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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71154
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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on the 3-5-2014 I was stopped by the police for no insurance

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on the 3-5-2014 I was stopped by the police for no insurance and my date of birth was entered wrongly on the form the officer gave me. Because my driving record is exemplary and completely free from any convictions the officer said that I will get 6 points and A £300 fine or an awareness course and should take the course. He suggested that I take the course.
When the official form came to me it stated that I an getting 6 points and £300 fine and no mention of the course.In addition they stated on the form that the offence date was on the 2nd May which was a different date on the form that the officer gave me as well as he put down my wrong date of birth. I am a Member of the Institute of advanced Motorists and have been driving since the mid 60s and have a completely clean license.
I have the opportunity to go to court your advice please. Can I claim that the offence is squashed on a technicality?

Michael Belson(NNN) NNN-NNNN4909 07956 242622

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

Were you insured at the time of being stopped please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I did not have insurance and the genuine reason as that I filed some papers and scooped up the reminder with these papers and due to work completely forgot to renew. In all my 50 years of motoring I have never gone without insurance ,mot or tax. and have no convictions of any motoring offence.


Sorry if I'm missing the point but what course was offered? I've never heard of one for no insurance.

It should be a special reasons argument if anything.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ho Jo


The officer that took the initial details said that as well as the fine etc I could be offered an awareness course and It would be cheaper and I would not get any points.I was delt with 2 officers one was PC RYAN I think that this is the one that said the course was available .

The other officer was PC WEAVER No 70454 this happened at Stansted airport .

Jo I swear this the truth.


Thank you for your prompt reply do the wrong dates make a difference?




Yes I'm sure he did say that but I wouldn't take much notice of police officers.

I have done road traffic for a very long time and I've never heard of an awareness course for no insurance. Its not an awareness issue. Its a legal duty. I don't know what they would teach! I suppose it is possible that an obscure area runs them but its certainly not common. What he may have meant was the fixed penalty would be available which is cheaper than going to court. That is certainly right.

In any event, you can always write back to them immediately asking for the awareness course and explaining what was said to you. They will probably refuse but it will eat into their time period as they will probably offer the fixed penalty again. The risk that you bear is that they may not and will summons you to court but that is not likely. If the date was the 3 May then they have a long time to get this to court so there is no real benefit in summonsing immediately.

The date of birth is a non issue.

You could always go to court and argue that special reasons apply. If its that you forgot to renew though then thats not the best special reasons argument. Sometimes they can succeed in cases where a person reasonably believes that he was covered but was not because, for instance, the insurance company cancelled in error and didn't inform them.

They will like the fact of your hitherto good driving record.

If you went to court then you would still only get 6 points but the financial penalty would be higher. When costs are included that is the risk.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo


Thank you for your reply One thing that I am not sure on is the date on form that came to me in the post stated that the offence date was 2-5-2014

location Stansted airport that was a Friday and I was nowhere near Stansted on that day. I was there on the Saturday. Does this make a difference? also if I went to court do you have any idea what the cost would be and how long would it take to to go to court

If they have got the date of the offence wrong then you could take it to court and plead not guilty as indeed you were not committing this offence on that date.

The risk is that they would summons you and amend the dates and then you will be stuck with pleading guilty at court.

If you pleaded at the first opportunity then costs would be £85 but the fine would be higher. usually 125-175% of your weekly income and the victim surcharge of £35.

How long it takes depends on how quickly they summons. They may forget. They only have six months to summons and they do regularly forget. Stanstead is in Essex though and Essex Constabulary are not knowing for forgetting often.

When they do summons its usually in court within about 10 days to two weeks.
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo


Thank you for you advice.although I did not like the outcome.

The service was excllent.



No problem and all the best.

Remember that I am always available to help with your questions. Even if I am in Court I will usually pick up a question within 12 hours. For future information, please start your question with ‘For Jo C’.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo


I have just found out that The policy I took out in 2013 had an automatic renewal but because my wife paid for it on her credit card the underwriters took off the auto renewal and did not inform me.

Sainsburys said this was done because my wife although the same name and living at the same address for the past 47 years is counted as a third party person and therefore the auto renewal was taken off. The insurance was paid in full so therefore surley sainsburys is at fault, and i was right to assume that I was covered

That might give you a special reasons argument.

It depends how much risk you want to take.

You need to refuse the fixed penalty and wait for the summons. You could make written representations to CPS that there is no public interest in prosecuting this for the reasons above.

If that fails then you could always plead guilty but argue that special reasons apply not to add points. If the facts are as you say then probably you would succeed but Magistrates are very unpredictable so nobody can guarantee it.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo

Thank you for that ray of light.

Michael xx

No problem.

All the best.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Jo


Sorry I had to pop out.

Do I ignore the fixed penalty notice that came down in the post and wait for the CPS to contact me?



You need to refuse the fixed penalty and wait for the summons. You could make written representations to CPS that there is no public interest in prosecuting this for the reasons above.