Skip to main content

Motoring offences

Motoring Offences

The firm has extensive experience and expertise in defending clients who face allegations in relation to all types of motoring offences, including:

  • Speeding
  • Drink or Drug Driving
  • Careless or Dangerous Driving

We understand that for many clients their driving licence is vitally important and central to them maintaining their livelihood. Over the years, our team has successfully assisted many clients in defending cases and/or avoiding a driving disqualification.

With all motoring offences, it is important to take legal advice at an early stage. We are able to advise on procedural issues, whether there are any grounds to contest matters and all potential defences. We can offer fixed fee consultations.

Please contact one of our team to discuss your case and arrange a preliminary fixed fee consultation. At the consultation we will advise you on the court process, talk through the relevant practical and legal issues and set out your options with clarity. The consultation will help you understand your position and allow you to make an informed decision about what action to take.  We will provide you with details of our fee structure.


Speeding is an offence under the Road Traffic Regulations Act 1984. It is unlawful for a person to drive a motor vehicle on a restricted road at a speed exceeding the prescribed limit.

What happens if I am caught speeding?

Usually the first stage of a prosecution for Speeding is to receive a Notice of Intended Prosecution or Section 172 Notice in the post. It is important to take legal advice even at this early stage as failing to respond adequately or at all can have important consequences.

Depending on how a defendant responds to the Notice of Intended Prosecution, it is possible the police may offer a Speed Awareness course and/or a Fixed Penalty Notice, depending on the speed involved and the client’s personal circumstances.

Alternatively, a defendant may receive a Single Justice Procedure Notice in the post. This is a lengthier document which requires the recipient to enter a plea and give details of their potential defence or mitigating circumstances. The way a defendant responds to this form can have significant effect on the overall outcome of the case and it is extremely important that legal advice is taken at this stage, if it has not been already.

What happens if I am at risk of disqualification?

The Court has the power to disqualify you from driving for a single speeding offence or in circumstances where you already have points on your licence.

In such circumstances, you should seek our help to persuade the Court not to exercise its discretion not to disqualify, or alternatively to disqualify for a much shorter period.

What happens if I have 12 points on my licence? Am I a “Totter”?

Drivers who will be in receipt of 12 or more penalty points fall to be disqualified from driving for a minimum period of six months under the “totting-up” provisions.

It is possible to avoid this happening depending on your circumstances or the circumstances of the offence. Most frequently this can be done by raising an “Exceptional Hardship” argument with the Court.

“Exceptional Hardship” arguments require careful and detailed preparation, and it is often necessary to gather and collate supporting documents and evidence. It is also important to have a skilled advocate in Court to advance your case. We have extensive experience in preparing “Exceptional Hardship” arguments, guiding our clients through the process and successfully presenting them in Court.

Drink and Drug Driving

Drink Driving – It is an offence under section 5(1)(a) Road Traffic Act 1988 for a person to drive or attempt to drive a motor vehicle on a road or public place with excess alcohol in their breath, blood or urine.

Drunk in Charge – It is an offence under section 5(1)(b) of the Act for a person to be in charge of a motor vehicle on a road or public place with excess alcohol in his breath, blood or urine.

Drug Driving – It is an offence under section 5A(1)(a) of the Act for a person to drive or attempt to drive a motor vehicle on a road or public place  when the level of a specified drug exceeds the prescribed limit.

We advise and represent clients facing drink or drug driving charges. This can be a very technical area of law and we are well placed to advise you given our team’s experience and knowledge developed over many years.

Excellent legal advice and representation is very important as there can be a risk of very lengthy periods of disqualification and even imprisonment in the more serious cases.

We have detailed experience of challenging the accuracy of prosecution evidence in this field and frequently work with leading scientists in defending these cases.

In cases where there is no defence available or a guilty plea is advised, we are skilled in preparing mitigation and presenting our client’s cases that the Court is persuaded to impose lenient sentences and keep can periods of disqualification to a minimum.

Special Reasons

In some situations, it is possible to persuade the Court that due to the circumstances in which you found yourself driving when under the influence of alcohol or drugs, a period of disqualification should not be imposed. These are known as “Special Reasons”.

Careless Driving and Dangerous Driving

Dangerous Driving – Section 2A(1) of the Road Traffic Act 1988 provides that a person is to be regarded as driving dangerously if:

  • the way he drives falls far below what would be expected of a competent and careful driver, and
  • it would be obvious to a competent and careful driver that driving in that way would be dangerous.

Careless Driving – Section 3ZA of the Act provides that a person is to be regarded as driving without due care and attention if the way he drives falls below what would be expected of a careful and competent driver.

If the police are investigating an allegation of careless driving or dangerous driving, you may be requested to attend the Police Station for an interview. This will be an interview under caution and the strategy for dealing with the interview may have a big impact on how the matter progresses and even to the overall outcome of the case. It is therefore very important to seek legal advice if such a request is made by the police and to be legally represented at the interview.

We can also advise if you have received a Single Justice Procedure Notice or a summons to attend Court.

Driving with no insurance

Section 143 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 provides that a person must not use a motor vehicle on a road or public place unless there is in force in relation to the use of the vehicle by that person a policy of insurance

Driving without insurance carries a fine and a minimum of six penalty points.

In some cases, even when it turns out that there is not valid policy of insurance in place, it is possible to avoid penalty points being imposed by raising a “Special Reason” (to which see above).

DVLA Appeals

We can advise and assist in the event that the DVLA has revoked your driving licence, for example due to alleged medical grounds.

We can advise on how to appeal such a decision, and guide you through what supporting medical evidence may be needed. Some Appeals are heard in the Magistrates’ Court and we can represent you at these hearings.

Contact us to arrange a fixed fee consultation

Consultations take place in our London offices or by Zoom/Teams/telephone.

To request a consultation please send us an email, complete our online enquiry form or call us on 020 7183 8950.  If emailing or using the online form, please provide a short outline of your situation.

Information about our costs can be found here.