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nuts32
Hi New here and would like some advice / help please. I was caught (followed by unmarked car) doing 103mph on the M6 toll road last August. I have just received a postal requisition with an additional sheet requesting me to make a plea on line,
highlighting a 33% discount on my fine. Circumstances surrounding the time. My mother in law had a stroke 4 days earlier and was in Warrington Hospital, we live in Bournemouth. We had travelled up to Warrington on the Thursday, back to
Bournemouth Friday, she took a turn for the worse Saturday so back to Warrington Saturday, spent Saturday night, Sunday and Sunday night at the Hospital, albeit I did sleep Sunday night at a local B&B, sadly she passed away Monday morning.
My daughter had travelled up on the Sunday, so we had two cars in Warrington, my wife decided to travel with our daughter and I drove my car with my son. As you can imagine my head was elsewhere and whilst I was aware of the road, my speed
concentration had lapsed.

At the time I had a 3 point NIP pending which I now have, other than that no points less than 3 years old.

I am a company director and responsible for 50% of the sales of the company, we have 13 employees who rely on my sales which involves considerable driving. I am aware that at this speed a ban is likely. Do I...

1. Plead guilty on Line along with well written mitigating circumstances?
2. Plead guilty by post along with well written mitigating circumstances?
3. Plead guilty by means of 1 or 2 above but attend court on the hearing date?

The paperwork also states that the hearing will take place on the date enclosed 31/05/16 if they intend to disqualify me they will advise on a date I need to attend court.

I have a holiday booked 20/05/16 - 27/05/16 for which I need my driving license am I able to carry out the options above but not send my license until I return from Holiday?

Any help / advice would be appreciated.

Many Thanks
BaggieBoy
What you written above is not mitigation, quite the opposite, if your head was elsewhere the court may take the view you shouldn't have been driving.

Mitigation would be good weather, light traffic conditions etc.

Personally I would go with a postal guilty plea, but there is a high likelihood they will adjourn and request your presence.
nuts32
QUOTE (BaggieBoy @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:09) *
What you written above is not mitigation, quite the opposite, if your head was elsewhere the court may take the view you shouldn't have been driving.

Mitigation would be good weather, light traffic conditions etc.

Personally I would go with a postal guilty plea, but there is a high likelihood they will adjourn and request your presence.



Ok thanks for that, it just so happens it was good weather and light traffic. I have read a few views where some say an early postal plea is best and others saying I should attend court with a solicitor, if I attend with a solicitor, the
cost is more than I would pay for a driver if I was banned for 28 days.
southpaw82
Not much point in a solicitor for a guilty plea, as you rightly worked out.
nuts32
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:26) *
Not much point in a solicitor for a guilty plea, as you rightly worked out.



The solicitors advice is that if he attends then he would plead my case in order to reduce any possible ban and end up with a fine and points. Do you think the chances are the same whether we attend or I just do it by post/online?

Thanks
Logician
As above, what you have written may explain the offence to some extent but does not mitigate it, and you would be better not to say it. For 103 in a 70 limit the most likely outcome is 6 points, which would put you on 9 and liable to a 6 month disqualification for any further transgression, speed, mobile phone, red light or whatever. This may well be thought to be more likely to concentrate your mind than the alternative of a very short ban. Bearing in mind any ban would be short, a matter of a couple of weeks perhaps, the court would probably consider that it would have little or no effect on your company or put anyone else's job at risk.

You are entitled to a full discount off the fine for a plea at the earliest opportunity which is at or before the first hearing, there is no advantage to you in pleading any earlier and despite the tone of the letter you do not have to. As you need your licence until the 27th May I would do nothing in advance. Then, as there is a risk of disqualification, either:
a) If you want a period after your return from holiday when you can drive, plead by post, using assured next day delivery on 28th May. The likely result is an adjournment for at least some weeks and a request for you to attend in person at that date.
b) If you want this out of the way, attend on the 31st May without pleading in advance. Any ban will start immediately, so you will have a continuous period of not driving after your holiday, if you should be banned.
Jlc
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:31) *
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:26) *
Not much point in a solicitor for a guilty plea, as you rightly worked out.



The solicitors advice is that if he attends then he would plead my case in order to reduce any possible ban and end up with a fine and points. Do you think the chances are the same whether we attend or I just do it by post/online?

The sentencing guidelines are fairly closely followed - the solicitor could influence them from ban to points but it is just as likely you can do the same just as long as you are contrite and do not mention the aggravating factors.

Of course some will swear the solicitor was a life saver but a lot depends on how comfortable you feel about presenting your own case. Some would argue this would come best from you anyway... Of course the question to look out for is that if your licence is so important then why risk it? (As noted mentioning the unfortunate circumstances could go against you so stick to a momentary lapse in concentration and major on the dry/quiet and impact on the company)
nuts32
QUOTE (Logician @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:38) *
As above, what you have written may explain the offence to some extent but does not mitigate it, and you would be better not to say it. For 103 in a 70 limit the most likely outcome is 6 points, which would put you on 9 and liable to a 6 month disqualification for any further transgression, speed, mobile phone, red light or whatever. This may well be thought to be more likely to concentrate your mind than the alternative of a very short ban. Bearing in mind any ban would be short, a matter of a couple of weeks perhaps, the court would probably consider that it would have little or no effect on your company or put anyone else's job at risk.

You are entitled to a full discount off the fine for a plea at the earliest opportunity which is at or before the first hearing, there is no advantage to you in pleading any earlier and despite the tone of the letter you do not have to. As you need your licence until the 27th May I would do nothing in advance. Then, as there is a risk of disqualification, either:
a) If you want a period after your return from holiday when you can drive, plead by post, using assured next day delivery on 28th May. The likely result is an adjournment for at least some weeks and a request for you to attend in person at that date.
b) If you want this out of the way, attend on the 31st May without pleading in advance. Any ban will start immediately, so you will have a continuous period of not driving after your holiday, if you should be banned.



Thanks for this, very helpful. The emphasis is for me to plead online and it states 'any time up to the day before the court makes a decision' so does this count as an early plea? The way everything is worded is in such a way that I should plead on line now, which is quite daunting.

Thanks

QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:46) *
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:31) *
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 17:26) *
Not much point in a solicitor for a guilty plea, as you rightly worked out.



The solicitors advice is that if he attends then he would plead my case in order to reduce any possible ban and end up with a fine and points. Do you think the chances are the same whether we attend or I just do it by post/online?

The sentencing guidelines are fairly closely followed - the solicitor could influence them from ban to points but it is just as likely you can do the same just as long as you are contrite and do not mention the aggravating factors.

Of course some will swear the solicitor was a life saver but a lot depends on how comfortable you feel about presenting your own case. Some would argue this would come best from you anyway... Of course the question to look out for is that if your licence is so important then why risk it? (As noted mentioning the unfortunate circumstances could go against you so stick to a momentary lapse in concentration and major on the dry/quiet and impact on the company)



Thanks I agree and now I think about it you are right the circumstances would dictate I shouldn't have been driving in the first place
southpaw82
You get the 1/3 discount whether you plead guilty on line or on the day of your first appearance at court.
kezzy
Gentlemen, I take my hat off to you, the advice given was 100%, a solicitor could not give better advice. Nuts, don't bother with a solicitor these guys are tops. You can sort this yourself, and I think Logicians thread was just perfect for you. The best of luck to on the day matey.
nuts32
QUOTE (kezzy @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 19:15) *
Gentlemen, I take my hat off to you, the advice given was 100%, a solicitor could not give better advice. Nuts, don't bother with a solicitor these guys are tops. You can sort this yourself, and I think Logicians thread was just perfect for you. The best of luck to on the day matey.


Thanks and yes thanks guys I think I will take Logicans advice and plead guilty either by post or on line the day before the case is heard. I have found some legal type sites that offer to write your mitigating circumstances in the right way, is this worth doing or not?

Thanks
Jlc
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 20:03) *
I have found some legal type sites that offer to write your mitigating circumstances in the right way, is this worth doing or not?

Depends on how deep your pockets are frankly...

Whilst it's a big deal to you the bench see hundreds of these cases and you'll be 'processed' quicker than you expect. Brevity is the key and remaining contrite.

Have a look at the site's letters for starters... here.
Logician
To be frank there is little you can say in these circumstances and a lengthy screed which amounts to very little is merely irritating. The guidelines tend to be followed closely and the most important thing is to make clear there was nothing aggravating. If you were facing a 6 months' ban it would be rather different and for example an explanation of how your employees' jobs depend on you generating sales which can only practically be achieved by driving to customers would be important. I would say something like "It was a clear bright day with little traffic on the motorway and unfortunately I allowed my speed to build up, for which I can only apologise."
Taff In Notts
Nuts32,

I was in a similar situation to you last year, got caught at 66 in a 40. My mother had been seriously ill in S. Wales for about three months before the incident and I had been travelling down to S. Wales almost every weekend during that time. On two occasions her condition was critical and I was advised to get down there ASAP. By the time I eventually went to court my mother had passed away. I pleaded guilty and in my mitigating statement I simply stated that it was a momentary lapse of concentration and then explained what I had been through in the months prior to the incident.

However, before going to court, I arranged and took a Driving Safely and Speed Awareness Course with a private company and I got a written report from them to present in court so that I could show the magistrates that I was trying to do something to improve my driving standards. I think the written report helped quite a bit and they reduced my fine by the cost of the course. I was also asked if I would prefer a short ban but, as that didn't suit my circumstances at the time, I got six points instead.
If you have the time it might be worth considering something like this.

Good luck anyway.

Taff
nuts32
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 20:15) *
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 20:03) *
I have found some legal type sites that offer to write your mitigating circumstances in the right way, is this worth doing or not?

Depends on how deep your pockets are frankly...

Whilst it's a big deal to you the bench see hundreds of these cases and you'll be 'processed' quicker than you expect. Brevity is the key and remaining contrite.

Have a look at the site's letters for starters... here.


Thanks for this and the link very useful

QUOTE (Logician @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 20:45) *
To be frank there is little you can say in these circumstances and a lengthy screed which amounts to very little is merely irritating. The guidelines tend to be followed closely and the most important thing is to make clear there was nothing aggravating. If you were facing a 6 months' ban it would be rather different and for example an explanation of how your employees' jobs depend on you generating sales which can only practically be achieved by driving to customers would be important. I would say something like "It was a clear bright day with little traffic on the motorway and unfortunately I allowed my speed to build up, for which I can only apologise."



Thanks Logican much appreciated

QUOTE (Taff In Notts @ Mon, 29 Feb 2016 - 20:59) *
Nuts32,

I was in a similar situation to you last year, got caught at 66 in a 40. My mother had been seriously ill in S. Wales for about three months before the incident and I had been travelling down to S. Wales almost every weekend during that time. On two occasions her condition was critical and I was advised to get down there ASAP. By the time I eventually went to court my mother had passed away. I pleaded guilty and in my mitigating statement I simply stated that it was a momentary lapse of concentration and then explained what I had been through in the months prior to the incident.

However, before going to court, I arranged and took a Driving Safely and Speed Awareness Course with a private company and I got a written report from them to present in court so that I could show the magistrates that I was trying to do something to improve my driving standards. I think the written report helped quite a bit and they reduced my fine by the cost of the course. I was also asked if I would prefer a short ban but, as that didn't suit my circumstances at the time, I got six points instead.
If you have the time it might be worth considering something like this.

Good luck anyway.



Taff


Thanks Taff
nuts32
Ok so it now gets worse!!

Court date is 31/05/16, I get home tonight to the receipt of a NIP! 37 in a 30 up in Newcastle. So with the 3 points I already have, plus the potential 6 or a ban and now another 3 putting me at least on a 12 point totting up ban. I now have a bit of a dilemma as best case I can respond to the NIP accordingly and pray for a driver awareness course and then continue with my original plan of pleading guilty to big offence myself along with mitigating circumstances, this will then result in either 6 points giving me 9 in total or a 7 to 56 day ban. Alternatively I get 3 points for this latest one with the potential of 12 in total following the court case, do I now involve a solicitor, to help me avoid a totting up ban? Obviously I would wait and see what the outcome of the latest one is before doing that, I assume this would be resolved if I respond straight away before my court case. No points at all for years and now potentially 12 inside 12 months!
Jlc
That speed should see a course offer of you haven't done one in the last 3 years.

In terms of a solicitor for an exceptional hardship plea that is up to you. Personally I think it comes best from the individual but for starters the hardship should be beyond what is reasonably foreseeable. (The impact on others carries more weight)
nuts32
QUOTE (Jlc @ Wed, 30 Mar 2016 - 22:25) *
That speed should see a course offer of you haven't done one in the last 3 years.

In terms of a solicitor for an exceptional hardship plea that is up to you. Personally I think it comes best from the individual but for starters the hardship should be beyond what is reasonably foreseeable. (The impact on others carries more weight)



Ok yes that's what I am hoping for and then happy to continue dealing with the big one myself. Impact on others though is significant as if I lost my license for anymore than 14 days it would effect at least 5 or 6 employees.
Thanks
Jlc
If you do get the course you still have 2 years to avoid any points whatsoever...

The bench would need to be convinced the impact to the employees is unavoidable. Alternative means of transport may need to be considered (even if it's at cost to you for example).
peterguk
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Wed, 30 Mar 2016 - 22:40) *
if I lost my license for anymore than 14 days it would effect at least 5 or 6 employees.


Out of interest, and since the court will undoubtedly want to know, how and why would you not being able to drive affect those employees?
Logician
Provided you have not done a course in the last three years, there is no reason you should not be offered a course, that and the speed are the only criteria, other points on your licence are not relevant, but of course there is no right to receive a course. You need to think carefully about your driving habits and perhaps get a sat-nav that indicates the limit for the road you are on, although they are not infallible. That has been the saving of my ex, who is currently on 9 points.
nuts32
QUOTE (peterguk @ Wed, 30 Mar 2016 - 23:11) *
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Wed, 30 Mar 2016 - 22:40) *
if I lost my license for anymore than 14 days it would effect at least 5 or 6 employees.


Out of interest, and since the court will undoubtedly want to know, how and why would you not being able to drive affect those employees?



Sure, I am responsible for 60% of the business income, this comes as a direct result of my sales which involves visiting customers all over the UK and covering approx 30,000 miles a year. The business is currently very fragile and is a reactive sales and service business meaning our order book is only ever a few weeks in advance.

QUOTE (Logician @ Thu, 31 Mar 2016 - 00:27) *
Provided you have not done a course in the last three years, there is no reason you should not be offered a course, that and the speed are the only criteria, other points on your licence are not relevant, but of course there is no right to receive a course. You need to think carefully about your driving habits and perhaps get a sat-nav that indicates the limit for the road you are on, although they are not infallible. That has been the saving of my ex, who is currently on 9 points.



Sure the ironic thing is I already have this built in and it's even worse as it has traffic sign recognition, with adaptive speed control which I use all the time now, well obviously not ALL the time otherwise I wouldn't be here! Yesterday I am on the M3 in the roadworks with average speed cameras and I am sat at 50mph cruise control on and quite happy until some idiot starts hurling abuse due to my speed holding him up!! I am damm sure he isn't going to take my points for me.
Gan
Rear window sticker ?

http://stokesayware.com/9pointspleasepass.htm
peterguk
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Thu, 31 Mar 2016 - 06:05) *
I am on the M3 in the roadworks with average speed cameras and I am sat at 50mph cruise control on and quite happy until some idiot starts hurling abuse due to my speed holding him up!


So? Daily occurrence these days. Just ignore.
Jlc
Driving at the limit can actually be quite stressful indeed. There's always someone behind you that doesn't think the limit applies to them...
nuts32
Hi Guys,

Thought I would come back here and update you all, as I read somewhere that not many do. First of all thanks everyone for the sound advice, for anyone new reading this take the advice of the guys on here.

The outcome of the last NIP 37 in a 30 was an offering of a course which I happily took and attended prior to my court case on 31/05.

The big one 103 on the M6, I decided to plea on line but was also going to attend until the reply web page came back instructing me not to attend court on that day. Few days later I get the letter confirming adjournment and requesting my attendance (today) now bare in mind I have done a lot of research including taking advice from a solicitor who wanted to charge me thousands to attend court. I decided against this and took the advice from you guys and went on my own.
They were running late so were rushing each next case into court before the end of the previous one so got to witness a young lady with 4 offences inside a month!
Anyway I gave my account of the events, the situation (rather than mitigation) leading up to the offence and my current situation and how losing my license would impact on my business and employees.

Lots of whispering later ......... 6 points and including costs a fine of £603.00

So thanks again, I hope I am never back, but even push bikes are getting clocked these days!!!

laugh.gif
Bipolar
Good result, well done and thank you for updating us.

You can't get done for speeding on a pushbike (no speedo), only for "wanton and furious driving" of a carriage under the Offences Against the Person Act 1861.

So if you're on a pushbike and you see a camera van make sure you have a placid expression on your face although remember they can catch your furious expression up to 1km away. By the time you see them they may well already have "pinged" you and be quaking in their van at your wanton and furious expression!
southpaw82
QUOTE (Bipolar @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:21) *
You can't get done for speeding on a pushbike (no speedo)

Right answer, wrong reason. Lack of a speedometer is no defence. The reason is that speeding offences only apply to motor vehicles.
nuts32
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:26) *
QUOTE (Bipolar @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:21) *
You can't get done for speeding on a pushbike (no speedo)

Right answer, wrong reason. Lack of a speedometer is no defence. The reason is that speeding offences only apply to motor vehicles.



No problem , what have I started now? rolleyes.gif
southpaw82
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:46) *
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:26) *
QUOTE (Bipolar @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:21) *
You can't get done for speeding on a pushbike (no speedo)

Right answer, wrong reason. Lack of a speedometer is no defence. The reason is that speeding offences only apply to motor vehicles.



No problem , what have I started now? rolleyes.gif

Nothing, so far as I'm aware. It's a relatively common misconception that bicycles are exempt from speed limits because they have no speedometer. This occasionally leads to people thinking they can "get away" with speeding because their car has a faulty speedometer. Neither premise is true. What is true is that bicycles are normally exempt from speed limits, for the reason I gave above.
666
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 21:40) *
QUOTE (nuts32 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:46) *
QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:26) *
QUOTE (Bipolar @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 18:21) *
You can't get done for speeding on a pushbike (no speedo)

Right answer, wrong reason. Lack of a speedometer is no defence. The reason is that speeding offences only apply to motor vehicles.



No problem , what have I started now? rolleyes.gif

Nothing, so far as I'm aware. It's a relatively common misconception that bicycles are exempt from speed limits because they have no speedometer. This occasionally leads to people thinking they can "get away" with speeding because their car has a faulty speedometer. Neither premise is true. What is true is that bicycles are normally exempt from speed limits, for the reason I gave above.


Indeed. An exception is the Royal Parks in London, where the speed limit does apply to cyclists. There have been a number of successful prosecutions recently for speeding in Richmond Park, e.g. 41 in a 20 limit.
southpaw82
QUOTE (666 @ Tue, 7 Jun 2016 - 22:11) *
Indeed. An exception is the Royal Parks in London, where the speed limit does apply to cyclists. There have been a number of successful prosecutions recently for speeding in Richmond Park, e.g. 41 in a 20 limit.

Just what I had in mind. The reason being, of course, that the parks are regulated by bye-laws made under legislation that allows for the regulation of all traffic, not just motor vehicles.
Bipolar
I am suitably corrected (though pleased I won't be prosecuted for speeding unless I cycle quite a long way).
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