Three in five car parking ticket appeals won

Research by consumer champion Which? shows it may pay to appeal your parking ticket, with more than half of people appealing tickets successfully.

A survey of 1,000 car owners, who’d had at least one parking ticket in the past year, revealed nearly three in five (57%) who appealed won their case.

Despite tickets sometimes hitting drivers with fines of up to £150, fewer than half of people surveyed (41%) appealed, and almost one in four (22%) did not know they could challenge a parking ticket.

Different rules govern a penalty charge notice (PCN) issued by a local council and a ticket issued by a private company. Councils are legally obliged to provide information to consumers on how to appeal a PCN. Private companies must belong to an accredited trade association to legally issue a parking ticket.

Many who did not appeal said it was because they felt the fine was fair and they were in the wrong. The research showed one person decided not to appeal because it was “cheaper and easier to pay the fine, rather than wrangle and lose”.

Which? has developed a new and free-to-use appeal letter generator to help motorists contest a parking ticket where they feel it has been issued unfairly. The tool is is available on the Which? website

Alex Neill, Which? Managing Director of Home Products and Services, said:

“If you think you have been issued a parking ticket unfairly, our advice is to challenge it.

“Our research shows it pays to appeal, with hundreds of consumers successfully overturning parking fines and saving themselves money in the process.”


Notes to editors

  • 1,000 motorists who had been issued with a ticket in the past 12 months were surveyed between 22 June and 15 July 2017.

  • Almost two in three of the fines (61%) were issued by a local council, compared with a third (36%) by a private company.

  • The research  shows people are more likely to appeal against a ticket issued by a private company, with half of tickets appealed (50%), compared with just over a third (37%) for local councils.

  • The success rates for appeals are broadly similar, with 60% for council tickets compared to a 54% success rate for private companies.

  • Private companies must belong to either The British Parking Association or the International Parking Community, in order to issue a ticket and access DVLA records. If they are not then they can not access the vehicle owner’s details and any charge will be unenforceable.  They are also obliged to have an appeals process in place.

Press Release