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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 70648
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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Hi, I failed to change address on my log book when I moved

Customer Question

Hi,
I failed to change address on my log book when I moved and therefore did not receive the speeding notices from the police demanding me to identity driver of the vehicle. Now I got a court case as I am appealing against a ms90 conviction , Failing to declare the identity of the driver. Even though is my responsibility to change address I did not get the speeding notices, so is there any good defence for this case?

thank you
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is Jo and I will try to help with this.

How did the failure come about please?

Was the offence definitely after the transfer?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I moved around nov 2012, the offence occurred in jun 2013. The offence was speeding on an average speed check camera and they sent the notices to my old address. I had a lot going on in my life as my wife just had our first child and I failed to change the address on my log book. I did not receive anything from the police or the courts. I only found out about this when the court issued a warrant against me in dec 2013. I have since been to the courts and my warrant has been quashed and they set a new trial date for the offence of failing to identify the driver of the vehicle. I had not intentionally ignored the letters I just simply did not receive the notices. What will be the sensible plea for me? and is there any way I can plead not guilty and have a defence ?


 


Thank you

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Were you the driver and were you speeding?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes I was the driver and they were saying I was speeding

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Do you deny speeding?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

no, i may well have been. but the trial is for failing to declare the driver

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

You are probably charged with speeding in the alternative. Is that not what they've done here?

Can you check the summons sheet?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

no im charged with failing to report the driver of the vechicle

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Thanks.

Its surprising they haven't charged you with the alternative. Its probably just human error.

Anyway, all that means is that you cannot now resolve this by offering a plea to speeding alone. The only charge is failing to identify.

This is a really difficult situation. The truth is that it comes down to a division between theory and practice.

In theory, you are guilty. There's no way around it. You didn't identify. I realise that was because you didn't get the S172 form but the reason you didn't is that you didn't update the DVLA of the change and there is clear case law to the effect that is not a defence.

However, the practical reality is that the Magistrates probably would find a way around this. You will need to go to court and give evidence and you can only tell the truth obviously. You will need to be reasonably credible obviously. If they don't believe that you didn't get the forms then its game over. However, if they accept that you didn't get the forms then that is a defence.

The leading case says that a person who is away should keep tabs on their post at home. That has generally been interpreted to mean that any person who doesn't get his post is guilty if they haven't received it as a result of their inattention. However, the case doesn't quite say that and I don't think I've ever seen a Bench convict a person in those circumstances and I used to prosecute road traffic all the time at the Magistrates Court.
Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.

Jo