Penalty charge notice FAQs
Frequently asked questions about a penalty charge notice.
Published: 24 January 2021
Last updated: 29 January 2021
Why have I received a PCN(penalty charge notice) for a parking contravention?
You received the PCN as you were the driver or the person appearing to be in charge of a vehicle that was observed committing an alleged parking contravention in Westminster. You can see details and photographs relating to your PCN online.
Please also see our guide to common parking contraventions, including yellow lines, loading bans, pay-to-park bays, resident bays and suspended bays.
Why have I received a PCN for a moving traffic contravention?
You have received the PCN as you are the registered keeper of a vehicle that was observed committing an alleged moving traffic contravention in Westminster. You can see details, photographs and camera footage relating to your PCN online.
Please also see our guide to common moving traffic contraventions. Further information regarding cameras in Westminster, including a list of camera locations and contraventions enforced by camera, is available online.
I displayed a Blue Badge but I still received a PCN, why is this?
The full concessions given by the national Blue Badge Scheme do not apply when parking in the City of Westminster.
Along with 3 other boroughs in Central London (City of London, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, and London Borough of Camden, south of Euston Road), we are exempted from the scheme by legislation because of exceptional pressure on parking and road space.
For more information, please refer to the Blue Badge Scheme leaflet produced by the Department for Transport.
In the City of Westminster, Blue Badge holders cannot park in or on:
- single or double yellow lines
- Pay-to-Park bays without payment
- resident bays or specialised bays such as doctor bays, diplomat bays, police bays or hospital bays.
- suspended bays
- taxi ranks, bus stops or cycle lanes
- bays that are dedicated to one specific disabled driver
In Westminster, Blue Badge holders can park in:
- Blue Badge bays – free parking for 4 hours maximum during controlled hours, unless signposted otherwise (free parking for as long as necessary outside of these times)
- Pay-to-park bays with payment – badge holders are entitled to park for an extra hour after the expiry of a payment (bay maximum stay regulations must be observed)
How can I challenge my PCN(make a representation)?
Remember to include your PCN reference number, your name, address and any evidence you may have in support of your challenge.
Where can I see photos or video footage relating to my PCN?
Photos and camera footage associated with your PCN is available for you to view online.
I’ve made a representation, when will I find out if it has been accepted or rejected?
We aim to respond to all PCN representations within 10 working days.
Please avoid contacting us for an update about your challenge during this time, as this may cause further delay. Please also allow extra time for your challenge to reach us if you have sent it in by post.
I’m getting an error message when trying to challenge online, what should I do?
Please check to ensure all mandatory fields have been completed. Also check the file formats and size of any evidence you are uploading. If you are submitting evidence, we can accept JPG, BMP, PDF, TIF, GIF and PNG formats and each individual document uploaded needs to be less than 5MB.
Can I challenge my PCN by email?
Yes, you can send an email to: [email protected] Remember to include your PCN reference number, your name, address and to attach any evidence you may have to support your challenge.
I can’t upload evidence in support of my challenge via the website, what should I do?
Please check the file format and size. We can accept JPG, BMP, PDF, TIF, GIF and PNG files and each individual file uploaded needs to be less than 5MB.
Alternatively, you have the option to email your challenge to: [email protected], the maximum file upload size being 8MB, or a written challenge can be submitted by post to City of Westminster Parking Services, PO Box 733, Redhill, RH1 9FN. Please remember to include any supporting evidence.
I’ve received a Notice to Owner (NtO) in the post, but I didn't get a PCN on my vehicle, what should I do?
You can find details and photos relating to the PCN online. The PCN would have been fixed to the vehicle or handed to the driver or person appearing to be in charge of the vehicle.
However, we are aware that PCNs are occasionally removed from vehicles by third parties. If you believe that may have happened, you can make a request to pay the 50% discounted amount by phone, please call 020 7823 4567.
How long do I have to pay my PCN at the 50% discounted rate?
The 50% discounted payment rate applies for 14 days from the date of service of the PCN. This applies to PCNs issued on-street for parking contraventions, postal ‘Vehicle Driven Away’ (VDA) PCNs and postal PCNs issued for moving traffic contraventions.
If you have received a letter rejecting a challenge but giving a further opportunity to pay at the 50% discounted rate, the payment should be made within the time frame specified.
The discount period has expired; can I get another opportunity to pay at the reduced rate?
Yes, if you have received an on-street issued PCN and the Notice to Owner (NtO) has not yet been issued.
Yes, if you have received a moving traffic PCN or a postal parking PCN and in either instance the Charge Certificate has not yet been issued.
You can make a request to pay the discounted amount by phone, please call 020 7823 4567.
If my challenge is rejected will I still be able to pay at the discounted rate?
Yes, if your challenge is for an on-street issued PCN and the Notice to Owner (NtO) has not yet been issued.
Yes, if you your challenge is for a moving traffic PCN or a postal parking PCN and in either instance a Charge Certificate has not yet been issued.
No, if an NtO has already been issued, although you may still be offered the chance to pay the PCN at the discounted rate depending upon your circumstances, at the Council’s discretion. For example, if you did not receive the original PCN, or circumstances prevented you from challenging at an earlier stage.
I wasn’t the driver when the PCN was incurred, am I responsible for paying it?
If the driver does not pay the PCN, then ultimately the registered keeper of the vehicle will become liable for the charge. The registered keeper can only transfer the liability for a PCN if the vehicle was on hire/lease when the contravention occurred or was disposed of or sold prior to, or purchased after the contravention.
What evidence do I need to provide to transfer the liability of a PCN, if the vehicle was on hire/lease when the PCN was issued?
Short term hire (less than 6 months)
We require a signed copy of the hire agreement which should conform to the Statutory Instrument 2000 No. 2546 - The Road Traffic (Owner Liability) Regulations 2000, Schedule 2, Regulation 3.
The following details should be included:
- registration mark of vehicle hired
- make and model of vehicle hired
- time and date of commencement of original hiring period
- expected time and date of expiry of original hiring period
- a signed statement of liability
- the hirer’s full name, the hirer's permanent address, date of birth, driving licence number, driving licence expiry, driving licence country of issue (if not UK)
If the hirer is a company then a date of birth and a driver’s licence details are not required.
Long term Lease (6 months or over)
We require the following information:
- registration mark of the leased vehicle
- date of commencement of original lease period
- expected date of expiry of original lease period
- the hirer’s full name and permanent address
I’ve received a Notice to Owner (NtO) or postal PCN for a vehicle I no longer own, what should I do?
If you sold or disposed of the vehicle before the contravention occurred you should submit a representation (see ‘How can I challenge my PCN (make a representation)?’) and provide the new keeper’s name, address and the date of sale or transfer. Please provide copies of any relevant evidence, for example a sales invoice, new keeper supplement (V5c) or letter from the DVLA.
I’ve received a Notice to Owner (NtO) or postal PCN for a vehicle I purchased after the date of the PCN, what should I do?
If you purchased the vehicle after the contravention occurred you should submit a representation (see ‘How can I challenge my PCN (make a representation)?’) and provide the previous keeper’s name, address and the date of sale or transfer. Please provide copies of any relevant evidence, for example a sales receipt, new keeper supplement (V5c) or letter from the DVLA.
I’ve received a Notice to Owner (NtO) or postal PCN for a vehicle I’ve never owned, what should I do?
If it appears that your vehicle registration mark (VRM) has been incorrectly recorded on the PCN, please call 0207 823 4567 and one of our advisors will be able to assist you.
If it appears that your VRM has been cloned, we recommend that you report this asap to the police and the DVLA. Once you have obtained a crime reference number from the police you should make a representation and include this along with any additional evidence you have. This will also help you if you receive similar Notices from us and/or other enforcement agencies.
How can I pay my PCN?
You can pay for a PCN online, by phone, by cheque or in person at a Westminster Post Office. Full details regarding payment methods and information about how to make an online payment by credit or debit card are available online.
How can I request that a reasonable adjustment be made?
If a protected characteristic, listed in the Equality Act 2010, or another condition makes it difficult for you to challenge or pay your Penalty Charge Notice, we will be happy to consider what reasonable adjustments we can make to assist. To request an adjustment please email [email protected] or call our Parking Services Team on: 0207 823 4567.