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How Long can a PCN be Issued After the Offence? 2022 Laws

HomeCouncil FinesHow Long can a PCN be Issued After the Offence? 2022 Laws
Penalty Charge Notice Fines

How long can a PCN be issued after the offence? If you think you are going to receive a PCN in the post, you’ll want to hear this. It’s possible for you to appeal against a PCN if it is not served in good time – but what is the Penalty Charge Notice time limit? 

Do You Have to Pay?

In many circumstances, parking tickets are not enforceable.

It’s a bit sneaky, but last time I had a parking fine, I paid £5 for a trial to chat with an online solicitor.

Not only did I save £50 on solicitor fees, I also won my case and didn’t have to pay my £271 fine.

You can try it out now, just remember to cancel the trial once you’ve got your answer.

What is a Penalty Charge Notice?

Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) are fines issued by the local council or London for Transport. The former issues these fines for illegal parking and minor traffic offences, such as turning right when not allowed or using a bus lane at times when not permitted. London for Transport issues PCNs for not paying road tolls on time, such as the London Congestion Charge. 

How long does a penalty charge notice take to arrive?

A Penalty Charge Notice could be left on your vehicle or handed to you by a parking warden, meaning you are served the PCN instantly. On the other hand, if cameras were used to spot your traffic offence, the PCN will usually arrive within four weeks at most

It can take longer than four weeks if the PCN issuer is having difficulty getting your address from the DVLA. 

How long does a council get to serve a PCN? (Quick answer only)

Your local authority has 28 days to serve you with a Penalty Charge Notice, but this can be extended in certain situations.

Read on to uncover the details about PCN time limits. 

How long can a PCN be pursued?

A PCN can be pursued for many years, but the likelihood of this is low. Most PCNs are successfully pursued within 28 days, or a further 14 days if no payment is received. 

How do you pay a Penalty Charge Notice?

Your Penalty Charge Notice should list all the ways you can pay. The most common method is to pay online if your council allows it. 

To pay for your PCN online, you will need to visit your issuer’s website and enter your vehicle registration number and your PCN number. You can find the latter at the top of your PCN. You can then see your PCN details and make a payment with a bank card. 

If you pay your PCN within the first 14 days, you could get a discount worth up to 50% of the total fine!

Can you appeal a Penalty Charge Notice?

You have the right to lodge an appeal against your PCN as long as you appeal within 28 days of receiving the PCN. Most of the time you will make a formal appeal which is officially called a representation. 

A formal appeal requires you to create a detailed account and reasons why you believe the PCN should be cancelled. For example, you might argue that you shouldn’t be fined for driving in a bus lane because you had moved over momentarily to let an ambulance pass. Your representation should be supported with evidence, which could include photographs or statements. 

You must make an informal appeal first if the PCN was left on your vehicle or it was given to you by a parking warden. If an informal appeal is rejected, you can move on to make a representation. 

Successful representations usually result in the PCN being withdrawn. If your representation is rejected, you have an opportunity to send your appeal to an independent tribunal instead. The tribunal you must use depends on the location of the supposed offence. 

Reasons to appeal a Penalty Charge Notice

There are many possible reasons to appeal a PCN and get your appeal accepted. The most common PCNs issued are for parking offences and some good reasons to appeal include:

  1. Not receiving your PCN in good time
  2. You were in fact parking correctly
  3. You overstayed because you had broken down
  4. An emergency stopped you from getting to your vehicle
  5. The payment machine was out of order

Penalty Charge Notice time limit

The council should send you a Penalty Charge Notice within 28 days of the incident. This time limit is extended if the council needs to request your address from the DVLA and they are slow to respond. They must request your information from the DVLA within 14 days when required. 

If the DVLA are too slow and the PCN cannot be sent within 28 days, the Penalty Charge Notice time limit can be extended by many months. 

Is there a time limit on issuing a private parking ticket?

Private parking tickets usually have to be issued within 14 days of the offence if the motorist was not notified of the offence at the time. If they were given a notice at the time, the company has around two months to send the fine. 

If you were not sent a private parking ticket in good time, you may be able to use this as a reason not to pay. By delaying the fine, they have made it more difficult to make a successful appeal. 

Have another PCN query?

We hope you got the answer to your query in this guide. For more free content on PCNs and even private parking tickets, stick with us. MoneyNerd has scores of articles and discussion posts on these subjects to support motorists across the UK.

Do You Have to Pay?

In many circumstances parking tickets are not enforceable.

It’s a bit sneaky, but last time I had a parking fine, I paid £5 for a trial to chat to an online solicitor.

Not only did I save £50 on solicitor fees, I also won my case and didn’t have to pay my £271 fine.

You can try it out now, just remember to cancel the trial once you’ve got your answer.

GET STARTED

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