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S172 notice for careless driving but no NIP, Threads merged
Seaview
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:24
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Hello forum,
I would very much appreciate some advice as were a bit in shock right now. What fantastic place this is, I really wish I had found this forum earlier as I have already emailed the email address on the s172 notice which I now realise was naïve.

The facts are as follows:
- My partner has received an S172 request for information to identify the driver from Northumbria Police force regarding a report of alleged careless driving
- A very specific time and location was included using whatthreewords which is on the main road just about 100 metres from the entrance to our street.
- The notice was issued by the “Fixed penalty unit”
- No NIP was included
- No mention of evidence was included, it only states that the alleged offence was reported.
- The alleged offence was committed on the 07/11/20 and the s172 letter is dated 25/11/20.

Our observations so far are:
- Only myself and my partner have access to the car. We do not recall the offence and are shocked at the notice.
- My partners car is a very small, slow, basic car which we don't/cant drive fast although I appreciate that any car can be driven carelessly given the right circumstances. There are no red lights or crossing on the stretch of road and we never use mobile phones. We really can’t understand what it might be in connection with.
- The time and location are very specific; my partners phone GPS says we were out walking at the time although it is very close to the time we arrived back at the house so the time of the offence may be inaccurate or we simply mat .

I have already sent the following email in response:

Dear Sir/Madam
I write to you regarding a s172 notice recently received in connection with an alleged offence involving a vehicle for which I am the registered keeper:------
I would first like to point out that I believe that the notice I have received is defective. The alleged offence is stated as taking place on the 07/11/2020. As the notice was not issued until the 25/11/2020, it was not served within the required 14-day period. I suggest that this alone should bring an end to the matter.
None of the people who have lawful access to the car can recall any actions which fit the description of the alleged offence and due to the time that has passed, it is not immediately obvious who, if anyone, may have been driving at the time of the alleged offence. Analysis of bank statements and social media show that around the period of the alleged offence, the two people who have lawful access to the car were most likely to have been out walking in the local area with the vehicle parked up at home.
If you still wish to continue the matter despite the defective notice, I kindly request that I am provided evidence upon which the alleged offence is based so I may try to assist further.
Kind Regards”

This is causing us a great deal of stress and worry so any help would be appreciated. I’d like some advice on how much worse I’ve made it by sending my ill-informed email and what I should do next.

Many thanks in advance

Seaview

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post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:24
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Gerfc1
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:30
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It is NIP that you got.

In any way you must respond otherwise a 6 penalty points and a big fine also MS90 code could be put on insurance.

You can request them to provide photograph to help to idenfity the driver, do not ask for evidence at this time as it is a different matter.
You can tell them that it arrives after the 14 days limit as long your partner is named in the V5C logbook.
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cp8759
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:43
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If you are 100% certain that at 14:43 the car was parked and nobody was driving, you can reply saying exactly that, i.e. that nobody was driving the car and therefore you cannot name the driver (Note: by "you" I mean the recipient of the notice).

Note the 14 day time limit does not apply in some circumstances, such as if there was a collision (no matter how minor).


--------------------
I am not on the "motorists's side", nor am I on the "police/CPS/council's" side, I am simply in favour of the rule of law.
Section 6 of the Interpretation Act 1978 applies to everything I post as it would apply to an Act of Parliament.
No, I am not a lawyer.
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Seaview
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:50
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Many thanks for the quick response Gerfc.

I did not realise that it was a NIP as it didn't use those words. Sorry for the confusing thread title.

We don't want to open up another can of worms for failing to respond so will request photographic information to help identify the drive then respond ASAP. The good news is that my partner is the registered keeper so it looks like the 14 day time limit argument could work.

My follow-up question is; how do I introduce the 14 day limit argument, do I write a covering letter when I return the s172? or do I wait until they try to issue the penalty?

Thanks again


QUOTE (cp8759 @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:43) *
If you are 100% certain that at 14:43 the car was parked and nobody was driving, you can reply saying exactly that, i.e. that nobody was driving the car and therefore you cannot name the driver (Note: by "you" I mean the recipient of the notice).

Note the 14 day time limit does not apply in some circumstances, such as if there was a collision (no matter how minor).


I cant be 100% certain, my partners phone GPS shows we were walking until 15:01. I not 100% convinced its accurate and can tell the difference between a walk and a very slow drive.

I will asks for photographic evidence to try and identify the driver, that should help us understand if there is evidence the car was actually on the road and what the reason for the alleged offence is. If we have had a minor collision that we haven't noticed it would actually be a relief. Do the police not have to explain the circumstances of the allegation?

thanks


This post has been edited by Seaview: Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:52
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The Rookie
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:51
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Why would there be any photographs?

And ask for 'photos' not evidence.

No they don't have to describe the circumstances.

This post has been edited by The Rookie: Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:52


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Jlc
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:23
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QUOTE (Seaview @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:24) *
I’d like some advice on how much worse I’ve made it by sending my ill-informed email and what I should do next.

A s172 request is not bound by the 14 day requirement.

It could be a report by a 'member of the public' where the time may not be 100%. Possibly dashcam?

Alternatively, it could be a plate misread.

This post has been edited by Jlc: Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:32


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information, SAR=Subject Access Request

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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Jlc
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:35
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QUOTE (Seaview @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:50) *
Do the police not have to explain the circumstances of the allegation?

At this stage they are requesting just the driver name for an alleged incident - at the time and place given.

However, they may provide additional information to assist.


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information, SAR=Subject Access Request

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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Seaview
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:39
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Good point. Trying to look at things clearly, there is nothing to suggest they do have any photo's or video evidence. However, as the whole thing is a mystery, my anxiety is causing me to run a million scenarios through my head of what might have happened and I am jumping to assumptions because of it.

Without photo or video assistance, we are not likely to be able to determine who was driving or if indeed anyone was driving. That leaves us basically having to nominate one of us to proceed to the next stage or run the risk of the points and fine as advised by Gerfc.

Thanks so much for your helpful and objective responses.

Kind Regards

Seaview
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Logician
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:59
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QUOTE
- A very specific time and location was included using whatthreewords which is on the main road just about 100 metres from the entrance to our street.


Could it be that a member of the public driving along the main road considers that your partner's car came out of your road in front of him, causing him to brake heavily, does that ring any sort of bell?


--------------------



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Seaview
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:59
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OK, quite an big progress update. Just spoke to a very helpful lady in the fixed penalty notice department.

- The alleged offence is passing too close to a cyclist
- They have video footage and accompanying statement
- We now know who the drive is at the time.

She stated that as no FIP has been issued yet so it still stands as there is no time limitation on the s172 - is this correct?

Thanks

Seaview
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666
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 13:10
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QUOTE (Seaview @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:59) *
OK, quite an big progress update. Just spoke to a very helpful lady in the fixed penalty notice department.

- The alleged offence is passing too close to a cyclist
- They have video footage and accompanying statement
- We now know who the drive is at the time.

She stated that as no FIP has been issued yet so it still stands as there is no time limitation on the s172 - is this correct?

Thanks

Seaview

Yes, there is no time limit on a s172 request. Your partner must reply within the stated timescale.
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Jlc
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 13:19
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QUOTE (Seaview @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 12:39) *
That leaves us basically having to nominate one of us to proceed to the next stage or run the risk of the points and fine as advised by Gerfc.

Not that it applies now but there is a statutory defence (which may or may not succeed) - you are not 'forced' to name a driver per se.

This post has been edited by Jlc: Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 13:20


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information, SAR=Subject Access Request

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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andy_foster
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 20:56
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QUOTE (Gerfc1 @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:30) *
It is NIP that you got.


On what do you base this assertion?


--------------------
Andy

"Whatever the intention of Parliament was, or was not, the law is quite clear." - The Rookie
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cp8759
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 21:29
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QUOTE (andy_foster @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 20:56) *
QUOTE (Gerfc1 @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 11:30) *
It is NIP that you got.


On what do you base this assertion?

I was wondering that. It looks to me like a letter that merely states that there has been an allegation, and imposes a requirement to name the driver. There is no mention of any intention to take proceedings against anyone. OK maybe the implication is clear, but does an implied warning satisfy s1 RTOA?


--------------------
I am not on the "motorists's side", nor am I on the "police/CPS/council's" side, I am simply in favour of the rule of law.
Section 6 of the Interpretation Act 1978 applies to everything I post as it would apply to an Act of Parliament.
No, I am not a lawyer.
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andy_foster
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 21:39
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QUOTE (cp8759 @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 21:29) *
OK maybe the implication is clear, but does an implied warning satisfy s1 RTOA?


IMHO, absolutely not. Whilst the required details such as time and place are 'merely directory', the requirement for a warning is mandatory.


--------------------
Andy

"Whatever the intention of Parliament was, or was not, the law is quite clear." - The Rookie
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cp8759
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 22:13
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QUOTE (andy_foster @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 21:39) *
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 21:29) *
OK maybe the implication is clear, but does an implied warning satisfy s1 RTOA?


IMHO, absolutely not. Whilst the required details such as time and place are 'merely directory', the requirement for a warning is mandatory.

I'm inclined to agree, in which case the right approach would be to name the driver, but then decline any offers of courses or FPNs & plead not guilty in court on the basis that no NIP has ever been served. Of course, don't send anything before 14 days from the date of the offence have elapsed (but don't miss the 28 days either).


--------------------
I am not on the "motorists's side", nor am I on the "police/CPS/council's" side, I am simply in favour of the rule of law.
Section 6 of the Interpretation Act 1978 applies to everything I post as it would apply to an Act of Parliament.
No, I am not a lawyer.
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The Rookie
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 22:13
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I agree, while it alleges an offence there is absolutely no hint of a warning that it may result in a prosecution.


--------------------
There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

S172's
Rookies 1-0 Kent

Council PCN's
Rookies 1-0 Warwick
Rookies 1-0 Birmingham

PPC PCN's
Rookies 10-0 PPC's
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Logician
post Fri, 27 Nov 2020 - 23:59
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I agree, provided that there is no other wording which the OP has not copied that warns of prosecution.


--------------------



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Seaview
post Sat, 28 Nov 2020 - 03:52
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Hello everyone,, some further helpful responses thanks. I only cropped the addresses from the top of the letter - their address is “The fixed penalty unit”. On the other side is just a form to name who was driving. Does the fact this came from the fixed penalty unit help in any way?

Trying to get the arguments right: The letter was issued 16 days days after the alleged offence. If they now serve a nip on the driver, it is now impossible to serve within the 14 days. If they argue that this letter was the nip, then it’s still outside the 14 days. I don't see how there is any possible way to issue a valid nip?


Thanks

This post has been edited by Seaview: Sat, 28 Nov 2020 - 05:05
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andy_foster
post Sat, 28 Nov 2020 - 07:29
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It is clearly not a valid NIP (for the purposes of s. 1 RTOA 1988). The fact that it came from the FPU is neither here nor there, other than that FPUs tend to have procedures in place to ensure compliance, as opposed to random PCs muddling their way through a process they aren't familiar with.

However, as the OP has managed to avoid providing us with the information that the NIP Wizard would have outputted (if the OP treated the s. 172 notice as a NIP, otherwise the Wizard would have stalled at the question "Have you received a NIP?"), there are still a number of unanswered and unasked questions.

Please visit the READ ME FIRST section (Click Here), answer all the questions in the NIP Wizard (including the detailed questions reached by clicking on the Additional Questions button on the second page), and the Wizard will then post its output back here to enable us to help you.

If the OP is not the RK, then as long as a NIP was served on the RK within the 14 days, the fact that no such notice was served on the OP is technically irrelevant (although it is unheard of for an SPU to send a NIP/s. 172 to the RK and solely an s. 172 to the nominated driver/keeper.

If the incident in question involved an RTA, there is no requirement for a NIP (although if the driver was unaware of any RTA, that exception would not apply).

If the details of the driver and RK could not be ascertained with reasonable diligence in time to serve a NIP within the 14 days, there is no requirement to serve a NIP. The diligence in question is generally considered to apply to the police, but it would seem somewhat perverse if an aggrieved party (the cyclist) could deprive the other party (the OP) of their right to a prompt warning of intended prosecution by delaying reporting their allegation to the police.


--------------------
Andy

"Whatever the intention of Parliament was, or was not, the law is quite clear." - The Rookie
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