Has your car been blocked? What you LEGALLY can and can't do to parked cars
Having your car blocked in by another driver is one of the most frustrating things you can experience.
You're unable to get anywhere or do anything until the other driver decides to come back and move their car.
One motorist was left incensed when he spotted that his wife's car had been blocked in by an 'inconsiderate' Sheffield driver.
Will James said he contacted the police about the incident on Brightmore Drive who informed him there was little they could as it was not an'urgent matter'.
So, what are are you actually allowed to do to this offending vehicle.
Sadly, it doesn't seem like there is much you can do, according to DAS Law.
Charlotte Dixon, a solicitor at the firm, said: "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 home owners – even if a car blocks your driveway.
"The Highway Code can only help if the parked car is causing an obstruction to the road but not in relation to private land."
But, that doesn't mean that you can't have any options.
“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," Ms Dixon added.
Key facts about blocked driveways
- A homeowner has no special legal right to park directly outside their property. All road users have the same right to park anywhere on the public highway as long as they do not contravene parking restrictions.
- There is no time limit on how long a vehicle can remain parked in the same space on a road. The exception to this is if the vehicle is thought to have been abandoned, in which case it can be removed by the police.
- Trying to keep a parking space available outside your home using cones or some other obstacle could be viewed as obstruction and liable to prosecution – unless your local authority has granted you the right to do so for something like a funeral.
- If a vehicle is parked on your driveway without your permission, they would be trespassing. As trespass is a civil and not criminal offence the police will not always get involved. At most they may send an officer to try and determine the owner of the vehicle and ask them to move.
- If someone has parked on your driveway and you were to block them in, your vehicle may be causing an obstruction to the public highway and this is a criminal offence. So the owner of the vehicle could call the police on you.
- Vandalising a parked car is a criminal act and can be prosecuted. Even if just spraying chip fat on the windscreen or blocking the exhaust, these acts could still be classed as vandalism.