This blog serves to answer the question “How Can I Challenge A Portsmouth City PCN?” A PCN challenge which aims to prove that the traffic contravention did not occur, must contain photographs or video footage relating to the incident. Evidence relating to road journeys in Portsmouth City must be stored on a computer for easy access to support the grounds for your PCN appeals.

How Can I Challenge A Portsmouth City PCN?

You can challenge a Penalty Charge Notice served in Portsmouth City Council by writing a formal representation letter to the council. This letter should preferably contain some photographs (from the scene) of your mitigating circumstances such as a broken down car. 

You can also send in medical certificates to explain the mitigating circumstances which led to your traffic contravention but they should be backed by a reasonable explanation of how you still tried your best to avoid the traffic violation. 

The health problems you were suffering from that day should have been serious enough for you to abandon your vehicle or to make a driving error at a bus lane or no entry sign. Your formal representation must include a proper explanation of how the ailment for instance prevented you from turning your vehicle in the correct direction. 

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” from the Portsmouth City Council, 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 the procedure for appealing against a PCN from Portsmouth City Council?

You can appeal against a PCN from Portsmouth City Council by post. You need to carefully compose a PCN appeal by mentioning the traffic contravention code you have breached and any efforts you made to avoid the mistake.  Each reason in your challenge must be accompanied by verifiable evidence documents, otherwise they will be rejected. Your PCN appeals letter should be addressed to the Portsmouth City Council mentioning your PCN number and vehicle registration number. 

You should compile a PCN challenge by referring to the relevant contravention code and by listing down any mitigating circumstances which influenced your actions. This appeal should not involve reasons which display a lack of urgency or seriousness to avoid the traffic contravention.

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:

Portsmouth City Council,

Civic Offices,

Guildhall Square,

Portsmouth,

P01 2AL,

Hampshire

You can also challenge your Portsmouth City PCN online by clicking here You can login to the PCN appeals portal by entering your PCN number and Vehicle Registration Number. After accessing the system, 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 Portsmouth City Council along with any material evidence.

So you can take 3 to 4 days to recollect 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 Portsmouth City Council website.

You are advised to send in your PCN challenge within 14 days to avail the 50% discount on the fine charges in case your appeal is rejected by the Portsmouth City Council. If you submit your Portsmouth City PCN appeal before the 14th day, you will only have to pay £35 (or £25) if your PCN challenge fails.

If the Portsmouth City 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.

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How can I pay a PCN from Portsmouth City Council ?

You can pay a PCN from Portsmouth City Council in person, through the post (by a cheque or postal order), by telephone or online here

The Portsmouth City Council website provides an electronic payments service for PCN fines. You need to open this webpage and click on “Pay a Penalty Charge Notice online”. Your PCN number has to be entered to initiate the payment process. If you change your mind at this stage and want to challenge the PCN, you can simply click “reset” instead of moving on to the next window.

After clicking on “Continue to Next Stage”, you will be required to enter your Vehicle Registration number. The electronic payments system will then ask you to provide your payment card details. Portsmouth City Council accepts VisaCard, MasterCard, Maestro Card, DeltaCard, Electron Card, and Solo Card.

You can also pay on the Portsmouth City Council’s automated payments hotline by dialling: 0800 876 6576. 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 a * sign. This payment hotline is active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The Portsmouth City Council also accepts PCN fine payments in person. For this purpose you need to visit Portsmouth City Council’s Parking Office to pay your PCN fine in cash. You need to visit between 8:00 am and 4:00pm from Monday to Friday.

The Portsmouth City Council’s Civic Offices are located at this address:

Portsmouth City Council,

Civic Offices,

Guildhall Square,

Portsmouth,

P01 2AL,

Hampshire

Portsmouth  City Council also accepts PCN fine payments by post. You need to send a check or postal order  to “Portsmouth City Council”. You can write down your PCN Number and Vehicle Registration Number on the back of your check or postal order.

Send your PCN fine payment to this address:

Portsmouth City Council,

Civic Offices,

Guildhall Square,

Portsmouth,

P01 2AL,

Hampshire

What is a Penalty Charge Notice?

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

A PCN may be issued by a Civil Enforcement Officer or by CCTV.  You will be given 28 days to respond to a PCN. If you don’t pay the PCN within 28 days you will be issued a charge certificate.

A charge certificate will increase the PCN penalty amount by 50% of its original value.

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

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

The Penalty Charge Notice fine for a Portsmouth City 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 21 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 14 days, you just have to pay £35. The PCN fine for a moving traffic PCN in Portsmouth City Council is £70. There is a 50% discount for paying it within 14 days, which reduces the fine to £35.

What will happen if I don’t pay a PCN from the Portsmouth City Council within the 28-day limit?

If you neither pay nor decide to challenge your PCN from the Portsmouth City Council before the expiration of 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 the recovery of debts against you by the Portsmouth City Council..

So, 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 sanction the use of additional powers (to your council) for recovering the money from your possession. At the end of these 21 days, the council will be allowed to use enforcement agents to recover the unpaid PCN fine amount.

Can I Dispute A PCN from the Portsmouth City Council with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal if the council dismisses my appeal?

Yes, you can dispute the decision of the Portsmouth City 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 Portsmouth City 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 Portsmouth City Council, and your PCN number for which the appeal was rejected.

This challenge to an appeal dismissal by the Portsmouth City Council can only be made online. 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.This challenge should be submitted within 28 days of being sent your “Notice of Rejection”.

Scanned copies of evidence to strengthen your case such as a pay and display ticket, a written statement from an eyewitness 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 Portsmouth City Council in adjudicating your case.

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 Portsmouth City Council.

Conclusion

This blog post addressed the question “How Can I Challenge a Portsmouth City PCN?” Entering mitigating circumstances in your PCN challenge can account for some of your mistakes leading to a traffic violation, but you should ensure that you don’t end up mentioning them each time you get a PCN in Portsmouth City Council. A formal representation must include knowledge of the relevant traffic contravention code applied at the road junction, bus lane or parking zone where the PCN was served.