This blog serves to answer the question “How Can I Challenge A Folkestone and Hythe PCN?” The blog emphasises that formulating a successful PCN challenge requires time, effort and preparation which pays off if you win your case. You can also further dispute your Notice of Rejection from the Folkestone and Hythe Council with the independent and expert adjudicators at the Traffic Penalty Tribunal if the council rejects your appeal.

How Can I Challenge A Folkestone and Hythe PCN?

Your Folkestone and Hythe PCN challenge can be sent by post by composing an appeals letter by clearly mentioning your mitigating circumstances which affected your driving abilities that day or by asserting that the traffic contravention never happened with photographs of your vehicle moving (or parked) correctly. These photographs should have a date stamp matching the time of your PCN traffic violation and should not be blurry or obscured.

 In order to successfully challenge a PCN from Folkestone and Hythe Council, you should maintain a record of your road presence in the council by requesting a passenger in your vehicle to take photographs or to capture your journey on a digital camera. Attention to detail in these evidence videos or still photographs can enable you to prove that you had parked a few inches away from a yellow line or had stopped your vehicle just outside a box junction.

You can also register your PCN challenge on the Folkestone and Hythe District Council website. The contents of your appeal should be composed offline in Microsoft Word (or any other word processing software) and evidence documents related to the challenge should be stored in a separate folder on your desktop. This data can later be transferred to the online formal representation form.

Your Folkestone and Hythe PCN appeal should not involve reasons which display a lack of urgency or seriousness to avoid the traffic contravention. If you want to avoid mistakes in your formal representation, you should save a list of the traffic contravention codes in the council classified by their location. This can be used to avoid the embarrassment of mentioning false grounds for your appeal. 

In many cases, PCNs are not enforceable and you may be able to win your case and avoid having to pay your fine.

You could begin the process by speaking to an online solicitor for as little as £5. 

What is a Penalty Charge Notice?

A Penalty Charge Notice is a fine or monetary penalty for driving offences. A PCN can be issued for any legal traffic contravention, such as a parking contravention, moving traffic contravention or bus lane violation.

The charges of your PCN will also vary depending on whether it has been issued for a higher level violation or for a lower level violation. A PCN may also be served for refusing to pay road charges.

A PCN may be issued by a Civil Enforcement Officer or by CCTV. You will be given 28 days to respond to a Penalty Charge Notice.

 If you fail to pay the fine or appeal it, you will be sent a charge certificate which increases the PCN fine by 50% of its original value.

On what grounds can I challenge my Folkestone and Hythe Bus Lane CCTV PCN?

You can challenge your Folkestone and Hythe Bus Lane CCTV PCN on the following grounds:

  • You did not enter a bus lane during operational hours and the CCTV has wrongly charged you with a PCN as you were just trying to access premises next to the bus lane
  • You did not ignore or disregard a “no entry” sign for a bus lane.
  • Your vehicle was not left parked in a bus lane during its operational hours. This could be because you are no longer the owner of a vehicle and have recently sold it to someone else.

What is the procedure for appealing against a PCN from the Folkestone and Hythe District Council?

You can appeal against a PCN from the Folkestone and Hythe District Council by writing a formal representation letter.  The informal challenge stage only applies to Parking PCN served by a CEO or to  a CCTV Bus Lane PCN.You can write a PCN appeal to the council mentioning your PCN number and vehicle registration number. 

In this letter you can  include the text of the sections of the Traffic Management Act 2004 or the Road Traffic Act 1984 relating to your case.The PCN appeal should also be signed and dated by you on the last page. This letter along with any documents, pay or display tickets or photographs attached as proof needs to be sent to:

Civic Centre,

Castle Hill Avenue,

Folkestone,

Kent CT20 2QY

You can also challenge your Folkestone and Hythe PCN online by clicking here. On this webpage you need to click on “Challenge Your Parking ticket” to start your PCN appeal. When the next window opens, you can enter your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number and click “Search” to view your PCN details.

You can view CCTV camera footage of your traffic contravention before constructing your PCN appeal.The reasons for you disputing the PCN must be listed down on paper first and explained using the wording of relevant traffic regulations. These reasons need to be formally compiled into an appeals letter to be submitted to the Folkestone and Hythe District Council along with any material evidence.

So you can take 3 to 4 days for recollecting your thoughts about the traffic violation incident and even check your vehicle to recall the position in which it was parked that day. Evidence including photos and videos can be attached online using the Folkestone and Hythe District Council website

You have to make the challenge to your PCN within 28 days of receiving the Penalty Charge Notice.

If the Folkestone and Hythe District Council accepts your PCN appeal, the PCN will be annulled and you will not be liable for paying any monetary penalty. In case the council sends you a “Notice of Rejection” by disapproving of your representation you will have to pay the amount mentioned on your PCN.

How much is the PCN fine for each of the 3 kinds of PCNs served in Folkestone and Hythe District Council?

The 3 kinds of PCNs served in Folkestone and Hythe District Council are a Parking PCN, a Bus Lane PCN and a Moving Traffic PCN. 

The Penalty Charge Notice fine for a Folkestone and Hythe Parking PCN is set at £70 for a higher level traffic violation and £50 for a lower level traffic violation. A 50% discount applies to early payment so If you pay your higher level parking PCN within 14 days, you just have to pay £35. Similarly, if you pay your lower level parking PCN within 14 days, you just have to pay just £25.

If you pay a Bus Lane PCN within 28 days, you will be charged £70 and if you pay it within 21 days, you just have to pay £35. The PCN fine for a moving traffic PCN in Folkestone and Hythe District Council is £70. There is a 50% discount for paying it within 14 days, which reduces the fine to £35.

How can I pay a Folkestone and Hythe PCN fine?

You should be aware of the fact that you can only pay your Folkestone and Hythe PCN fine online. The PCN fine can be paid online on the Folkestone and Hythe District Council’s official website (using Visa Card, Master Card, Direct Debit or Maestro Card) This payment method saves time and is also more precise. 

If you were looking for a postal order payment option or a choice for paying your PCN fine via the council’s telephone hotline, you might be disappointed to learn that these options are unavailable in Folkestone and Hythe District Council. 

You need to enter your PCN number on this webpage and then click on “Lookup” Once you view your PCN details, you can pay the PCN fine. To complete your fine submission online you also have to enter your vehicle registration number and payment card details in the next window. You must remember to wait for 24 hours after your PCN is issued before attempting to pay it.

You must pay your PCN fine within 28 days. You should pay before 14 days if you don’t want to miss out on the 50% early payment discount (which reduces Parking PCNs to £35 or £25, Bus Lane and Moving Traffic PCNs to £35) 

What will happen if I don’t pay my Folkestone and Hythe PCN within the 28-day limit?

If you fail to pay your Folkestone and Hythe PCN within the 28-day limit you will be sent a charge certificate from the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. The charge certificate increases your PCN fine by 50%. You should pay the charge certificate within 14 days as it cannot be appealed and ignoring the charge certificate may result in the filing of a court order (for recovery of debts) against you by the Folkestone and Hythe District Council.

When the charge certificate is also not paid within 14 days, you will receive a “Notice of Debt Registration” and a witness certificate from the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. The unpaid amount will be treated as a debt with the Traffic Enforcement Centre at the Northampton County Court.

The court order for debt recovery enforces that the charge certificate amount must be paid in full within 21 days or it will have to use additional powers to recover the money from your possession.

Can I Dispute A PCN from the Folkestone and Hythe District Council with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal if the council dismisses my appeal?

Yes, you can dispute the decision of the Folkestone and Hythe District Council in your “Notice of Rejection of Representations” with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. For this, you can use the Traffic Penalty Tribunal’s website by clicking this link 

You can watch this instructional video here to learn about your challenge process. It clearly explains how to use the online service offered by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. On the Traffic Penalty Tribunal webpage, you will first have to select the type of PCN you were served by the Folkestone and Hythe Council(shown on the bottom part of the page) .

You will then be required to enter your Vehicle Registration Number, the reference number from the “Notice of Rejection” letter from the Folkestone and Hythe District Council, and your PCN number for which the appeal was rejected.

You can use the online service to challenge multiple “Notices of Rejection” simultaneously. You will require a valid email address to create an account on the Traffic Penalty Tribunal website. You have to attach a copy of your “Notice of Rejection of Representations” letter to your application by using the Traffic Penalty Tribunal’s online portal.

Scanned copies of evidence to strengthen your case such as a pay and display ticket or photographs of the scene can be added along with your explanation. The explanation of your case should be well worded and convince the tribunal of an error on the part of the Folkestone and Hythe District Council in adjudicating your case.

Your appeal of the “Notice of Rejection of Representations” should be submitted to the Traffic Penalty Tribunal within 28 days of receiving your Notification of Rejection from Folkestone and Hythe District Council.

You will be able to contact the Traffic Penalty Tribunal adjudicator during the registration of your appeal. The result of your appeal will be communicated to you within 14-28 days of submission. If the adjudicator decides the case in your favour, the PCN will be cancelled by the Folkestone and Hythe District Council.

Conclusion

This blog post addressed the question “How Can I Challenge A Folkestone and Hythe PCN?” You can prepare for writing a PCN appeal by memorising the contravention codes enforced in restricted parking zones and along road junctions in Folkestone and Hythe District Council by matching them with their location. The reasons for challenging your PCN must be supported by photo or video evidence presenting your point of view of the traffic violation and clearly showing how the contravention never occurred or showcasing the evasive actions you had taken to try to avoid it

Citations

Folkestone and Hythe website.

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