BRITAIN'S premier parking ticket expert has shared his top tips for what to do when you get slapped with a pesky fine.
Barrie Segal has saved the skin of over 60,000 Brits with his knowledge of how to overturn the UK's most dreaded ticket.
The veteran with twenty years' experience overturning the little yellow hell raisers shared his top five tips – handily coined SEGAL – with The Sun, to keep you from parting with your hard earned cash.
Barrie said that it may seem obvious, but staying calm "is a big deal" when you discover you've been snared.
He explained: "I have done radio phone ins when people get caught out – I ask did you check your vehicle number is right.
"They reply 'oh no I was so annoyed I threw it away'."
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Staying calm is absolutely paramount when dealing with a ticket as it will prevent you from saying anything regrettable or getting rid of crucial evidence which could help in an appeal.
This is especially important if you come into contact with enforcement officers, Barrie added.
He said: "Make a note of what you said and try and make sure they are making a note of it, too."
Examine your ticket
"I have had cases where they have put the wrong registration number, the wrong street", the parking whizz explained.
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Details of the contravention are key, Barrie explains.
And the most important mistake that ticket issuers can make is where the alleged parking error took place.
He added: "The place in particular – sometimes the councils get the wrong location, it is very important that the time and date is shown correctly on the ticket.
"On the ticket it has to say the date the ticket was served and the date of the contravention."
If it does not – there could be grounds for an appeal, Barrie noted.
Even getting the wrong colour of your car on the ticket, while "not necessarily fatal", is very important.
That is why examining the ticket is absolutely key – it might seem obvious but it is very important and could even see your ticket cancelled.
Nowadays it is very easy to take pictures with your phone, so it is important to snap your surroundings once you discover a ticket.
Barrie explained: "Take pictures of the parking signs, were they clear to read, were they hidden from view?
"Night or day, was it dusk, were there lights on, was it clear, what was the visibility like, was it rainy or sunny?
"These all come under gathering information."
He stressed obstacles such as overgrown hedges and undergrowth can obscure signs – if this is the case, get a photo and use it as evidence to claim your innocence that you missed the sign.
And more is better than less – so get snap snap snapping.
Do not hang about when you receive a parking ticket and avoid delaying it to appeal later, because you will forget.
Barrie added that you should make a note of the date the ticket came through the post on the envelope and letter it came in for your records.
You have 28 days from day you receive your ticket to appeal, you can do this online.
The council then have 56 days to respond to the appeal.
Never send original documents in the post as councils often lose these – always make copies.
And when appealing, Barrie stressed: "Be courteous, be clear when you are putting forward your case.
"The council must always consider extenuating circumstances which might mitigate your situation… by law they have to consider them."
Barrie says: "If you are really unhappy with the decision of the council once they have gone through the whole process – you can appeal to the Independent Parking Adjudicator.
The group are lawyers and barristers who have expert knowledge of parking law and can get you out of a deflating situation.
Barrie noted councils sometimes reoffer a 50 percent discount so you don't go to the adjudicator.
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Barrie stressed that threats to go to the parking adjudicator are partly responsible for 25.6 percent of all appeals ending up with councils saying they will not contest the appeal.
You can get a in-person or online hearing when you go via the independent parking adjudicator.
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