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asrman
Hi all,

Looking for some outside opinion on my case which is as follows:

4 April 2016 was going a bit quicker than normal on a 40 mph dual carriageway. I would say my speed was probably between 60mph and 70mph so clearly well over the limit. I undertook a car and then merged back into the over taking lane and at that point noticed that the white BMW behind me who had been trying to keep up for a short while turned on his blue police lights and I pulled over. I offered no explanations for the my driving and of course admitted the offence in full seeing as though he was right behind me and saw everything. The police officer advised that the offence would not be dealt with by way of fixed penalty but I would receive a letter outlining my options which may include compulsory attendance at court. I said ok and I went on my way.

I did not receive anything in the post in the next two weeks and moved address permanently. Fast forward to September 2016 and I had forgotten all about it but returned to my old address to collect the post and discovered two letters. Now the first letter which was dated 20 April (or thereabouts I no longer have the letter which I will explain below), was a police letter and stated the offence which occurred on 4 April and the offence is driving without due care attention, and that I have a few options. Those options being speed awareness course or 3 points and £60.00 fine. The letter clearly stated that a reply was required within 28 days or else the letter would no longer be valid. Of course, due to the fact I had changed address but not updated my DVLA address details I did not receive notice of this letter so was unable to reply within that time period. Rang the police and they confirmed the same that the letter no longer applies.

Now the second letter which I opened at my old address in September 2016 was a court summons for 11 November, for the exact same offence, and I presume they decided to summons me to court because I had not replied to the police letter back in April 2016. The offence was the same, same date and I decided to plead guilty by post. The police mans statement was attached and he stated that I was travelling in excess of 80mph in a 40mph which I think is slightly exaggerated but none the less I accepted the statement and explained in the mitigation section that the reason why I did not reply earlier was because of a change of address and had I received the letter I would have accepted the speed awareness course. Sent the letter off together with the initial letter dated April 2016 as evidence. I also wrote my new address clearly in the court summons letter so that any replies would be received by me at my current address.

Now fast forward again today I returned to my old address to receive any post and opened a court letter dated 11 November 2016. First thoughts are why have they sent it to the wrong address when I have already told them I am no longer living there when I pleaded guilty by post. Now this letter states that the court hearing had to be adjourned because the seriousness of the offence now means that the court are considering disqualifying me from driving and I must attend on 6 December or else I will be disqualified or arrested! Now this seems like a drastic change from the original fine which was speed awareness or 3 points and £60.00 for the exact same offence the only thing being that I have failed to reply on time to these correspondence because of a change of address.

I can only think that they have not actually received my guilty by post letter or else they would have sent this to the correct address or alternatively the court have decided that because I accepted the policemans statement where he says I was travelling 80mph in a 40mph zone this warrants consideration of a ban. I think it seems a bit unfair considering that had I not moved address then I would have been booked onto a speed awareness course back in April but because of this change of address im now looking at the possibility of being disqualified.

One last things, the police officer at the time of the offence stated that I had 9 points on my license which I knew was not correct because the last points I received were back in 2012 when I got 6 points from a mobile speed camera. This is shown on my paper counter part license and also confirmed when checked online on GOV.org website I currently have zero points. So im not sure if the court is mixed up slightly with how many points I actually have.

Would much appreciate your views on this matter.
Cheers
andy_foster
You would not get an SAC for more than 53 in a 40 limit or a fixed penalty for more than 65 in a 40 limit. The sentencing guidelines (7-56 day ban or 6 points) only go up to 75 in a 40 limit. For 80 you would be be very unlikely to avoid a ban.

If you enter a straight guilty plea, you plead guilty to the offence (exceeding the speed limit) and admit the facts stated in the statement of facts. If you wish to dispute the facts, you need to say so when you enter a plea.
ford poplar
You were pulled over in Apr, NIP'd & told to expect Court Summons for Careless Driving (Police have 6 months to lay info)
Yet you failed to amend V5c or set up a mail re-direct when you moved house. Court papers will normally be sent to the orig V5c address provided as a matter of course. 1 reason to set up a
mail redirect if moving.
So who is unreasonable here you or or Court?
Court requires you attendance as a ban may be considered, prob towards upper limit for the offence or a totting ban if you then exceed 12 Penaty points. If you plead Guilty you cannot contest the facts, only provide 'mitigation'. IMO.

You are charged with 'Due Care', a more serious charge than just excess speed.

So why did you undertake a vehicle then move into overtaking lane?
sgtdixie
Did you tell the officer who stopped you that you were about to move, or was the move totally unexpected?

The state of your licence now re endorsements is irrelevant. What was the date of the previous offence?
Jlc
It would be extremely unusual to offer a course or fixed penalty at that alleged excess/circumstances. However, if they did offer (it would have been £100, not £60) then you could ask the court to consider administrative difficulties:

QUOTE
where a penalty notice was not offered or taken up for reasons unconnected with the offence
itself, such as administrative difficulties, the starting point should be a fine equivalent to the
amount of the penalty and no order of costs should be imposed. The offender should not be
disadvantaged by the unavailability of the penalty notice in these circumstances


...but it's an extremely long shot (as you appear to have contributed to the failure to receive it but strictly it is unconnected with the offence itself). But it seems they are not pursuing the speed itself but driving with due care and attention which is 3-9 points and the speed would be an aggravating factor. It think you'd be looking at somewhere around 5-7 points, a fine around 1 to 1.5 times your weekly relevant earnings, costs of £85 and surcharge of 10% of the fine (min £30). You get a 33% on the fine for a guilty plea. A disqualification can be also be considered for more serious offences.

QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 21 Nov 2016 - 23:39) *
I can only think that they have not actually received my guilty by post letter or else they would have sent this to the correct address or alternatively the court have decided that because I accepted the policemans statement where he says I was travelling 80mph in a 40mph zone this warrants consideration of a ban.

Probably the latter.
asrman
QUOTE (andy_foster @ Tue, 22 Nov 2016 - 02:47) *
You would not get an SAC for more than 53 in a 40 limit or a fixed penalty for more than 65 in a 40 limit. The sentencing guidelines (7-56 day ban or 6 points) only go up to 75 in a 40 limit. For 80 you would be be very unlikely to avoid a ban.

If you enter a straight guilty plea, you plead guilty to the offence (exceeding the speed limit) and admit the facts stated in the statement of facts. If you wish to dispute the facts, you need to say so when you enter a plea.


I have just picked up the letters I sent to the court and the letter received 20 April 2016 clearly states I have two options, first being a SAC, second being 3 points and £100.00 fine. I understand that 30mph over the the limit is generally a ban therefore I can only assume that the first letter sent was some kind of administrative error on behalf of the police.

QUOTE (ford poplar @ Tue, 22 Nov 2016 - 03:58) *
You were pulled over in Apr, NIP'd & told to expect Court Summons for Careless Driving (Police have 6 months to lay info)
Yet you failed to amend V5c or set up a mail re-direct when you moved house. Court papers will normally be sent to the orig V5c address provided as a matter of course. 1 reason to set up a
mail redirect if moving.
So who is unreasonable here you or or Court?
Court requires you attendance as a ban may be considered, prob towards upper limit for the offence or a totting ban if you then exceed 12 Penaty points. If you plead Guilty you cannot contest the facts, only provide 'mitigation'. IMO.

You are charged with 'Due Care', a more serious charge than just excess speed.

So why did you undertake a vehicle then move into overtaking lane?


I agree it was my mistake for sending off my drivers license details to the court without first updating my details on the DVLA as that is the reason why correspondence had been getting sent to the wrong address. I just picked up my drivers license and other letters up from the court this morning and have updated my address details with the DVLA but obviously its too late at this point as the new license will take two weeks to arrive.

Just looking over my drivers license again I can see that I currently have zero active points on my license and this is confirmed through the Gov website also. The only issue is that at the time of the offence on 10 April I still had 6 points in force from a speeding fine that took place in late 2012 although the date of conviction was 23 April 2013.

Although the officer did not give me any points at the side of the road in April 2016 I was wondering whether the fact that I had 6 points at the time of the offence will count towards totting up?

The undertaking was a stupid move it was a lapse in judgement and I was in a hurry to get back and the vehicle travelling in the overtaking lane was going below the limit. No excuses for poor driving and quite honestly I was not looking at my speedo so I could not tell you what speed I was going I was focused on the road. The reason why I accepted the officers version of events is because I did not want him to attend court as then it is effectively my word against his.

QUOTE (sgtdixie @ Tue, 22 Nov 2016 - 08:06) *
Did you tell the officer who stopped you that you were about to move, or was the move totally unexpected?

The state of your licence now re endorsements is irrelevant. What was the date of the previous offence?


I did not tell the officer about the move as I had already moved at that point. The issue was that I forgot to inform the DVLA about change of address so the police tickets went to my old address.

Date of the previous offence was 11 October 2012 however date of conviction was 23 April 2013 and I received 6 points via mobile speed camera.

QUOTE (Jlc @ Tue, 22 Nov 2016 - 09:21) *
It would be extremely unusual to offer a course or fixed penalty at that alleged excess/circumstances. However, if they did offer (it would have been £100, not £60) then you could ask the court to consider administrative difficulties:

QUOTE
where a penalty notice was not offered or taken up for reasons unconnected with the offence
itself, such as administrative difficulties, the starting point should be a fine equivalent to the
amount of the penalty and no order of costs should be imposed. The offender should not be
disadvantaged by the unavailability of the penalty notice in these circumstances


...but it's an extremely long shot (as you appear to have contributed to the failure to receive it but strictly it is unconnected with the offence itself). But it seems they are not pursuing the speed itself but driving with due care and attention which is 3-9 points and the speed would be an aggravating factor. It think you'd be looking at somewhere around 5-7 points, a fine around 1 to 1.5 times your weekly relevant earnings, costs of £85 and surcharge of 10% of the fine (min £30). You get a 33% on the fine for a guilty plea. A disqualification can be also be considered for more serious offences.

QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 21 Nov 2016 - 23:39) *
I can only think that they have not actually received my guilty by post letter or else they would have sent this to the correct address or alternatively the court have decided that because I accepted the policemans statement where he says I was travelling 80mph in a 40mph zone this warrants consideration of a ban.

Probably the latter.


I agree the option of SAC is very strange given that according to the officers statement I was doing in excess of 80 in a 40. Nonetheless it was offered and I have the police ticket letter out in front of me together with the second option for 3 points and £100. I agree they do not seem to be pursuing the speed separately as there is only one charge on the court letter however I understand the speed will be an aggravating factor for the driving without due care.

At this point the only things going in my favour are that I did in fact receive a letter in April offering options as to SAC or points which I could not accept due to change of address. The failure to change address was entirely my fault nonetheless had I done so I would have accepted one of those options. The second being that I currently have zero active points on my license and no points were issued roadside however I am wary that the courts may still take into account points that were active at the time of the offence.

If anyone could confirm the latter would be much appreciated
Jlc
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:17) *
If anyone could confirm the latter would be much appreciated

Totting is 12 points, based upon a 3 year rolling period with the offence date being the all important date. (Later conviction at court being irrelevant)
asrman
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:55) *
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:17) *
If anyone could confirm the latter would be much appreciated

Totting is 12 points, based upon a 3 year rolling period with the offence date being the all important date. (Later conviction at court being irrelevant)


So if I were to receive 6 points at court tomorrow would I have accumulated a total of 12 points even though the 6 points currently on my license are no longer active?
Jlc
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 16:19) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:55) *
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:17) *
If anyone could confirm the latter would be much appreciated

Totting is 12 points, based upon a 3 year rolling period with the offence date being the all important date. (Later conviction at court being irrelevant)


So if I were to receive 6 points at court tomorrow would I have accumulated a total of 12 points even though the 6 points currently on my license are no longer active?

If they were 'active' at the date of this latest offence, yes.

If so, you need to prepare and exceptional hardship plea.
asrman
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 16:23) *
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 16:19) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:55) *
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:17) *
If anyone could confirm the latter would be much appreciated

Totting is 12 points, based upon a 3 year rolling period with the offence date being the all important date. (Later conviction at court being irrelevant)


So if I were to receive 6 points at court tomorrow would I have accumulated a total of 12 points even though the 6 points currently on my license are no longer active?

If they were 'active' at the date of this latest offence, yes.

If so, you need to prepare and exceptional hardship plea.


Oh dear. Yes the date of the current offence was 10 April 2016 and the date of conviction (not offence) for my previous 6 points was 23 April 2013. So it seems like I have lucked out slightly here :/

Is accumulating 12 points an automatic 6 month ban or is the length discretionary? Any guesstimates on what I am looking at here based on previous cases - would it be out of the question for them to offer me 5 points in order to avoid a ban?

Jlc
QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 16:37) *
Oh dear. Yes the date of the current offence was 10 April 2016 and the date of conviction (not offence) for my previous 6 points was 23 April 2013. So it seems like I have lucked out slightly here :/

Is accumulating 12 points an automatic 6 month ban or is the length discretionary? Any guesstimates on what I am looking at here based on previous cases - would it be out of the question for them to offer me 5 points in order to avoid a ban?

You need the date of offence for your previous points... (If it was before 10 April then you may have 'lucked in')

A totting ban is generally 6 months but can be reduced, potentially to none, with a successful exceptional hardship plea. (With the impact on others carrying more weight)

5 points is possible but that excess alone is going to make that difficult.
sgtdixie
QUOTE
QUOTE (sgtdixie @ Tue, 22 Nov 2016 - 08:06) *
Did you tell the officer who stopped you that you were about to move, or was the move totally unexpected?

The state of your licence now re endorsements is irrelevant. What was the date of the previous offence?

I did not tell the officer about the move as I had already moved at that point. The issue was that I forgot to inform the DVLA about change of address so the police tickets went to my old address.


What address did you give the officer. All the paperwork will go to the address you have given not where licence or vehicles are recorded
Jlc
...but there is still that guidance for a fixed penalty equivalent sentence for administrative difficulties. It seems it may apply...
sgtdixie
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 17:12) *
...but there is still that guidance for a fixed penalty equivalent sentence for administrative difficulties. It seems it may apply...

Not if he gave the wrong address.
fedup2
QUOTE (sgtdixie @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 17:34) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 17:12) *
...but there is still that guidance for a fixed penalty equivalent sentence for administrative difficulties. It seems it may apply...

Not if he gave the wrong address.


Knowingly giving a wrong address AND not updating DVLA could well come across as a tactic to avoid the situation.
Jlc
Indeed, only if the issue was purely 'administrative'....
southpaw82
QUOTE (Jlc @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 18:02) *
Indeed, only if the issue was purely 'administrative'....

That's not what the Sentencing Guidelines say though

QUOTE
where a penalty notice could not be offered or taken up for reasons unconnected with the offence itself, such as administrative difficulties outside the control of the offender, the starting point should be a fine equivalent to the amount of the penalty and no order of costs should be imposed. The offender should not be disadvantaged by the unavailability of the penalty notice in these circumstances.


My emphasis added. People need to get away from the idea that it's only administrative difficulties that will trigger the guidance, it's not. Nevertheless, it is still within the court's discretion.
peterguk
So did you move after you were stopped as you say here:

QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 21 Nov 2016 - 23:39) *
I did not receive anything in the post in the next two weeks and moved address permanently.


Or had you moved before you were stopped, as you say here:

QUOTE (asrman @ Mon, 5 Dec 2016 - 15:17) *
I did not tell the officer about the move as I had already moved at that point.
Jlc
Yes, noted. In the context of these circumstance I think the 'administrative' angle would be the only circumstances they would even entertain (subject to the above clarifications).
asrman
Hi all

Just come out of court. Got off with 6 points and £200 fine. The fact that I had zero active points certainly weighed in my favour. Thanks all for input.
Jlc
so the offences were more than 3 years apart?
The Rookie
QUOTE (Jlc @ Tue, 6 Dec 2016 - 14:08) *
so the offences were more than 4 years apart?

FTFY
Jlc
QUOTE (The Rookie @ Tue, 6 Dec 2016 - 13:27) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Tue, 6 Dec 2016 - 14:08) *
so the offences were more than 4 years apart?

FTFY

I was referring to the totting period - but had missed the OP had confirmed it was outwith already. But, yes, also outside the 4 years too.
MFM
So since there is no law making it illegal to undertake, why has he been charged with due care and not just speeding alone?
samthecat
QUOTE (MFM @ Wed, 7 Dec 2016 - 10:11) *
So since there is no law making it illegal to undertake, why has he been charged with due care and not just speeding alone?


Have a read of: http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/p_to_r/road_tr...ad_driving/#a30

In a nutshell this paragraph taken from the link explains why:

"There are decided cases that provide some guidance as to the driving that courts will regard as careless or inconsiderate and the following examples are typical of what we are likely to regard as careless driving:

overtaking on the inside;
driving inappropriately close to another vehicle;
inadvertently driving through a red light;
emerging from a side road into the path of another vehicle;
tuning a car radio; when the driver was avoidably distracted by this action;
using a hand-held mobile phone or other hand-held electronic equipment when the driver was avoidably distracted by that use (note that this is an offence itself under Regulation 110 of the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) (Amendment) (No. 4) Regulations 2003). If this is the only relevant aspect of the case it is more appropriate to use the specific offence;
selecting and lighting a cigarette or similar when the driver was avoidably distracted by that use."
Jlc
QUOTE (MFM @ Wed, 7 Dec 2016 - 10:11) *
So since there is no law making it illegal to undertake, why has he been charged with due care and not just speeding alone?

It's contextual - the undertake may not be the action of a careful and competent driver.

Careless can be a bit of 'catch all' and excessive speed aggravates.
sgtdixie
Careless is normally used where there are multiple elements to an offence. This clearly fits the criteria by the OP's own account.
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