This article is brought to you by Kenway Miller Solicitors
The UK is fairly generous when it comes to going over the stated speed limit on any of its roads. Drivers are given an allowance of 10% over the limit, an extra 2mph for camera calibration errors. So if you’re in a 20mph zone, for example, you’ll be able to do 24mph without landing in hot water – 10% of 20mph the extra 2mph.
This generosity does have an end, though. As soon as you stray beyond this allowance, you’re at risk of being stopped and prosecuted. Those limits are there to keep other road users and pedestrians safe, and there are no reasonable excuses for breaking them.
You’ve made a mistake
It’s easy to creep over the limit and if you’ve been caught on the wrong side of it, you will, depending on the time of day, the area you were caught in and any previous record, face a fine and between three and six points on your licence. It’s possible for those three to six points to mean a ban if they take you over the 12-point totting-up scheme.
If you’re worried about losing your licence, then the first thing you should do is call someone like for help and advice. Losing your licence can be devastating to you and your family – you could lose your job, be less able to look after your family and you could also lose your reputation. You need professional, expert help under these circumstances, as you can’t – and shouldn’t – face them alone.
Get someone in your corner
Having a team of strong lawyers in your corner will help you to get the fairest penalty possible, given your circumstances. You could find you end up with fewer points, a smaller fine and, in more serious cases, retaining your licence.
If you are lucky, you may be eligible for an alternative penalty that doesn’t involve either points or a fine.
Raise your awareness
You can ask to be sent on a speed awareness course, especially if it’s your first speeding offence. The court will look kindly upon this; you have to foot the bill for the course yourself, but it often reduces your fine and your points.
Speed awareness courses are conducted across the country by different police authorities, and eligibility to take an awareness course instead of a fine will vary.
Be prepared for a post-car life
When you’re at risk of losing your licence, it’s a case of hoping for the best but preparing for the worst. Get yourself ready for a period of no driving – look at public transport, getting a lift into work with a workmate (offer to pay for petrol costs…) or even getting a bike. If you’re facing a long ban – over 12 months – then encourage your non-driving partner to learn (offer to pay for lessons). You can be reasonably certain that they won’t break the speed limit now…
Learn your lesson
Hopefully, no-one was hurt or worse as a result of your misjudgement, so you should take your speeding punishment as a lesson learned. What you shouldn’t do is hold a pity party or trot out silly excuses for your excessive speed. No-one likes a speeding driver – so win back some kudos and show everyone that you’re reformed.