Is It Possible To Avoid Paying Littering Fine?

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Janine Marsh
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Janine Marsh

Financial Expert

My name’s Janine, and I’m a mum of two who’s always been passionate about trying to cut down spending costs. I am now sharing as much financial knowledge as I possibly can to help your money go that little bit further.

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Updated 29 November 2023
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avoid paying littering fine appeal

Did you get a littering fine? And has it made you ask the question, ‘is it possible to avoid paying littering fine notices’? The answer is found in my post, so read on to find out more!

How to appeal and win

If you want to avoid paying a littering fine then you’ll need an airtight appeal.

The best way to perfect your appeal is getting a little advice from a Solicitor. I’d 100% recommend spending a fiver to get a trial of JustAnswer.

You can explain your situation in their chat and they’ll connect you with a Solicitor who can advise you and give you the best chance to win your appeal.

Click here to get the trial offer with JustAnswer.

But first, what constitutes littering?

Littering in the UK was made an offence back in 1990. Later, the Environmental Protection Act 1990 was revised. The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 was introduced and today councils and other authorities take littering very seriously!

The legal definition for ‘littering’ is someone who drops, deposits or throws litter in a public area.

The legislation covers the following:

  • A person who urinates in public
  • People who drop cigarette butts on the ground
  • Anyone who drops sweet wrappers or gum on the ground
  • People who drop fast food packaging, bags, and receipts on the ground
  • Anyone who drops apple cores, orange skins, or banana skins on the ground

Take a look at what happened to one unfortunate motorist who simply made a mistake which got them a littering fine.

Is It Possible To Avoid Paying Littering Fine?


It’s an offence to litter and if you do, you’ll get a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) for your troubles!

What kind of fine do you get for littering?

You’d get a Fixed Penalty Notice for littering which could be issued by several authorities. This includes local authorities, Environmental Enforcement Officers, Community Support Officers and the Police.

Moreover, certain councils around the country encourage people to report anyone who commits a littering offence!

Can you get out of a littering fine?

The only way you could get out of a littering fine is to win a court case! You could argue the following or just pay up and pay less:

  • Tell the court you can’t afford to pay the fine which may result in paying the FPN in instalments. Or if you’re lucky the fine could be cancelled but there’s no guarantee!
  • Take it on the chin and pay the fine within two weeks so you pay 50% less than the original fine

Can you beat your fine?

In many cases, littering fines aren’t actually enforceable.

It’s a bit sneaky, but you could pay £5 to chat with an online Solicitor.

They’ll give you support in crafting the best appeal possible and give you the best chance of not paying your littering fine.

You can try it below.


How do I get out of a Fixed Penalty Notice for littering?

As mentioned, the only real way to avoid paying a littering fine is to go to court and win the case. You’d need to present strong evidence that you didn’t litter to have the FPN quashed though!

You should seek the advice of a solicitor before deciding whether to face a court hearing. Why? Because you could be better off paying the fine within 14 days to pay the discounted amount.

It could save you time, money and stress!

What happens if you don’t pay a fine for dropping a cigarette?

You’d earn yourself a massive fine if you don’t pay an FPN for dropping cigarette butts on the ground!

I’ve listed how much an FPN for littering could cost you here.

Actual FPN for littering in the UK £150
When you pay within 14 days £75
When you don’t pay within 28 days £225
If you lose a court case for littering £2,500

Things quickly escalate when you don’t pay on time. In short, you have two choices when you get a Fixed Penalty Notice for littering. First, pay the fine and move on.

Second, opt to attend a court hearing to challenge the fine. There’s no other way to appeal an FPN because it’s up to the court to decide whether you pay or not!

Moreover, when you miss the 28-day deadline, the fine increases by 50%. In short, a £150 fine becomes one that sets you back £225!

You could end up with a CCJ recorded on your credit history. You’d find getting a loan, credit card, or mortgage hard or impossible to secure.

Over a million pieces of litter are dropped each day in the UK costing taxpayers over £1 billion every year.

What happens if I ignore an FPN?

You’ve got 28 days to respond to an FPN. You must provide all the information requested on the notice. If you fail to respond, you’d get a Charge Notice before things escalate to bailiffs showing up at your door!

Is putting a cigarette down a drain littering?

Yes. Putting a cigarette down a drain is littering. Moreover, this type of littering results in other problems like polluting waterways, the sea and blocking drains.

Can you appeal a fixed penalty notice?

The only way to appeal a Fixed Penalty Notice for littering is to attend a court hearing. There’s no other way because there isn’t a formal process to challenge an FPN!

Only a judge can decide whether the FPN should stand or not.

Is littering a criminal offence?

Yes. Littering in the UK is a crime even though a Fixed Penalty Notice falls under civil law.

Plus, when you provide false information to the issuer, you could face legal proceedings. It’s a criminal offence under the Environmental Protection Act of 1990 to provide incorrect information to an authority.

The police could be informed and you risk being arrested and prosecuted!

Should you pay a littering fine straight away?

You should pay a littering fine as soon as possible to avoid things from escalating. But only when you know you committed the offence! Plus, when you pay an FPN within 14 days, you pay the lesser amount!

The best way to settle the fine is to go online because most authorities have dedicated payment options on their websites! Some authorities let you pay an FPN over the phone so it’s worth checking the notice you got.

Lastly, is it possible to avoid paying littering fines?

The only way to avoid paying a notice for littering is to attend court. You’d need to provide a strong reason why the FPN should be cancelled. Even then, your appeal may not be successful and you’d have to pay.

On the other hand, you could opt to pay the fine within 14 days so you pay the lesser amount. Many people prefer to pay early to avoid all the hassle and worry of attending court which can be stressful to say the least.

Thanks for reading this post. I hope the information helps you decide how to deal with a Fixed Penalty Notice for littering!

Don’t submit your appeal yet.

The best way to beat a littering fine is to get professional advice.

For a £5 trial, you can have Solicitors from JustAnswer look at your case and help make your appeal airtight.

The authors
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My name’s Janine, and I’m a mum of two who’s always been passionate about trying to cut down spending costs. I am now sharing as much financial knowledge as I possibly can to help your money go that little bit further.
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