Information about PCNs

A penalty charge notice (PCN) is a legal document issued or served when a vehicle has been seen in contravention of a parking or traffic restriction.

It is served either directly on the vehicle (or to the person who appears to be the driver) at the time of the contravention or through the post, notifying the registered keeper of the contravention.

Newham PCNs have a unique 10-digit reference number, starting with PN. Always read the information on the PCN or any other statutory document very carefully before proceeding.

Where a PCN is issued under the Traffic Management Act (TMA) 2004, the council will respond to your challenge within 56 days of the date it was received.

Any PCNs issued by a camera, such as bus lanes, no entry restrictions, motor vehicle restriction zones, pedestrian zones in pursuant to the Road Traffic Regulations Act 1984 (as amended),  London Local Authorities 1996 and Transport for London Act 2003 will be responded to as soon as possible. There is no corresponding provision within the Acts relating to bus lane and moving traffic contraventions which require that an Enforcement Authority must respond within a statutory time limit.

If you challenge your penalty charge notice within 14 days, or 21 days depending on the type of contravention and if your challenge is not accepted, the notice will be held at the discounted rate for a further 14 or 21 days from the date of our response to allow you to pay at the reduced rate.  

Types of PCN

Parking PCNs

Issued by a civil enforcement officer (CEO) or recorded by a camera operator in a control room or a closed-circuit television (CCTV) vehicle.

Bus lane PCNs

  • Recorded by a camera operator in a control room or a CCTV vehicle.

Moving traffic PCNs

  • Recorded by a camera operator in a control room or a CCTV vehicle.

Challenging a PCN

If you think you have been given a parking ticket in error, you can contest it. Before challenging a PCN you should view the supporting evidence.

If you do not pay or contest the PCN, you will receive further notices and may be contacted by certified enforcement agents.

Paying a PCN issued by an officer or a bus lane PCN

If you have received a PCN issued by an enforcement officer, or a bus lane PCN, you can:

  • pay at the discounted rate within 14 days
  • pay at the full rate within 28 days
  • make an informal challenge against the PCN, explaining why you think it was incorrectly issued together with any supporting evidence

If you do not pay or challenge the PCN within 28 days, you will be issued with a notice to owner (for parking PCNs) or an enforcement notice (bus lane PCNs).

Paying a parking PCN issued through CCTV

If you have received a parking PCN issued through CCTV, you can:

  • pay at the discounted rate within 21 days
  • pay at the full rate within 28 days
  • make formal representations to the council together with any supporting evidence

If you do nothing in this time period, a charge certificate will be sent and the charge increases by 50%.

Paying a moving traffic PCN

If you have received a moving traffic PCN, you can:

  • pay at the discounted rate within 14 days
  • pay at the full rate within 28 days
  • make formal representations to the council together with any supporting evidence

If you do nothing, a charge certificate will be sent and the charge increases by 50%.

Notice to owner or enforcement notice

When you receive the notice to owner or enforcement notice, you can:

  • pay the full charge within 28 days
  • make formal representations to the council together with any supporting evidence

If you do nothing, a charge certificate will be sent and the charge increases by 50%.

Charge certificates

If the penalty remains unpaid more than 28 days from the date of service of a postal PCN or a notice to owner or enforcement notice, we will send a charge certificate by post. This increases the charge by 50% of the original amount and gives the registered vehicle keeper 14 days to pay. There is no right of appeal at this stage. If you receive a charge certificate, you can no longer make a formal representation against the PCN.

If you were not aware of the contravention prior to receiving the charge certificate, or if you received no reply to a representation or an appeal, you will have to wait to make a statutory declaration/witness statement.

Order for recovery

If the registered owner of the vehicle does not respond to the charge certificate by making payment in full within 14 days, the Council can register the debt at the Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC) at Northampton County Court, and an order for recovery will be served. The order for recovery includes information on making a statutory declaration/witness statement, and you can contact the TEC if you have an enquiry about this stage of the process.

You can contact the Traffic Enforcement Centre by calling 0300 123 1059.

At this point, the outstanding amount on the PCN will increase by £8, which is a surcharge for the cost of registering the order. You have 21 days from the date of service to pay the outstanding amount on the order for recovery.

If you do nothing, the TEC may grant authority for a warrant of control to be issued and a certified enforcement agent will be asked to recover the debt from you. At this stage the case is passed to the Councils enforcement agents who you may bring additional charges against you.

Warrants issued by the Court (bailiffs)

If the penalty charge has not been paid within 21 days of the order for recovery being served, we will ask for a warrant of control. Once granted, it will be passed to our certified enforcement agent (bailiff) to recover the amount owed.

If you have been contacted about a PCN that you did not know about, or thought was paid or cancelled, you may contact the Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC) requesting an out-of-time witness statement. Once notification has been received from TEC, the actions of the enforcement agent will be put temporarily on hold.

A certified enforcement agent is allowed to charge recovery fees for every letter, visit and action taken as part of the effort to recover the outstanding amount. Recovery actions are taken on behalf the Newham Parking Service by OneSource Enforcement Services who can be contacted as follows:

0203 373 3588

[email protected]

Enforcement.onesource.co.uk  - live on-line chat service

We may also recycle warrants that have not been recovered to other enforcement agents