Most Common Motoring Offences in the UK
Lawyers who deal with all areas of criminal law often aren’t fully familiar with the perfect legal arguments that can be put forward on your behalf if you have been accused of any of the road traffic offences below;
Fail to nominate driver
When you commit an offence, you will receive an S172 driver information request.
Not completing the request carries six points.
S172(4) and S172(7)(b) Road Traffic Act 1988 or the road traffic act offer two statutory defences.
To satisfy the court, you need to show that you used reasonable diligence to ascertain the drivers identity, or that you have never received the s.172 info request.
Valid Car Insurance Motoring Offences
Regardless of the nature of your offence circumstances, if you are stopped by the police while driving without valid car insurance, you are assumed to be guilty. This is because driving with no insurance is referred to as a strict liability offence. Ask a no obligation question to the motor law specialists at pattersonlaw.co.uk and find out what your best defence options are free.
If convicted or you plead guilty you will receive 6 – 8 penalty points and your vehicle may be impounded and crushed.
Many people find that their insurance policy was cancelled without them knowing. If this is the case for you then there may be the possibility to defend your self.
If you can show you genuinely believed you had valid insurance, you can use a Special Reasons Argument.
Speed Limit Offences
Speeding carries 3 to 6 points or a discretionary ban, a fine and costs.
Following on from recent road traffic case law, if you are going to succeed defending your alleged speeding offence, you will need to have professional evidence to support your legal argument.
Drink Driving Offences
35mg is the maximum permitted alcohol breath reading for drink driving in the UK. If convicted, you face a mandatory minimum licence ban of one year.
The three defences for drink driving are that you were not the driver of the vehicle at the time, you were not driving in a public place, or that you didn’t drink alcohol until after you had finished driving.
The three other possible defences are that you drove only a short distance, that it was a life threatening emergency or that you were not aware that you had taken alcohol prior to driving.
Drunk in Charge Road Traffic Offences
The prosecution must prove to the court you were over the legal drink drive limit and in charge of the vehicle.
You have a defence if you can prove to the court you were not intending to drive until you were under the drink drive limit.
If found guilty of drunk in charge of a vehicle then you will receive 10 points and a possible driving ban.
For an offence to be committed, you must be holding your phone while using it.
Many Magistrates Courts often view this offence differently.
Stopping in a traffic jam or at traffic lights can still be classed as driving.
Driving Without Due Care and Attention
In order to convict you, the prosecution must prove beyond all reasonable doubt that the standard of your driving was below that expected of a competent and careful driver.
It covers many motoring offences from scrapes in car parks to undertaking on a motorway.
Instead of prosecution, and depending on your circumstances, the police may well offer you a Driver Improvement Course.
Fail to Stop and Report Driving offences
You are required to stop and offer your details following an accident if property, a person or another vehicle has been damaged. In accordance with Section 170 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.
Where it’s not possible to exchange details at the time, you must report the matter to a police officer as soon as you are reasonably able to do so and in less than 24 hours.
This offence carries five – ten points on your licence or a driving ban at the Magistrates discretion.
If you can demonstrate that you didn’t know that damage had been caused and that it was reasonable that you weren’t aware that you had had an accident then you have a defence.
For the most serious examples of both of these offences, you can be given community service or a prison term.
Dangerous Driving Offences
To be convicted for dangerous driving, the quality of your driving must fall beneath what is required, but also it should be clearly obvious to a careful and competent driver that the driving is dangerous.
If convicted of dangerous driving, you face a minimum 1 year driving ban, a re-test and even a prison term.
Driving With No Licence
Much confusion surrounds this road traffic offence.
An endorsable offence would be driving without using L plates, or not having passed a driving test prior to driving.
A non-endorsable offence would be if the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Agency instructed you to return your driving licence and they suspend your entitlement.
It is often linked to having no insurance, where it is suggested that no licence means that your car insurance is invalid. This is not the case.
Different Magistrates often get confused about whether this driving offence carries penalty points or not, so make certain that you seek expert motoring law advice if you are charged with this motoring offence.