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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 70712
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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Hello, I am due in court on 24th April for speeding offence

Resolved Question:

Hello, I am due in court on 24th April for speeding offence – 51 in a 30 zone. I will be representing myself  and this is my first offence of any kind and I can only describe the incident as a momentary lapse of concentration which I deeply regret. The road was a dual carriageway with a 30mph limit indicated by spacing of lighting. Traffic was moderate, weather conditions were fine and dry, and visibility was clear. There were no parked cars and no pedestrians in sight I intend to plead guilty to the charge and understand that there is a 6 point and possible ban as a consequence. I wanted to present the following points in mitigation but am unsure of the best way to present these? 1 This is my first ever speeding offence 2 I am a cautious driver and have held a clean driving license for 24 years with no Accidents deemed as being my fault 3 I very much regret that this has happened and it has sincerely XXXXX XXXXX awareness of speed restrictions 4 Receiving a ban would have serious impact as I’m separated from my wife but actively share in taking my two children to school and several evening activities - dance and drama classes and community radio project. 5 I also travel to work daily by car and may risk losing my job if unable to get to the office (although I’m aware that this in itself would likely not be considered)


 


what is the best way to present a plea of mitigation and could there be anything that is commonly mentioned that I have overlooked?

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

Are you asking what sentencing he will get ?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes and also the best way to present the plea of mitigation in the best light to minimise points and hopefully avoid a ban

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

If this is 51 mph in a 30 mph zone then you are just into the highest sentencing bracket where the penalties would be 6 points or a ban of between 7 - 56 days. There will also be a fine of 125-175% of your weekly income and costs of £85 plus the victim surcharge of roughly £35.

Realistically, its going to be points. You are right at the bottom of the sentencing bracket and even allowing for the aggravation of this being a 30 mph zone and therefore generally containing vulnerable road users it still doesn't really justify an immediate ban.

You are basically addressing the mitigation correctly except point 4 possibly. With speeding offences usually it comes down to guilty plea, hitherto good record and remorse.

You should also, if true, mention the absence of heavy traffic, the shortness of any distance driven at speed and the clemency of the weather and clarity of visibility.

If you are going to mention the reduction in speed limits then you need to make clear that you do accept that the signs were adequate and you missed them. If you don't then they will say you are raising a defence and your guilty plea would be vacated and the matter set down for trial which you would almost certainly lose and costs ordered against you.

In relation to point 4 above, its a difficult point to make. The court will say that is not their concern because this is not an offence of totting and so exceptional hardship would not apply. For my own part, if I were mitigating the way I would phrase it is this. If the court takes the view that only a ban is appropriate then it would fall particularly onerously upon you for the reasons you mention and so it would act as a sentence in itself therefore the sum of the fine can be reduced to reflect that.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for your quick reply,


 


When I mentioned it was a dual carriageway with a 30 mph limit, it was not a temporary limit but the 30 mph sign is on an adjoining road (no 30mph signs on the dual carriageway I was on) However I do not want to say that I wasnt aware if the speed limit as I believe that could point towards 'lack of due care and attention' and I was aware that there is a 30 mph limit.


 


regarding point 4, would you recommend I still include this on the mitigation form and mention about possibly reducing the fine or would this look bad?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

If you are concerned about implying lack of due care then I would remove all reference to that. Its too close to raising a defence.

In relation to point 4, you can still raise it but just make sure you phrase it correctly.
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