Drivers in France can now challenge the parking fine before paying

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The decision was taken by the Constitutional Council (the constitutionnal Council, the highest constitutional authority in France) on Wednesday 9 September.The council ruled: “The legislature cannot guarantee or guarantee that the advance payment does not substantially interfere with the right to an effective legal remedy.”

In practice, this means that drivers who receive parking fines will now be free to challenge the fine before paying it. This contrasts with the previous rules of January 1, 2018, which stipulated that drivers who receive a fine must first pay it regardless of the circumstances – and would then only have the right to challenge the fine and possibly receive a fine. refund if successful.

The council has now ruled it unconstitutional and said the new law will take effect immediately, for all existing and future cases that have yet to be tried.

He continued: “In its decision, the Constitutional Council recalls that under Article 16 of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789, the right of the persons concerned to exercise an effective remedy before a court must not be seriously violated. ”

This means that people must have the right to appeal before being punished.

The decision comes after Jacques Toubon, then in the role of Defender of Rights (the independent human rights expert of the Republic), had already recommended in January this year that this law be amended.

He underlined “the difficulties of imposing such a payment in certain particular situations”, for example, if a driver has been the victim of a theft, or a falsification of license plate.

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