Appeal Carflow PCN For Free

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Our Carflow PCN Appeal Promise

The good news is that Carflow issue their PCN (parking charge  notice) after 14 days. Meaning they are often invalid and if you appeal as the registered keeper, your ticket will be cancelled. If this is the case, use our Parking Appeal Letter App to write your appeal and get your ticket cancelled.

We have completed over 1,000 private parking appeals including Carflow for motorists and saved thousands. 

Relax and follow this guide to get your Carflow tickets resolved. If your appeal fails, we recommend paying it so it does not escalate to debt recovery or court claim.

Table of Contents

About Carflow Parking Tickets

Carflow manages car parks and provides landowners with ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) cameras across various sites in the UK. 

Carflow is a member of the British Parking Association  and their second stage appeals are handled by POPLA who have a fair process for assessing cases.

Carflow sometimes send the parking ticket late. If you receive a parking ticket 14 days after the vehicle was in the car park, you should write your appeal on our website as the registered keeper and your ticket should be cancelled.

The common types of car parks managed by Carflow are:

  • Pay and display car parks – this is where you pay to park
  • Free duration plus payment – this is where you get 1-3 hours free and pay for additional time


Common places to get a Carflow Parking Ticket

  • Local Beaches
  • Tesco Car Park
  • Asda Car Park
  • Shopping Centre Car Park
  • NHS Hospital Car Park
  • Restaurant Car Parks
  • Resident Permit Car Park
  • Holiday Inn Car Park
  • Hilton Car Park
  • Council Car Park
  • Dentist Car Park
  • Gym Car Park

Carflow Mistakes to Check

Here are the top 3 reasons why some of our Carflow appeals were successful.

Ticket Issued Late

If Carflow do not issue your parking ticket within 14 days, you are guaranteed to win your appeal as long as you appeal as the keeper.

You Paid for Parking

Often, even when you pay for parking, Carflow will issue a parking charge. Use our guide below to calculate your stay.

No POFA 2012

POFA 2012 is a law for making vehicle owners responsible for parking tickets. If this is not mentioned, your PCN may be not be valid.

Private Parking & Your Rights

We will share our experience on how Parking Mate UK has successfully won appeals against Carflow and how to use our app to write your private parking appeal letter.

The two most important things to know about private parking are:

  1. Use POFA 2012 to your advantage and never tell Carflow who the driver was, the reason for this is that the Carflow has to first comply with POFA 2012, a law that was passed to protect vehicle keepers. Drivers have much less protection in law.
  2. Carflow has to prove their case, in the case of British Parking Association operators, there is a checklist below of the key things you must look out for in every single appeal to improve your chances of winning. All the items discussed below are included in the Parking Mate UK app, you simply need to understand them before you write your letter.

Protections of Freedoms Act 2012

This law was passed to ban clamping and to regulate how parking is managed on private land and car parks. The key things to remember are that the law brought about 4 conditions that Carflow must comply with in order to make vehicle keepers liable for a parking ticket. These 4 conditions are what the enforcement of private parking tickets is based on. The full article can be found here.

The first Condition Is That Carflow -

  • has the right to enforce against the driver of the vehicle the requirement to pay the unpaid parking charges; but
  • is unable to take steps to enforce that requirement against the driver because the creditor does not know both the name of the driver and a current address for service for the driver.
person holding silver pen signing photographers signature
  • This simply means that Carflow must have a contract with the landowner or some sort of authorisation to issue parking tickets. As private car parks are sometimes owned by a company doing business nearby, parking companies are sometimes brought in to manage the car park. The landowner should have a written agreement with parking company.

  • Section b means that because Carflow often do not know who was driving, they use POFA 2012 to make the vehicle keeper liable. This is simply done by stating on the letter that “if after a period of 28 days no payment or appeal is made, they will have the right to recover the remaining amount from the keeper”.

When our parking appeal letter app asks, “Is the operator using POFA 2012”, you should check if the operator mentions POFA 2012 anywhere in the letter especially to say they will transfer liability.

If you appeal your Carflow PCN as the vehicle keeper, the operator must comply with POFA 2012.

The Second Condition Is That Carflow -

  • (a) has given a notice to driver in accordance with paragraph 7, followed by a notice to keeper in accordance with paragraph 8; or
  • (b) has given a notice to keeper in accordance with paragraph 9.
Sample Parking Ticket

The second condition is all about checking if your Carflow PCN has been issued correctly.

  • If your PCN was put on your vehicle, you will have to go through the “Notice to Driver” checklist.
  • If your PCN was issued by post, you will go through the “Notice to Keeper” checklist. This section is simple on the app, simply read through the options and tick the option that applies to you.

The Third Condition Is That Carflow -

  • (a) the creditor (or a person acting for or on behalf of the creditor) has made an application for the keeper’s details in relation to the period of parking to which the unpaid parking charges relate;
  • (b) the application was made during the relevant period for the purposes of paragraph 8(4) (where a notice to driver has been given) or 9(4) (where no notice to driver has been given);
  • (c) the information sought by the application is provided by the Secretary of State to the applicant.

This one is pretty straight forward. It simply means that the operator has to get the vehicle owner details from the DVLA and no other sources. If you are contesting a case and it appears your details were not obtained from the DVLA, you should consider complaining to the DVLA and ICO for keeper data misuse.

The Fourth Condition Is That Carflow -

Any applicable requirements prescribed under this paragraph were met at the beginning of the period of parking to which the unpaid parking charges relate.

Compliance with the BPA/IPC Approved Operators Scheme

In order to get the keeper details from the DVLA, the operator has to comply with the rules set out by their respective trade association in their Approved Operator Scheme. The AOS has rules that the operator must comply with including:

  • Consideration time and grace periods after a parking session
  • Cancelling parking charges for errors with the vehicle registration
  • Putting the right signs at the entrance or car parks
  • Putting the right size of text, lighting and placement of signs with terms and conditions
  • Having authorisation from the landowners before issuing parking charges
  • How to manage appeals, complaints and many more

The rules that the Carflow has to comply with to make the vehicle keeper liable are quite extensive. This is why we always recommend that you appeal your parking ticket as the vehicle keeper. You are not doing yourself any favours by revealing the driver.

So, in summary, by simply using the checklist for POFA 2012 on the Parking Mate UK app, you can check if:

  1. Your ticket was issued within 14 days
  2. If the Carflow is using POFA 2012
  3. If the ticket has the right wording
  4. If Carflow has put the right signage
  5. Your PCN should be cancelled because of a keying error

Carflow Has to Prove Their Case

POPLA and The IAS often confirm that Carflow has to prove their case to enforce parking tickets.

When Carflow issues a parking ticket, for example:

  • For overstaying at a car park
  • Not paying for parking
  • Not displaying your permit correctly
  • Not parking in the correct bay and so on …

They must also be able to prove that the contravention happened. It’s not enough just stating that the contravention happened, therefore, it is your responsibility to ask questions where something does not seem right.

The evidence provided by the operator must be accompanied by the correct signage. Signs which are too far, difficult to read or not lit are often dismissed and the appeal allowed in the motorist’s favour.

How to Calculate your Parking Duration

Say a car was in a car park for 1 hour 15 minutes, but you paid to park for 1 hour, you can easily get around this by using the rules in your favour. Here is how we breakdown the parking session and then confirm that the contravention did not occur:

  • Entry time: 12:00
  • Consideration Period: 12:00 – 12:05
  • Parking Period: 12:05 – 13:05
  • Grace Period: 13:05 – 13:15
  • Exit Time: 13:13

If the car park is free, also include the grace period at the end of the free parking session.

Sample appeal summary: The driver did not overstay in the car park as they entered and left within the time they paid for. The consideration period and grace period show when the driver accepted the terms of parking and that they left within 10 minutes after the parking session ended.

By summarising the time spent in the car park this way, you can see clearly that the driver was within the time they paid for. So in short, you have an extra 5 minutes to play with when it comes to private parking and if you parked over 1 hour. The terms of parking only start once you have accepted the parking terms and conditions and decided to park.

How to Write Your Carflow Appeal Letter

If you write your Carflow Appeal Letter using our app, you will be asked to enter an appeal summary. This section tells you how to complete this your summary so that you don’t reveal the driver by accident. Writing an appeal letter requires you to act like a parking lawyer, think through every word and avoid the pitfalls. Here is a summary of how you should word your statements:

Here are a few examples on how to write your appeal summary: 

  • The driver paid for parking and a copy of the permit is provided below
  • The driver was a customer at the supermarket and proof of purchase is provided below
  • The driver overstayed because they have mobility problems and a blue badge, a copy of the front of the blue badge is provided below
  • The driver was delayed by traffic getting back to their car
The appeal letter app will give you simple options to choose from.

1. Make sure you are relaxed

Try to release your anger and tension before you write your appeal letter. This will help you think carefully through what happened and prevent mistakes in your appeal letter. I recommend having a nice warm cup of your favourite beverage before starting. A simple and straight to the point appeal letter will be more effective than a rant.

2. Appeal as the vehicle Keeper

This is an important tip. The vehicle keeper has the most protection and therefore you should use everything in law and the BPA rules to your advantage.

3. Check compliance with POFA 2012

Often, if the operator does not rely on POFA 2012, then they are not able to transfer liability to the keeper. However, if you make the mistake of appealing as the driver, this won’t matter. You should therefore check first if POFA 2012 is used and then use that to get your ticket cancelled.

4. Collect Photo Evidence

If you have evidence of parking, you should include this with your appeal letter. Good examples of evidence include a permit purchased for parking, a screenshot from online banking, a receipt from the retailer and if you were doing a delivery for Deliveroo or Uber Eats driver, keep a copy of the receipt from the customer as proof that you were collecting an order.

5. Calculate the Parking Duration

Use our guide on how to calculate the time you were in the car park, it will help you know whether you overstayed or not. Furthermore, read the signs to see if there is a period of free parking. If the free parking time is over 1 hour, you can add the 10 minutes grace period to the end of your free session and to the end of your paid session as they are separate parking sessions.

Common Mistakes In Appeals

We have completed over 1,000 appeals and here is a summary of the common mistakes we see motorists make when doing appeals.

1. Writing the Appeal in First Person

When you write phrases such as; I think the fine is unfair, I have no money, I paid for parking, My car was …etc, you immediately reveal that you were the driver. Therefore, if the driver is identified, even where POFA 2012 does not apply like Scotland and Northern Ireland, you will lose your rights and be hassled for payment.

2. Mitigation Reason's Don't Work

Where your appeal is based on something that happened to you or a personal reason. You will likely end up revealing the driver and make matters worse for yourself. POPLA have said on numerous times that only the operator has the discretion to allow an appeal based on mitigation. Only use mitigation if you are writing to the store but never to the operator.

3. Asking the Operator for a discount

This one is very counter-productive, if you show willingness to pay a parking charge, there is no doubt the operator will reject your appeal and make it seem like they are doing you a favour. Carflow will re-offer the discount after your appeal is rejected anyway, so there is no need to ask them to reduce the amount. This reason is does not help you, and you should avoid it.

4. Forgetting to contact the retailer

If you were a customer at a store, hotel or retail outlet, it often helps to contact the retailer and asking them to cancel the parking ticket. This often works for parking tickets at Asda, Sainsburys and Holiday Inn. If you contact the landowner, make sure you also send your appeal to the operator.Finally, the worst mistake is not appealing, if you don’t appeal, you make it easier for the operator to go to court.

POFA 2012 in Scotland and Northern Ireland

If you receive a Carflow ticket, you should write a very short and sweet appeal to the operator as the vehicle keeper. There is no need to try and explain yourself as POFA 2012 does not apply in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Simply say the following in your appeal summary:

“POFA 2012 does not currently apply and can not be used to transfer liability to the keeper. The driver will not be named, therefore the operator must allow the appeal, remove keeper details and cancel the parking charge”.

This appeal will be enough as long as you appeal as the vehicle keeper. Do not make the mistake of naming the driver at any point. Any company that contacts you regarding a parking charge can be given the same short and sweet appeal.

How to Submit Your Carflow Appeal

  • Go to Carflow’s appeal page
  • Enter your PCN details
  • Enter your details
  • In the appeal say “please see attached letter
  • Under supporting documentation, attach the PDF letter from the Parking Mate UK app
  • Click Submit

How to Submit Your POPLA Appeal

    • Go to
      Accept terms and enter verification code
    • Step 1: Choose “other grounds for appeal
    • Step 2: Select “”other“”
    • Step 3: Enter your details, vehicle REG and PCN details
    • Step 4: Reason for appeal “Please see attached letter” and select attach file
      Type of document: Letter
      What is the file: Letter
      How does it support your appeal: Full details of appeal
      Attach your letter, make sure your letter is attached
      You can ignore additional questions
    • Step 5: Review Summary and Submit Appeal

    Closing: Your POPLA password will be sent by email, you can use the verification code and password to track your appeal progress.”

How to Pay Your Carflow PCN

  • Go to Carflow’s payment page
  • Click Payment then Pay
  • Enter your personal and card details
  • Click pay to finish