(a printable version of theses informations is available here)
The main parking tickets
Prohibited parking (“stationnement interdit”): 1st class ticket (a 17€ fine which can be increased to 33€; your vehicle can’t be taken away): article R. 417-1 and following of the Code de la Route (French law on road trafic).
Obstructive parking – slight inconvenience (“stationnement gênant”): 2nd class ticket (a 35€ fine which can be increased to 75€; your vehicle might be taken away if you refuse to move it): article R. 417-10 of the Code de la Route.
Obstructive parking – severe inconvenience (“stationnement gravement gênant”): 4th class ticket (a 135€ fine which can be increased to 375€; your vehicle might be taken away if you refuse to move it): article R. 417-11 of the Code de la Route.
Dangerous parking (“stationnement dangereu “): 4th class ticket (a 135€ fine which can be increased to 375€; your vehicle might be taken away if you refuse to move it): article R. 417-9 of the Code de la Route.
The fine is increased when it is not paid on time.
Be careful: if you do not move your vehicle, you can get fined with different kinds of tickets (prohibited, obstructive, or dangerous parking) but you CAN’T get fined with more than one ticket of each category. It is illegal for the police to do that.
In the Boulogne and Vincennes parks : The new ruling passed on March 1st, 2012
In the Boulogne and Vincennes parks, the new ruling prohibits:
– stopping or parking vans;
– driving vans on most roads;
– stopping or parking any vehicle at night on most roads.
It is recommended to know exactly which places and roads are forbidden; you can find the information in the text of the ruling (Arrêté n° 2012 P 0042).
This means that you might get tickets for prohibited and/or obstructive parking on the ground of this new ruling, in addition to the Code de la route.
When the police give you a parking ticket
You can write a comment on the ticket (“Procès verbal”), for example, to report a major irregularity.
When the police ask you to move your vehicle for reasons of obstructive or dangerous parking, it is recommended that you move it, in order to prevent them from taking your vehicle away. If you agree to leave, the police are not allowed to take your vehicle away and impound it.
How to dispute a parking ticket
The allowed period to contest a parking ticket is 45 days.
A parking ticket can be disputed when it is irregular, for example:
– if the registration number of the police officer is not specified on it;
– or if the licence plate number of your vehicle specified on it is not correct;
– or if it is not signed by the police;
– or if the location of the parking spot specified on it is not correct;
– or if the exact nature of the offence is not specified on it;
– or if you did not commit the offence you are accused of;
– or if the amount of the fine is not the right one; – or if you already got fined with another ticket of the same category for the same parking infraction (if you haven’t moved the vehicle in the meantime);
– or if the law or the ruling is being enforced in a discriminatory way (if another vehicle is parked in the same way as yours but you’re the only one who gets a parking ticket).
When you contest a parking ticket, you have to write your own version of the facts. To provide evidence that the ticket is irregular, it is recommended to add:
– any useful photographs (for example, photographs showing the location of your vehicle and another vehicle that did not get a ticket), on which the date and time must appear;
– testimonies from people who were there when you got fined, with a copy of a document proving their identity.
To reduce the amount of an increased fine
If you couldn’t contest a parking ticket (because it is regular or it is too late) or it didn’t work when you tried, you might have to pay an increased fine. In that case, it is possible to get a 20% discount :
– if you pay the increased fine within 30 days ;
– or if you write to the ” Trésor public ” asking for a graceful discount of 20%, explaining why you cannot pay the full amount of the fine.