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Many drivers have experienced the frustration that comes when someone parks in front of your driveway, blocking your car in.
But what are the actual rules about where people can and cannot park? And what can you do if you find yourself trapped in by another driver?
According to Rule 243 of the Highway Code, drivers should not leave their cars in front of an entrance to a property. Breaking this rule can land drivers with a hefty fine, or even a prison sentence, as some of its rules are backed up by official traffic laws. But, parking in front of someone’s driveway is not one of the rules covered by law.
In fact, it isn’t actually illegal for a motorist to park in front of a private driveway, according to safemotoring.co.uk, and the Highway Code can only assist frustrated homeowners if the vehicle is causing an obstruction to a road.
Charlotte Dixon, a solicitor at DAS Law, told the Mirror: “The first step with any anti-social parking problem is to contact your local authority or the police; however there is little the law can do to support homeowners – even if a car blocks your driveway.
“One option that’s available is to pursue a legal claim for nuisance on the grounds that the driver is interfering with your use and enjoyment of your property – but to do so you’d need to know the identity of the offending vehicle’s driver.”
As for police intervention, it’s not guaranteed that they will be able to help the situation. A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: “If someone parks their vehicle on your driveway without your permission, this is trespassing. This is a civil dispute and not something we can help you with.
“If it happens repeatedly with the same person/vehicle you might want to seek advice from Citizens Advice or a solicitor, but we would always recommend having a polite word with the driver first, as there may have been a simple misunderstanding.”
And as for blocking a driveway, the spokesman added: “If someone has blocked your driveway so you can’t drive in, we appreciate this can be very frustrating.
“If you can find the owner of the vehicle, we’d first recommend asking them politely to move it. If you can’t find them, try leaving a note on their windscreen. After all, they may not realise they have caused a problem.
“If this doesn’t work, please contact your local council. If a person has blocked your driveway and is preventing you from getting your own vehicle out, we may be able to help.”
In this situation it a person can report an incident of anti-social behaviour to their local police force.
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