This blog serves to answer the question “How Can I Challenge A Guildford PCN?” The grounds for your Guildford PCN challenge should clearly demonstrate why the council should approve your request . Your formal representation should also provide the Guildford Council with specific evidence relating to your actions, from the scene which it had not considered earlier.

How Can I Challenge A Guildford PCN?

You need to study a list of Bus Lane, Moving Traffic and Parking contravention codes enforced in Guildford Borough Council and memorise them by matching each code with the location it is applied to. You also have to create a habit of maintaining a digital record of your road presence in Guildford Borough Council by recording your daily journeys on a camcorder. This evidence is essential to prove to the council that your traffic contravention never occurred as it can clearly show your vehicle successfully avoiding a bus lane ( or no entry zone) or being correctly parked within a parking space.

If you just contest your PCN by suggesting that you did not commit a traffic contravention without attaching any supporting evidence, there is no way for the council to verify your claim. The CCTV footage of your incident is the only available record of the incident and can only be disputed by providing an authentic video of the scene (with a date stamp matching the CCTV evidence) which clearly shows for instance how you tried to apply the brakes to your vehicle on time or to steer it properly in the correct direction.

Mitigating circumstances such as a serious health condition can also be proven by using a video of your journey, which can further be supported by a medical certificate from your doctor. You should be able to prove through the video how your health problem prevented you from operating your vehicle correctly.

It is essential for you to compile a strong appeals case before sending in your challenge so as to avoid being served a “Notice of Rejection of Representations”, which means the council has denied your PCN 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.

What is the procedure for appealing against a PCN from the Guildford Borough Council?

You can appeal against a PCN from the Guildford Borough Council by writing a formal representation letter on your Notice to Owner. 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 as reference. 

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 completed Notice to Owner document, along with any medical certificates, pay or display tickets or photographs attached as proof needs to be sent to:

Parking Services,

Millmead House,

Guildford,

Surrey,

GU2 4BB

You can also challenge your Guildford PCN online by clicking here After opening the page you need to click on “Manage a Penalty Charge Notice”. This will open a new window where you can enter your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number to login to the system. You can view CCTV camera footage of your traffic contravention before constructing your PCN appeal.This payments and appeals service has the same account so you must be careful not to click on the PCN payment option after you log in.

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 Guildford Borough 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 Guildford Borough Council website.

You have to make the challenge to your PCN within 28 days of receiving it.

If the Guildford Borough 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.

What Can I Do If My Vehicle has been towed away?

If your vehicle has been towed away from the Guildford Borough Council you need to call 101 to ask the Surrey Police about the matter. If your vehicle was towed away for violating your driving license rules, you should have received a form 3078 (seizure notice) by post. Your inquiry will be addressed by the Surrey Police staff and in case your vehicle has been towed away you will have to visit the Guildford Police Station to get it released.

Next, you will be required to verify 2 kinds of ID documents such as a passport and a driving licence at the vehicle pound. You could also use 2 other combinations of documents such as your original birth certificate and your vehicle registration certificate. You should also have the insurance certificate for your vehicle and your V5C vehicle registration certificate (with you) unless this has already been used as one of the 2 ID documents.

Vehicles are seized by the Surrey Police under Section 165 A or the Road Traffic Act 1988 due to a violation of your driving license rules. You must remember to visit the vehicle pound within 7 days of the date mentioned on your form 3078. The amount of money you will need to unclamp your vehicle includes a £200 release fee and storage charges of £20 per day. So for example if your vehicle was towed away by a parking company 3 days ago, you will need (£20×3) + £200 = £260 to get it released from the vehicle pound. This vehicle release and storage charges are set under The Road Traffic Act 1998 (Retention and Disposal of Seized Motor Vehicles).

You should pay your Guildford Borough Council Parking PCN online before collecting the vehicle from the pound at the Guildford Police Station. But even if you just have £200 or £260 with you (for leaving your vehicle in the pound for up to 3 days), you can still pay the amount at the vehicle pound and claim your vehicle. It is more important to collect your vehicle from the Guildford Police Station than to pay your PCN fine because storage fees of £20 are being added every day and your vehicle will no longer be in the vehicle pound after 14 days.

As you will have to pay your Parking PCN within 14 days when you are recovering your impounded vehicle, it will cost you only £35. Your vehicle pound charges can vary so it is best to get it removed from there as soon as possible. For each week your vehicle is left in the pound you will have to pay £140 extra storage charges.

Once you contact the Surrey Police by dialling 101 and tell them your vehicle registration number you will be guided to the Guildford Police Station for recovering your impounded vehicle.

You will have to make the payment to release your vehicle from the Guildford Police Station by visiting the location in person with at least £200 in cash or available as credit on your payment card. The Surrey Police accepts Visa Card, Master Card, Maestro Card, and Solo Card for the payment of vehicle release and storage charges.

Guildford Police Station is located at this address :

Margaret Road,

Guildford

Surrey,

GU1 4QS

You can visit the Guildford Police Station at any time between 8:00 am and 10:00 pm from Monday to Friday. Staff from the Surrey Police will be available at the pound to address your queries and for receiving the vehicle release charges. You must remember to be courteous to the police officers at the Guildford Police Station, as your vehicle might be freed in a period of upto 2 or 3 hours.

You should have the 2 ID Documents, a copy of form 3078, your vehicle’s MOT certificate, and your vehicle registration certificate (if this is not your ID document). After all these documents have been verified by the Surrey Police staff, your vehicle seizure notice will be stamped to authorise the release of the vehicle.

You need to visit the vehicle pound with a cash payment or payment card for payment of vehicle release charges and any vehicle storage expenses (incurred by the vehicle pound). Next, you need to pay the required charges at the Guildford Police Station and your vehicle is free. You must remember to recover your vehicle within 7 days from the vehicle pound. If you leave it there for more than 14 days the car might be scrapped or sold by the Surrey Police.

How much is the PCN fine for each of the 3 kinds of PCNs served in Guildford Borough Council?

The 3 kinds of PCNs served in Guildford Borough Council are a Parking PCN, a Bus Lane PCN and a Moving Traffic PCN. 

The Penalty Charge Notice fine for a Guildford 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 Guildford Borough 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 PCN in Guildford Borough Council?

You can pay a PCN in Guildford Borough Council by telephone, or online here.

The Guildford Borough Council website has a system for viewing your PCN details before paying the PCN. You need to open this webpage to access the Penalty Charge Notice payments system. After opening the page, you should click on “Pay A Parking fine” This will open a new window or tab where you can enter your PCN number and vehicle registration number to initiate the payment process.

In the next window, you will be required to provide your payment card details. Guildford Borough Council accepts VisaCard, MasterCard, Maestro Card, DeltaCard and Electron Card for PCN payments.

You can also pay on the Guildford Borough Council’s automated payments hotline by dialling: 03300 889 584. Next, you will be required to provide your payment card details, PCN Number, and vehicle registration number. You can enter your PCN number by replacing the letters with the * key. This payment hotline is active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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

If you fail to pay your Guildford 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 Guildford Borough 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 Guildford Borough Council with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal if the council dismisses my appeal?

Yes, you can dispute the decision of the Guildford Borough 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 Guildford Borough 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 Guildford Borough 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 Guildford Borough 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 the Guildford Borough 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 Guildford Borough Council.

Conclusion

This blog post addressed the question “How Can I Challenge A Guildford PCN?” You may choose to challenge your Guildford PCN online or by post, after evaluating the effectiveness of both methods to present your case to the Guildford Council. The text of your appeal should also demonstrate a prior awareness of the relevant traffic contravention being enforced at the location and must not contain any reasons involving forgetfullness or lack of concentration.

Citations

Surrey Police Seized Vehicles

Road Traffic Act 1988 (Retention and Disposal of Seized Motor Vehicles)

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