Thursday 22 March 2018

Driver to challenge €13,000 bill over unpaid M50 tolls

Simon Parsons’ bid to avoid bill will be heard in September
Simon Parsons’ bid to avoid bill will be heard in September

A driver's challenge to a judgment that found him liable for €13,000 in unpaid M50 toll charges and led to his car being seized will be heard in September, a judge has ordered.

Simon Parsons, of New Haven Bay, Balbriggan, had been the subject of a Dublin District Court ruling in October 2016 after an action by the National Roads Authority (NRA).

He was not present to defend that case, leading to a judgment in default amounting to €13,208 and €1,004 in legal costs.

On December 6, 2016, his Opel Corsa was seized by the Dublin County Sheriff and sold weeks later to cover some of the money sought by the NRA.

The sheriff had thought he would get €5,000 for the car, but it was sold for €1,100. The involvement of the sheriff also operated as a loss for the NRA, the court heard.


The NRA's lawyer, Thomas Rice, told the court that Mr Parsons has a motion to set aside the civil judgment.

Mr Parsons claimed he needed his car to take his partner, who suffers from cerebral palsy, to medical appointments.

In an affidavit presented by his solicitor, Sean Foley, the court heard Mr Parsons suffered from depression and could not use a computer. A psychiatric report was given to the judge.

Mr Foley argued that the system discriminated against people with limited ability and that the NRA was profiteering by allowing charges to escalate.

Mr Parsons claimed he paid the tolls at a Topaz garage and had all his receipts for each time he used the M50 with its €3.10 charge.

Mr Rice said Mr Parsons had been served with a civil claim notice in July 2016 and that NRA footage showed he had not paid for 210 M50 trips.

Judge John Brennan said he was allowing Mr Parsons to produce his documentation.

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