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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 71146
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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C. I just received a Notice of Intended Prosecution for

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For Jo C.I just received a Notice of Intended Prosecution for driving without care and attention and without consideration.I'm not sure if it was my husband or I as we both use this car, and I am not usually in the town where the location was given (he works there), but I was there about twice in the last month, and I have been very stressed about a charity project I am working on, so it seems like it could have been me, although I don't have in my diary that I was there that day, but that may be wrong.In any event there was no accident or anything, so I don't know whether the issue was speed, or something else, and what sort of evidence there is, because neither of us had any interaction w the police.How can I find out the answers to these questions so that we can best prepare for this?

The NIP will contain a date of the incident.

That date must be within the last two weeks.

Have you checked your diaries to ascertain who was driving?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We have checked diaries, and we are not 100% sure; we think it is more likely to be me. My husband left work early that day, we think (which correlates to coming home in terms of the location), but if it was one of the days I dropped things at the bank it could be me. The date of the incident is 15/08.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The date of the alleged offense is the 15/08 and the date of the letter is 18/08, but it was received yesterday, 27/08, so in any event seems to be within timelines.

I'm really sorry but they are not going to accept that explanation.

The problem is this. It is just plain not credible to say that you can't identify the driver of a personal car within two weeks of the incident.

I realise that you won't know offhand who was driving but the law requires you to investigate and we can all ascertain who had our car, even with shared cars, within two weeks.

Some haulage companies can sometimes raise this defence but not private drivers usually.

The difficulty is this. To use a ridiculous example to illustrate the position - if the allegation against the driver were that he was hanging around outside primary schools trying to abduct children then the registered keeper would find out who he was so fast the world would spin.

If the registered keeper can do it with a serious allegation then they can do it with a driving matter.

Magistrates know that and so don't generally accept that excuse.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We've just looked through our records of emails sent and it looks like my husband was still at the office shortly after the alleged incident time, so it must have been me. We have been switching cars because his car has more room and I've been hauling things to the charity site, and we don't put which car we take in the diary. But given the emails, I am sure it was me.

Oh yes, nobody expects you to know offhand.

The problem is that the law requires you to investigate and find out and we can all do that with reasonable effort unless, of course, it was a very long time ago and even then it is usually possible.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Just moving on now, how do I find out on what basis is this notice was sent? There was no accident (but I understand that these notices are not only issued for accidents), there is no speeding camera anywhere there on the road. Did a policeman see something? Why then weren't we just pulled over? I'm wondering how this came about and what exactly happened and how I find out.

You don't at this stage.

This is just a S172 request. All you do is identify the driver.

There is no way of knowing really. It could have been a police officer or a report from another driver or a local council cctv camera.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, thanks for that. Presumably they will write to me and I will be able to learn more before any court date or anything? I presume I am entitled to this info after I get whatever paperwork they send me next.

They may invite you in for interview but that isn't common with careless driving.

I would imagine they would just summons if they are going to pursue it.

They will have to give you information then though.

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