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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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In February this year I was fined for allowing the insurance

Customer Question

In February this year I was fined for allowing the insurance to lapse on my garaged motorcycle but still having road fund licence in place (fined under the Continuous Insurance Enforcement scheme). I paid the fine and sent the tax disc off to Swansea for a refund. I have now received a summons for again keeping the motorcycle taxed but uninsured in May of this year. On checking I realise I never received a refund for the returned tax disc - nor did I receive (bizarre but true) a fine notice for the second amount, which DVLA tell me they sent back in May. Sadly I have no proof of postage for the returned disc, only a scanned copy of the completed form, and DVLA have rejected my version of events. My question - can I be fined twice for the same offence?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is Alex and I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

What was the period for the first fine please? What is the period for the second one?

JACUSTOMER-pc91zs10- :

As I already said, the first fine was levied in February 2013 stating I was keeping an uninsured vehicle. This was paid. The second notice was allegedly sent in May 2013 again stating I was keeping an uninsured vehicle. I had already returned the tax disc for refund but DVLA say they have no record of this.

Alex Watts : When was it due to expire please?
JACUSTOMER-pc91zs10- :

The road fund licence was due to run to the end of July 2013. I have a scanned copy of the return form (V14) that I luckily took before I posted it to DVLA. I have also sent a copy of this to them with my not-guilty response.

Alex Watts : Were there two summons or was one fine from the dvla and one from the court?
JACUSTOMER-pc91zs10- :

In February I received a fixed penalty notice from DVLA which I reluctantly paid. The next I received was a summons from Swansea Magistrates Court for the offence. When I queried this with DVLA they said they had sent a second fixed penalty in May - this I never saw. If I had received it, of course, I would have queried it then since I had already returned the offending tax disc for refund. As I understand it, the summons is because I failed to pay the second fixed penalty notice.

Alex Watts : Indeed. You are quite right to plead not guilty. You can not be fined for the same offence twice, this would be an abuse of process. The fact you returned the disc and I assume SORN indicates that you had complied. Indeed the fact you have kept a copy of the tax disc indicates and supports this. You should go to court in the day to plead not guilty, explain the situation to the prosecutor and it may be that the matter coukd
Alex Watts : could be resolved there and then, you have some evidence with you.
Alex Watts : In any event I would expect the matter to be adjourned by the dvla to at lest make enquiries.
Alex Watts : But turn up to enter a plea, I realise this may be some distance but if you do not the court may not adjourn.
Alex Watts : If this answers your question could I invite you to rate my service which I hope has been excellent today, if you need more information or help then please click reply. Please remember that I am always happy to help if you have future questions, even if I am in Court I can normally respond within a few hours. For future information, please start them with ‘For Alex W’. Please bookmark my profile if you wish for future help: http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-alexwatts/
Alex Watts : Does this answer the question?

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