The Mersey Gateway Bridge that crosses the River Mersey between Widness and Runcorn in Cheshire opened to traffic in October 2017. The bridge is a toll bridge. There are no payment booths and the toll charge must be made either in advance, or by midnight the following day. The payment system is called Merseyflow and is operated by emovis on behalf of Halton Borough Council.
We have introduced this Traffic Enforcement Centre FAQ page to our Bailiff Advice Online website in order to answer the many questions that we receive via our helpline or online Enquiry Form from motorists regarding Out of Time witness statements (forms TE7 and TE9) or Statutory Declarations (forms PE2 and PE3)
We are seeing a significant increase in enquiries from motorists where a bailiff is enforcing multiple Dart Charges that they had been unaware of. In most cases, the reason is due to notices being sent to a previous address, or where the Dart Charge account has been closed etc. Fortunately, legislation is in place to protect the motorist. All bailiff enforcement will be placed 'on hold' for approx 4-6 weeks when a Dart Charge Out of Time Witness Statement (TE7 and TE9) is submitted to the Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC). If accepted, all bailiff fees will be cancelled and a new Penalty Charge Notice issued allowing you to pay at the earlier discounted rate.
Despite the bailiff regulations being overhauled in 2014, some internet sites and bailiff forums continue to provide misleading and inaccurate information about bailiff enforcement. We introduced this page (Internet Myths about Bailiff Enforcement) to correct the most misleading myths and fictitious loopholes.
Mainly because of misleading information on the internet, many people believe that they can avoid bailiff enforcement by claiming that they are vulnerable or from a vulnerable household. By and large, when it comes to bailiff enforcement, vulnerability is usually reserved for extreme cases. An example could be where your medical condition could worsen if a bailiff were to visit you or where you are unable to manage your own affairs etc. Also, people may be constantly vulnerable (due to permanent lack of mental capacity or very severe disability etc). Others may be temporarily vulnerable. This page explores vulnerability in relation to bailiff enforcement.
Many people receiving a letter or a visit from a bailiff/enforcement agent believe that a way of avoiding bailiff fees is to make payment direct to the council or the Magistrates Court of just the amount owed to the council or court (minus bailiff fees). Unfortunately, bailiff fees will not be avoided by this method. This pages outlines why.
We receive a significant number of enquiries via our helpline and online Enquiry Form regarding Dart Charge enforcement. The majority of these are from motorists who only became aware that a Penalty Charge Notice had been issued when they received correspondence or a visit from a bailiff. This is usually due to notices being sent to a previous address. Many times, the reason is because the motorist had forgotten to update his or her V5C (Log Book) with DVLA when moving house. There is a procedure that needs to be followed in such cases which is outlined on this page.
One of the most common enquiries that we receive via our helpline or Enquiry Form is the subject of Magistrate Court fines and whether or not the bailiff/enforcement agent is required to have the distress warrant/warrant of control in his possession and if so, whether he must provide a copy to you.