PATAS, Traffic Penalty Tribunal and the London Council in their annual reporting about parking

Findings show that 8,461,916 parking tickets issued in England and Wales in 2012. Of these, 69,921 were appealed and a staggering 35,816 were upheld – that is almost 1 in 2, so it pays to appeal a parking fine if you think it has been awarded unfairly.

• In the City of London (Square Mile) for example, there were 60,256 parking tickets issued in 2012. Of these, just 1590 were appealed and only 19 were still made to pay. A staggering 99% of people who appealed were let off. So’s message is ‘it pays to appeal’!

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• Resolver’s research also reveals top ten areas where people have been successful in appealing charges (see fig 1, below). It clearly shows that in most cases nearly half of the people who appealed did not have to pay the charge. In some areas as much as 60% of appeals were upheld.

Westminster 8694 480,820 5193 60%
Newham 3783 203,096 2047 54%
Transport for London 3679 326,261 1758 48%
Camden 3312 265,709 1402 42%
Ealing 2568 151,900 1322 51%
Tower Hamlets 2214 105,734 1295 58%
Lambeth 2168 145,097 1303 60%
Hounslow 2162 131,629 1125 52%
Haringey 2007 169,208 918 46%
Waltham Forest 1785 97,492 748 42%
Redbridge 1743 103,831 1059 61%
City of London 1590 60,256 1647 104%

• The study shows a staggering difference between those councils who aggressively hand out tickets to bump up revenues and those who don’t. Westminster Council, for example, issues one ticket every minute, while the likes of South and North Derbyshire District Council are only handing out, on average, one ticket a day. At £60 per parking ticket this amounts to a £28m cash cow for Westminster Council.

Westminster 1317 55
Transport for London 894 37
Camden 728 30
Newham 556 23
Ealing 416 17
Haringey 464 19
Lambeth 398 17
Hounslow 361 15
Kensington & Chelsea 492 21
Waltham Forest 267 11

• The study also highlighted the fact that people in some parts of the country simply don’t appeal parking fines. In London, appeals run into thousands, literally a handful of people appealed charges in Rossendale, Warwickshire, Derbyshire, Norfolk and Nuneaton. The study shows those parts of the Country where people are the laziest in appealing a parking fine. It clearly shows that despite a number of tickets issued, motorists are just accepting the charge. Looking at appeals in other areas, suggests it pays to appeal (Fig 3).

Breckland District Council 1 514 1
Hyndburn 1 51 0
Rossendale 1 - 1
Buckinghamshire - 7930 0
Great Yarmouth - 7224 0
Uttlesford - 4540 0
South Norforlk - 1340 0
Merthyr Tydfil - 987 0
Nuneaton & Bedworth - 925 0
Broadland  - 63 0

• The Study showed where outside of London the most parking tickets were issued were (Fig 4). Again, in most cases nearly half of the people who appealed against their parking offence did not have to pay the bill.

Manchester 925 137,430 0.67% 477
Croydon 883 102,099 0.86% 266
Birmingham 720 133,895 0.54% 339
Enfield 459 82,368 0.56% 133
Havering 679 47,001 0.44% 354
Brighton & Hove 646 116,097 0.56% 338
Leeds 163 106,799 0.15% 78
Bristol 297 77,094 0.39% 162
Liverpool 324 74,717 0.43% 121
Newcastle upon Tyne 320 68,246 0.47% 123
Cardiff 292 68,116 0.43% 97
Nottingham 364 62,101 0.59% 157
Sheffield 282 61,788 0.46% 154

James Walker, the founder of commented, “our study shows that it pays to complain and appeal about a parking ticket if you feel it has been awarded unfairly. It also highlights the aggressive tactics of some councils to simply use parking charges to bump revenues in a complete disregard for motorists’ rights. Our advice is to use our app to complain as soon as you get a ticket – especially if you feel you are in the right! It won’t cost you a penny and with our service we record all the communication in a case file and even escalate the case to the Parking Adjudicator if necessary.

“In our view, by appealing you are helping the councils to improve the fairness of the system and to stamp out any rogue parking attendants who are just looking to improve their numbers.”

See the Auto Express coverage of this story here

Read the Complaining Cow experience on parking tickets

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