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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 70520
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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I received a speeding penalty notice from Essex Police in early

Resolved Question:

I received a speeding penalty notice from Essex Police in early Feb requesting details of the driver of my car. I returned the notice as required giving my details. After a week I had had no response and looked out for the post every day, feeling quite anxious about the whole thing. Nothing. I went away for 3 days on the 9th April, returning on the Saturday to find an offer of reduced penalty notice and an awareness course etc if returned within 28 days. The letter is dated 28/02/2014, this was now the 12th April. The letter had been delayed in the system somewhere and was now beyond the 28days. I called the number given straight away to ask for advice, but it was only open during office hours. So called on the Monday. It was a menus system culminating in only being able to record a message and no option to speak to an operator . I left a message explaining all the above asking for advice. I got a call back a few hours later, but it went to voicemail straight away since caller ID was withheld and my phone is set to reject these. An officer (I'm guessing as no name given ) left a response that since I RECEIVED the offer on the 27/02/2014 and had not responded within the required time I would receive a summons ! I called back immediately explaining that my phone rejects caller ID withheld calls, saying that the officer had misunderstood my message, giving an alternative number that would accept ID withheld calls or to email me so I could respond. Now on the 26th April I have heard nothing since. To be honest I am anxious and also annoyed because I cannot speak to the police about it. Advice please.
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.

What would you like to know about this please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Will I have to attend court?
How do I ensure that I can still have the reduced offer ?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Thanks.

The short answer is that you cannot do that but there are options open to you.

The first thing to do is to write to them explaining the situation. They may well relent. You should also complete the forms immediately and send them back. The worst that will happen is that they will refuse.

If they do refuse then you can write to CPS asking them to review the public interest of the prosecution for the reasons above. Probably they would not back down at that stage.

The difficulty with this is that they only have six months to lay an information before the court and so the time limits have to be enforced quite strictly or that is jeopardised.

The fact of the postal delay is no defence. Its one of those cases where life is just not fair. It is a defence to failing to complete a NIP to say that you didn't get the forms but thats because its a statutory requirement under S172. This is just an offer by the police to deal with this matter administratively to reduce pressure on the courts.

They may actually forget to summons you. That does happen sometimes.

If they do summons you though, then you can plead by post and mitigiate on the basis above. Some courts will just give you 3 points and a fine of £85 and the surcharge of £15 so you are dealt with as though you have the fixed penalty anyway. That cannot be guaranteed obviously.

You would only get 3 points at court unless your speed was pretty high. The fines are higher though.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks jo

Clarifying you suggest writing the above to the court as representation if summonsed ?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
I'm not sure what you mean?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for the positive rating and remember that I am always available to help with your questions. For future information, please start your question with ‘FOR JO C’. You can also bookmark my profile http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-remus2004/
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