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Another train penalty fare problem!!

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I found this site when I googled the revenue protection support service, so this is my first post.

Having read all the other train threads, I think this one is a little different.

My son bought a ticket at Kings Cross using his debit card. When he arrived at Huntingdon, he couldn't find the ticket anywhere and assumed he must have dropped it in his rush to get off the train. At the ticket barrier he was given a £40 penalty notice, which we all felt was a bit excessive for a £23.00 fare. He only had £20 on him so paid that amount and the inspector recommended he write to appeal sending a copy of his bank statement which showed he had bought a ticket. We appealed immediately but received a curt letter from the Independent penalty fares service saying he had to pay the full penalty. Unfortunately, my son was in London at college and we were away, so the letter wasn't opened until after the deadline had passed. I wrote again enclosing a cheque for the remaining £20.00. I apologised and explained the delay in responding, but also expressed my disappointment at their lack of flexibility; after all he could prove he had bought a ticket so there was never any intention to avoid payment.

This letter crossed in the post with their final notice which other members of this site have already reproduced. So now we owe yet another £20 in admin charges.

So a £23 train journey will eventually cost us £83 if we pay the extra admin charge.

We telephoned the RPSS yesterday and were told that if we wanted to query things further we needed to go back to the train company. I phoned them this morning and was referred back to the RPSS. I even telephoned the Independent penalty fares appeal service but again was told to call the RPSS.

I'm now at the point where I feel like giving up and paying the admin charges, so would be very grateful for any advice.

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It's people like you who give them their Christmas bonus. They rely on people not being bothered to kick up a fuss.


Don't pay the admin charge, it is excessive anyway, kick up a fuss and demand what you have already paid back, even threaten court action if thats what it takes, you have the proof and they have no reason or lawful justification whatsoever to steel from from you.


The term 'rip-off-Britain' has never been more true with every department of the government and their offshoots out to grab as much as they can in any way possible, legally or otherwise.


Make them a drink short at their staff party this Christmas.

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Whilst I sypathise with the situation that you find yourself in. The problem is that without the ticket he actually had no proof that he had one for his own use. Just because he had purchased a ticket doesn't prove it was for his use. It would be easy for two people to travel together on one ticket and if caught the one without could quite easily say that they had lost it, but show proof that they had bought one. Hence the probable reason as to why your appeal got turned down.

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Thanks for the advice.

Coniff - I'm not someone who can't be bothered to make a fuss. In the last 18 months I've gone into battle with a company that writes wills and provides probate services who conned my mother into naming them as executors. I've also just won a successful 12 month battle with my prolonged disability insurance provider which eventually involved the financial services ombudsman. So I'm no stranger to fighting for my rights and am perfectly prepared to challenge this, if there is some chance of getting somewhere. It's just with this one, technically my son was in the wrong, so I don't want to end up with an even bigger bill and possible criminal proceedings against him.

Has anyone actually challenged these penalty fares and admin charges and won?

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Yes a penalty fare with admin charge was challenged in Feb 07 at City of Westminster Court the case was dismissed,and the claimant was told they were lucky that RPSS didn't counter claim for court costs.

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