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I have been issued an Unpaid Fare Notice; what happens now?

You will usually have 21 days in which to pay an Unpaid Fare Notice (UFN), but you should carefully check the wording on the notice to be sure.

You should be aware that the ‘clock does not stop ticking’ once an appeal has been lodged with the train operating company; the 21-day deadline to pay the fare applies from the point the UFN has been issued. If the 21-day deadline has passed and the debt has not been paid, the train operating company can begin an escalation process which is usually in the form of chase-up letters but each of these letters adds a further administration fee to the original debt for which you may still be liable to pay even if the appeal is successful.

If a debt remains unpaid the operator can pursue payment through the usual civil process for unpaid debts (e.g. a debt collection agency). This is a civil rather than a criminal law action but it can nonetheless affect the person’s credit rating and the operating company does have the option of reverting to a criminal prosecution for breach of byelaws.

If you are unhappy about how you are being treated by the train company and feel they have not listened to your reasons then please contact us as we may be able to help.


  • Train
  • Ticket inspection penalties


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