Millars Solicitors are experts in defending motorists in a range of motoring law cases and appealing against driving convictions. They can help ensure that you defend your case in the strongest possible way and help you retain your licence even if you have reached 12 points within three years.
They are experienced in advising and representing professional people ranging from sports stars to area managers and company directors. Their expertise and knowledge in motoring law cases means that they can be called upon to give you the best advice, to appear in court if you’ve received a summons, or to appeal a decision that the courts have already made, even if it was made in your absence.
Whenever you call Millars Solicitors about your case, you will only ever deal with a solicitor that specialises in motoring law.
Millars Solicitors not only offer experience and tenacious representation for those people facing road traffic offences, but they also provide absolute discretion to all of their clients. Having worked with professionals and company directors from high profile industries, and prestigious jobs, they understand the importance of keeping the case as private as possible and dealing with all matters discretely.
In most cases, you have the right to appeal a conviction made by UK courts, and this is certainly the case if you have been found guilty of a motoring offence. Whether you believe that you received poor quality legal representation during the first case, you represented yourself, or there was a genuine reason that you were unaware of the hearing in the first place, it may be possible to have your conviction cancelled or the case re-opened.
Dangerous driving is the most serious type of road offence that a driver can commit, apart from those that involve accidents and fatalities. As such, it has the highest maximum penalties, and being found guilty of a dangerous driving offence not only means that you stand to lose your licence but you could face a custodial sentence, considerable financial fine, and have to take an extensive re-test when you come to try and get your licence back.
There are a number of offences that might fall under the category of drink driving offences, including driving while under the influence of excessive alcohol and failing to provide a specimen. While the latter doesn’t necessarily mean that you were definitely over the limit, the courts will typically treat it with the same level of potential penalty, in a bid to try and prevent drivers from using this as a ploy to get out of drink driving offences.
In order to be convicted of driving without due care and attention, the prosecution must be able to show that your driving fell below the standards reasonably expected of a competent driver, and that you knew that your driving was below this standard. Even the most experienced and careful of driver can suffer a momentary lapse of concentration. In most cases, this may mean straying into another lane, or overshooting a junction, and hopefully with no detrimental effects.
It is a legal requirement to ensure that you are adequately insured whenever you drive a car on the road or other public area. A failure to do this could result in the issuance of a Fixed Penalty Notice or a summons to appear in court, and can carry a penalty of between 6 and 8 penalty points as well as a fine of up to £5,000. In the most serious cases, the court may disqualify you from driving, and while driving without insurance is a strict liability offence, you may be able to claim special reasons so that you would be found guilty of the offence but would not receive the usual penalty and fine.
New drug driving laws have been introduced in the UK, although it has long been an offence to drive while under the influence of drugs. New laws introduced in March 2015, along with the introduction of roadside testing equipment, means that drivers can be asked to provide a specimen of saliva or sweat at the roadside, and can then be taken in to the police station for further testing if certain levels of any of eight drugs are found in the driver’s system.
Disqualification from driving is seen as a severe penalty, and is typically only handed down to those that commit the most serious offences, or that repeatedly commit lesser offences. While it may be possible for a solicitor to argue that you would suffer exceptional hardship by having your licence taken from you, there is still the chance that you will be disqualified. However, if your circumstances have changed, you meet certain stipulations and criteria, and the courts agree, then it may be possible for you to have your licence returned, and your disqualification completed, sooner than originally set out.
Failing to furnish driver details when requested to by the police could mean that a relatively simple speeding fine and associated penalty points could quickly double and become a major problem for some drivers. This offence has seen some media coverage, as many drivers have attempted, successfully in some historical cases, to say that they did not know who exactly was driving at the time of an alleged incident.
When the police suspect that a person is guilty of driving while under the influence of alcohol, they will request that the driver give a sample. Typically, this will initially be a sample of breath, unless they do not have breathalyser equipment, but it is down to the police to determine whether they want a specimen of breath, urine, or blood.
If you have been involved in an accident while driving, you are legally required to ensure that the incident is reported to the police, if you do not exchange details including your name and address with the other party while at the scene. Ideally, you should report the accident straight away, and in person at the police station, but it should be reported within 24 hours in any case. Failing to report an accident is an offence, and one that can carry up to ten penalty points, although there are defences that can help gain an acquittal or mitigate the sentence so that you receive fewer penalty points and a lesser fine.
When involved in any accident, it is the responsibility of the driver to stop and provide details to any other party involved in the accident. Failing to stop and provide details is considered a serious offence, and the alleged offender faces up to 10 penalty points on their licence, as well as a fine of up to £5,000. Although a prison sentence may be given, this is typically only reserved for the most serious offences, and those cases where the offender is found guilty of additional crimes.
It is against the law to use a handheld mobile phone while driving. Not only is it illegal to talk on the phone without using a headset or hands free kit of some sort, but it is illegal to text, use social media, or perform any task that requires interaction with the device. What’s more, all mobile devices are covered, so this includes but is not limited to mp3 players, tablet computers, and smartphones.
Special reasons exist for many driving offences, and although they are different to claiming exceptional hardship, they can help you to avoid disqualification and fines despite the fact that you will still be found guilty of the offence. For example, if your drink was spiked and this led to you being arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol, then you could still be charged and found guilty of drink driving, but the court may determine that you should be allowed to keep your licence.
Speeding is the most common driving offence, and depending on how much you were speeding by, as well as any other circumstances surrounding the alleged offence, it can carry penalties ranging from three points and a £60 fine to a disqualification for dangerous driving. While most speeding cases are dealt with by way of a Fixed Penalty Notice, it is your prerogative to ignore the FPN and go to court, and in cases where the addition of three points is not an option or because you are accused of speeding excessively, it may be necessary for the case to go to court anyway.
Taxis, in their various guises, are licensed vehicles, and there are strict laws that govern the ways in which these vehicles can be used, and in which they must be maintained and kept. For example, if you do not have a valid taxi permit, but are found to have taken payment from passengers in your vehicle, then you could face prosecution. Illegally touting for business will usually only carry a financial penalty, but it also means that insurance policies may be invalidated, and this means that the CPS may choose to prosecute you for driving without a valid insurance policy; something which carries the potential of a significant fine, penalty points on your licence, and even the possibility of being disqualified from driving.
Current laws dictate that if you amass 12 penalty points on your licence over a period of three years, then you should be subjected to an automatic disqualification. This disqualification can last for a period of six months up to several years, depending on whether you have been disqualified before and, if so, how long ago it occurred. Despite the fact that penalty points only accumulate for three years, and can be removed from your licence after four years, insurance companies can ask for details of offences committed over the past five years.
Contacting Millars Solicitors
Getting in contact with Millars Solicitors is really simple. You can call on 0800 999 5535 or you can send a confidential email by clicking here. Please remember that we provide a FREE initial telephone conference with every enquiry.