There are over 8 million parking tickets issued every year here in the UK, most of which are paid without question but a certain amount of these are actually contested by drivers and often successfully. Thousands of appeals result in the penalty charge notice for illegal parking being withdrawn by the council without question. Sometimes it can be because the councils have such a massive backlog of fines they simply lack the resources to look into the individual case and simply accept the appeal and withdraw the fine. If you decide to go through with this you will need to apply to the council for an appeal notice form. You have to enter your reason for appealing against the penalty and the acceptable grounds for winning an appeal are as follows -
That you were not the owner of the vehicle when the offence occurred, this can be in the case of having bought the car after the offence or having sold it and the offence being committed after the sale. Another acceptable scenario is if the parking signs were not visible, obscured or damaged, or if the parking ticket was not issued after having paid for parking. Other scenarios being if your car was being driven by someone who had stolen it or if you happen to be a hire car company and the car was out on hire. Another angle is to contest the validity of the parking regulation order but that only applies when the parking law is actually not correct and is very rare. One other grounds for contesting the fine is to say that the ticket was not attached to your car and so you were unaware of the parking offence - this is often successful in cases where the driver drove off before the traffic warden was able to physically apply the parking ticket to the car but these days the wardens photograph the car straight away so this defence is no longer valid.
If you had a valid permit at the time then this is a reasonable grounds for appeal and is often successful providing you are the legal owner of the certificate and that you were the driver at the time. A great deal of fraud goes on in this area and traffic wardens and police units are now on the lookout for this and heavy fines are now in operation.
Sometimes you can contest a parking offence if there is a detail missing or an incorrect detail on the penalty charge such as the reason for the ticket, the date or time, the penalty charge and in the wording of the statement regarding how long you have to pay and the address it has to be sent to, if any of these details have been left out you can appeal.
As you probably already know, when you get a parking ticket you are given 14 days to pay £60 or else you have to pay the full amount which is £120 - if you decide to appeal against the penalty you run the risk of having to pay the full amount if your appeal is rejected.