Responsibility for enforcing the law relating to illegal parking and stopping of motor vehicles rests with traffic wardens and an Garda Síochána. Illegal parking and stopping of vehicles on public roads are considered traffic offences. Together with an Garda Síochána, traffic wardens are empowered to issue fixed-charge fines for these offences.
Local authorities employ traffic wardens to monitor instances of these offences in their areas. The principal legislation governing this area is the Local Authorities (Traffic Wardens) Act 1975 as amended. The offences for which traffic wardens can issue fixed-charge fines are parking and motor tax disk offences, and are set out in the Local Authorities (Traffic Wardens) Act 1975 (Fixed Charge Offences) Regulations 2006 (SI 136/2006).
Duties of a traffic warden
In situations where a traffic warden has reasonable grounds for believing someone is committing or has committed an offence, they may deliver a fixed-charge notice on a prescribed form. This form is commonly known as a "parking ticket". This form will state that you have committed an offence and will state the date, time and location of the offence and will detail your vehicle registration.
Most traffic wardens use a hand-held computerised device to issue tickets and the local authority keeps a record of all tickets issued in a main database. Using this database, the local authority can find out how many parking fines a particular individual has accumulated.
Parking is restricted in certain place. For example, in certain towns and cities, the local authorities have the power to restrict parking at certain times and in certain places. These parking restrictions are clearly indicated through signs clearly displayed at the roadside. You can read more about parking fines and restrictions here.
A system of fixed-charge fines for illegal parking and non-payment of parking fees is in place. Both traffic wardens and members of the Gardaí issue fines.
The parking ticket will contain the following details: a reference number, the location of the offence, the registration number of the car, the amount of the fine and the date and time the ticket was issued.
If you have been given a parking ticket or notified by a traffic warden of an offence, you have 28 days commencing on the beginning of the date of the notice to pay the fine. If it is not paid within 28 days, the fine is increased by 50% and if it is still unpaid after a further 28 days then court proceedings are initiated.
It is an offence to remove or interfere with a parking ticket that has been placed on the vehicle of another person. If you do so, you could be liable to a fine.
Anyone obstructing a traffic warden acting in the course of their duty is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine.
Traffic wardens can request or demand your name and address. They are obliged to carry identification with them and to identify themselves as traffic wardens. Failure to give your name and address on demand is also an offence and you may be liable on a summary conviction to a fine.
Fixed charge fines for parking offences can range from €40 to €80, depending on the nature of the offence.