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Wrong Registration Number on PCN – 2022 Laws

HomeCouncil FinesWrong Registration Number on PCN – 2022 Laws
Wrong Reg Number on PCN

Wrong registration number on PCN – do you still have to pay? 

You might have received a PCN in your name with a slightly or completely different car registration number. The natural first question to ask is does this mean you don’t have to pay the fine? We answer this and relevant questions below. 

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? 

A Penalty Charge Notice, shortened to PCN, is a fine given to motorists for parking illegally, disobeying road signs (caught on camera), or for not paying a toll road or road fee on time, such as the Dartford Crossing Charge. 

A PCN is handed out by local councils for parking and traffic offences. Transport companies manage PCNs that are issued for missing toll road payments, such as Transport for London. They should not be mixed up with Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs), which are the fines given out by police for serious traffic offences. 

Wrong registration on a PCN – do I have to pay? (Quick answer!)

You still have to pay a PCN if the vehicle registration number on the PCN doesn’t exactly match your vehicle registration. However, if the registration number is nothing like yours, rather than a clerical error, you may want to clarify that the PCN was meant for you. 

Read on for more details. 

Do you have to pay a Penalty Charge Notice?

You must pay a Penalty Charge Notice within 28 days or make an appeal against the PCN. If you plan on paying the fine, you should try to pay within 14 days to get a discount, which could be as much as 50% of the fine. 

If you don’t pay or appeal within the 28 days, you’ll be sent a charge certificate that asks you to pay a new fine that is 50% bigger than the original fine. This will need to be paid within 14 days. 

Ignoring a charge certificate will result in a court order being issued for you to pay the fine. And if you ignore the order of recovery, you could end up facing bailiffs who will come to your home. They’ll demand full payment or attempt to repossess your valuables to clear the debt. 

How do you pay a penalty charge notice?

Most PCN issuers offer a variety of ways to pay their fines, including online via their council or transport website. To make a PCN payment online, you’ll need to enter your vehicle registration number and your PCN reference number. This will identify your PCN and give you an option of making an online payment with a debit or credit card. 

If your PCN number is lost or your details are not working, you should contact the PC issuer for support. Many PCN issuers will only deal with the registered vehicle owner, even if you were the one driving and need to pay the fine. 

How do you appeal a penalty charge notice?

To appeal against a PCN, you will have to make an informal or formal appeal within 28 days of receiving the notice. Informal appeals are only required when the PCN was left on your vehicle or handed to you in the street. If an informal appeal is rejected, you can then make a formal appeal. 

A formal appeal, also known as representation, is when you write to the PCN issuer explaining why you believe the PCN is unfair or not justified. You should back up your claims with evidence, such as photos or witness accounts when possible.

If your representation is rejected, you can take your appeal to an independent tribunal. You’ll have to re-state your case to the tribunal which will then decide in favour of the PCN issuer or yourself. Their decision is final. 

Is a parking ticket legal if it has the wrong registration number on?

A parking ticket is still legal if the recorded registration number doesn’t match your car registration. This question was asked by a Sunday Times reader and answered by a road traffic lawyer

If the registration is nothing like yours, there may have been a real error and you should ask the issuer to investigate further. It could be that you were not the guilty party and the PCN could be wiped. 

I entered the wrong registration number and received a PCN

You may have paid for parking on private land and then returned to your vehicle shocked to see a PCN has been left on your windshield. Or you received it later in the post. This could happen if you had to enter your vehicle registration number when paying. By entering one of the digits incorrectly, your vehicle will not be registered as paid, resulting in a parking officer issuing a PCN. 

The British Parking Association (BPA) has revised its code of practice to account for typing errors like these and prevent PCNs from being issued unfairly. If you enter a wrong digit and receive a PCN, you’ll be able to successfully appeal and have the fine wiped. The issuing body will still be allowed to recover some admin costs. 

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

More discussions about PCNs and your rights!

Know your rights when dealing with or appealing against Penalty Charge Notices. Our team have answered other PCN questions frequently asked by UK motorists. Thanks for checking out this post and read more of our free content soon!

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