Jonathan Morrissey
Consultant Solicitor and Head of Crime, Motoring Matters & Inquests
Make an enquiry
Date Published:27 Jan 2017 Last Updated:22 Jul 2021

More severe penalties for speeding offences

Crime

We have all heard in the press recently that the Government are aiming to make penalties for Speeding Offences more severe.

There is at the moment, no clear guidance on how this is to be achieved, but here are a few pointers.

Magistrates Courts currently have guidelines that they use to sentence people which are all highly reliant on the speed limit for any particular road in comparison to the speed travelled.

At the moment the number of Penalty Points being awarded for speeding varies from three to six, with the possibility of being disqualified for travelling at grossly excessive speeds.

As many will know, achieving twelve points will result in an obligatory disqualification for a minimum of six months unless you are able to establish exceptional circumstances, an area in which of course we specialise.

In the future we anticipate one or all of the following:

  • Lowering the speeds at which fixed penalties are no longer available.
  • Lowering the speeds at which the Court will impose a disqualification.
  • Increasing the number of points available for offences to beyond six.
  • Decreasing the number of points allowable before mandatory disqualification to below twelve, for instance ten.

The obvious result of the intention to change the law in this respect is clearly going to be an acceleration of the rate at which motorists obtain twelve (or ten) points and therefore qualify for six months disqualification. This is extremely worrying as we can foresee a major increase in the number of motorists who may face life changing decisions being made in the Magistrates Court.

The repercussions for fully qualified drivers are you will be closer to possible disqualification. For Learner or Probationary drivers, it means a possible immediate revocation of your licence. If you are ever in danger of accumulating twelve points you should always seek our legal advice.

A further word of caution is that many prosecutions of this nature are being dealt with by the newly introduced Single Justice Procedure. Allowing the Court to use this procedure is NOT beneficial to Clients interests and should be objected to in all cases.

Please be advised you should NEVER answer correspondence from the Courts or the Police without first taking or advice. We are here and happy to help.