Excess Charge Notices (Parking Fines)
Babergh District Council car parks are regulated by off-street parking place orders created under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984. These regulations are enforced to ensure fair and safe use of our car parks and are not enforced as a means of generating income for the council.
Where an offence is observed in a car park in contravention of an order covering that car park, our car park wardens are authorised and instructed to issue fines called Excess Charge Notices (ECNs).
Offences are detailed on signage in the car parks and within the off-street parking place orders.
ECNs are typically issued for the following offences or similar:
- No valid ticket
- Expired ticket
- Out of date permit
- Using a permit allocated to another vehicle
- Non-display of Blue Badge in a disabled bay
- Returning within four hours
ECNs can also be issued for other offences, such as parking outside of the markings of a bay or driving against the directional markings and signs, but these are often considered as minor offences and wardens may issue a warning as an alternative. ECNs will be issued to persistent offenders or where the offence warrants more than a warning.
There may be occasions where an ECN has been issued incorrectly or there are circumstances associated with the issuing of an ECN that were not apparent at the time it was issued. For these reasons, ECNs can be challenged by appeal within seven calendar days after they were issued. Our car park wardens can not cancel an ECN once it has been issued, so any ECNs queried on site will have to be challenged though the appeal process.
The following are criteria which we would consider to be acceptable reasons for challenging an ECN:
- The ECN was issued incorrectly or in error – e.g. the wrong vehicle registration mark was written on the ECN making it invalid or an ECN was issued when a valid ticket/season ticket permit/Blue Badge was clearly on display
- There was a fault on the part of the council at the time – e.g. there was a known fault with the ticket machines at the time
- Proven medical or exceptional circumstances – e.g. the driver of the vehicle was rushed to hospital or their vehicle was immobilised
If an appeal is successful, then the ECN will be withdrawn and the case closed.
For more information on appeals, including how to appeal, click here.
Payment of ECNs
Payments of ECNs must be made within 28 days of issue. The charge is £55, however this is reduced to £25 if paid within 14 days of issue. Payment can be made by the following means:
- Online (debit or credit card)
- By Telephone (debit or credit card)
- By Post (cheque or postal order)
- In Person (cash)
If payment is not received, then reminders will be sent to the registered keeper at the time of the offence and ultimately the case may be heard in court.
For more information about payments, including how to pay online, click here.