going to court for speeding offence

hi all

i wonder if anyone can shed any light on the process of going to court for a speeding offence? what to expect. what the set-up is? what they might say and what the defendant is allowed to say?

a family member is in this position shortly. first ever offence in 16 years of driving - doing 90 in a 50 zone (on motorway), which was assumed by family member to be a 70 zone - no excuse i know.

letter said automatic disqualification if court is not attended (but of course it will be attended). are there any protocols for this, or is it on a case-by-case basis?

?points, fines, speeding course? all help gratefully received in advance x
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Comments

  • anewman
    anewman Posts: 9,200 Forumite
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    People always link to a site pepipoo.org which I gather has some sort of forum.

    Yeah even doing 90 in a 70 would be bad. He'll have been clocked at 90 too and his speedo will have read nearer to 100. I doubt that excuse would stand up in court. Got to hate people who come up your botty then after accelerating hard all the way to a foot off your bumper in the outside lane when you had no opportunity to pull back in, then braking. Other thing I don't understand is when there's red lights and queues people going as fast as possible then braking hard. Do these people seriously believe they'll get anywhere faster or that the queues will disappear?!

    Being a law obiding driver who tries to be as safe as possible at all times, I would hope with doing nearly double the limit a ban. AFAIK they think it's serious enough to go to court, they usually just drop you a congratulations you have points and here's a fine in the post.
  • Keith
    Keith Posts: 2,924 Forumite
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    sazzacat wrote: »
    first ever offence in 16 years of driving - doing 90 in a 50 zone (on motorway), which was assumed by family member to be a 70 zone - no excuse i know.


    There is no defence, it has to be a ban/points.

    "I was only doing an indicated 100mph because I believed it to be a 70mph road" The additional charge of driving without due care could be added as you didn't notice the speed reduction.

    I'm guessing we are talking of 90 through roadworks? And if that is the case the driver really should be banned, the roadworkers are protected by the speed limit reduction, where as I may say 90 is fine on an open motorway when it comes to roadworks the speed limit really should be obeyed.

    Speeding course would be offered as an alternative to Court.
  • CHR15
    CHR15 Posts: 5,193 Forumite
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    I went to court for speeding once.

    Its entirely case by case. I sat there from 9:30am when the courts started until 1:30pm when I finally got called.

    There is a sort of understanding that 30mph over the speed limit leads to a ban.

    What I can say is that for all the cases I witnessed that day in Court, The people caught speeding through roadworks were receiving NO leniency at all, the sentences were at least 50% higher than those of us caught on unrestricted motorways.

    I learnt a valuable lesson that day, ALWAYS slow to 50 through roadworks, they don't go on for very long really. It REALLY isn't worth it.

    I am not holier than thou, I still sit at 80+ for most of my motorway journeys in the flow of traffic.

    I used the duty Solicitor as it was a fairly straight forward speeding offence (84mph) but with the offence in excess of over 30mph over AND in roadworks, it may be worth getting your own brief.

    Plead stupidity for the offence and do everything possible to convince the Judge that livelihood/ Career / family etc will all be destroyed with a ban!

    Tell him/her to leave their dignity at the door, go in begging and pleading or else a ban will likely follow.



    I am not sure but I believe courses are only offered under simple fixed penalty offences (SP50). I dont think it would be offered for this offence where a ban, up to 6 points and a large fine is likely.

    I am sure that being their first offence in 16 years doesn't actually reflect his/her driving though, this is the first time they have been Caught in 16 years.
  • tomstickland
    tomstickland Posts: 19,538 Forumite
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    Yes he'll need to look at Pepipoo and maybe the speedtrap bible website.

    A lot of conclusions are being drawn in this thread. The accused might have been on an open 3 lane motorway at 5am for all we know. If it was a clearly marked 50 limit with Gatso cameras then they are muppets.

    90 in a 50 stands a good chance of a ban, but some have managed to walk away with points and a fine. It'll be worth talking to a solicitor who deals with this sort of case.
    Happy chappy
  • firesidemaid
    firesidemaid Posts: 2,129 Forumite
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    thanks for all your replies so far - doesn't look or sound good does it?

    i'll have to check re: roadworks. i don't think they mentioned it - i 'assumed' it was an area like the m42 where some sections have a different limit.

    thanks for the suggestions re other websites - i'm off to check those now....
  • CHR15
    CHR15 Posts: 5,193 Forumite
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    I would be wary of those kind of sites though.

    A friend of mine was caught (91 in a 70 (motorway))

    He got all tooled up with his online advice, ended up with a £400 fine!! It was only a fixed penalty to start with £70!!

    If you do the crime, face it like a man! admit it but try to appeal to the judges good nature, some of them are human!
  • firesidemaid
    firesidemaid Posts: 2,129 Forumite
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    i have to say after having a look at those sites, if you are 'very guilty' then it does seem to make sense to plead so and take the punishment.

    very helpful thank you - i didn't realise that the bans could be for such short periods.

    does anyone know how much more bans affect insurance increases than large amounts of points?

    i am presuming that on informing their insurer of the result that their premiums will increase immediately?

    thanks again x
  • Conor_3
    Conor_3 Posts: 6,944 Forumite
    Please don't go to court spouting the rubbish the Pepipoo forums say. One bloke on here who posted saying he had got a higher fine as a result. If he'd kept his mouth shut, he'd have had a £60 fine but it ended up being nearly double that.
  • mrbadexample
    mrbadexample Posts: 10,805 Forumite
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    Ok, I've had a few beers and only read the first post, so don't take this as Gospel...

    As far as I can see, the defendant has been caught speeding. This fact is not disputed. Therefore everything else is mitigation, not a defence. The defendant should plead guilty at the earliest opportunity (and so take advantage of any reduction in penalty for an early plea), turn up in court and state that he/she believed they were in a 70 limit etc. It won't get you off, but if you happen to have a sympathetic / not too bright magistrate, it may save you a few quid.

    I reckon that's about the best you can hope for. :confused:
    If you lend someone a tenner and never see them again, it was probably worth it.
  • firesidemaid
    firesidemaid Posts: 2,129 Forumite
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    Conor wrote: »
    Please don't go to court spouting the rubbish the Pepipoo forums say. One bloke on here who posted saying he had got a higher fine as a result. If he'd kept his mouth shut, he'd have had a £60 fine but it ended up being nearly double that.

    even after looking at those websites, it's obvious that mrbadexamples reply (beer or no beer) sums things up quite nicely - and is the general concensus.

    i don't undertand why people would want to go to court when its only a £60 fine?
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