Rail Fare Evasion - A Definition
The heading speaks for itself. Every passenger, unless authorised to travel by way of an issued Freedom Pass or Staff Pass, is obliged to purchase a train ticket in order to travel. Such a train ticket must be valid for travel for the ENTIRE journey.
Tickets, stating the obvious need to be purchased either by way of an automatic self-service machine, or from a ticket office. The other option is by online via your computer.
In the event that the passenger does not have a valid ticket for the purposes of travel, and does board a train for travel, it is at the DISCRETION of the Revenue Ticket Inspector to issue a penalty fare, or to take detail`s for a pending prosecution.
Penalty Fares vary between the railway companies, but generally amount to twice the applicable single fare to the next stop, in addition to the full single fare so to complete the journey to the destination station.
At the present time, due to the numbers of passengers travelling without a valid ticket, Revenue Inspector`s are, on instructions, dealing with passengers who avoid payment, by way of a report for consideration to prosecute
Of course, there are valid reasons as to why such prosecutions should be challenged, and indeed it is right to do so, to prevent being Summonsed to appear before a Magistrate`s Court, or indeed, to go to trial on a plea of not guilty being entered.
In the event of a penalty fare being issued, and such penalty is considered unfair, there is a process of appeal, which must be issued in writing within a period of 21 days of the penalty being issued. The matter is then dealt with by an appeals service, being independent of the respective train operating company.
For a consultation in respect of a rail fare evasion matter contact Penman Sedgwick LLP, who are very experienced in such matters.
If you need advice on a legal matter please contact us, and we will respond as soon as possible, or call us on 01923 225212.