Tag Archives: speeding

Chesterfield motoring solicitor keeps taxi driver’s licence

Chesterfield Motoring Solicitor David Gittins was recently instructed in a case where his client was at real risk of a driving ban.  This would have meant the loss of his job as a taxi driver and a substantial impact on his 4 children.

David’s client had been caught driving at 76 mph in an 30 mph speed chesterfield motoring solicitorlimit close to Chesterfield Town Centre. David’s strong advocacy  and diligent preparation enabled the client to keep his driving licence.  Instead he left the court with a fine and penalty points.

This case, perhaps better than most, demonstrates the benefits of choosing a local Chesterfield motoring solicitor carefully.  Surprisingly, David’s client had tried to instruct another local solicitor’s firm.  They had declined to take the instruction as they didn’t believe he could save the Defendant’s driving license.

Benefits of a local Chesterfield motoring solicitor

David’s client told him that he had been caught speeding whilst driving out of Chesterfield town centre along Derby Road at excessive speeds.  With local knowledge, David was immediately able to recognise the seriousness of the situation.

chesterfield motoring solicitorDavid’s client had been running late and had made a terrible error in trying to make up time by grossly exceeding the speed limit.  His client did not dispute the speed.  He indicated to David his desire to plead guilty at the very first opportunity in order to gain maximum credit and demonstrate his remorse.  In retrospect he appreciated the potential danger he created with this piece of driving.

Our client required his driving licence to be able to work.  David had to make his client aware that due to the level of speed the Court would consider imposing an immediate driving disqualification  of up to 56 days.

As a Chesterfield motoring solicitor, David knew that the local Magistrates would also know the road in question.  Because of this he knew that the only way in which he could keep his client’s license was to prepare detailed mitigation to present to the Court.

chesterfield motoring solicitorDavid had two lengthy conferences with his client in advance of the Court hearing.  This was to take details of how a disqualification would impact upon him, his wife and their four children.  For example, he provided transport to a separate school for each child, as well as to a variety of after school activities. Bluntly put,  if the client lost his license it was almost impossible for the children to attend school on time due to their age and the travel involved.

David preparing a map to show the court the acute difficulties that his client’s children would face.  He also secured references on behalf of his client.  For example, his client was involved in the local community tackling drug addiction.

Penalty Points rather than a driving ban

As a result of this detailed preparation and strong advocacy, David was able to present his client’s mitigation in an extremely effective way.  Because of this, the Magistrates’ were persuaded to take a lenient approach.  David’s client received a fine and penalty points but no driving ban.  This meant that he was able to keep his employment and was understandably delighted with the outcome.

Contact a Chesterfield Motoring Solicitor

chesterfield crime solicitor David Gittins
Partner and Chesterfield motoring law solicitor David Gittins

If you require the advice and representation of an expert motoring solicitor then please contact David at our Chesterfield office on 01246 283000 or use the contact form below.  Details of our Chesterfield office can be found here.

David  can provide you with detailed and affordable advice as to whether you are able to challenge the prosecution evidence relating to your road traffic offence, or how you are likely to be sentenced following a guilty plea.

chesterfield motoring solicitor


Lengthy driving disqualification avoided for Chesterfield road traffic client

In recent months the penalties for speeding in a motor vehicle have increased dramatically since April 2017.  This includes a reduction in the threshold at which a defendant faces a driving disqualification.  You can read more about this here.

driving disqualification chesterfieldAs a result the risk of being disqualified following a speeding conviction is much higher than previously.  Chesterfield motoring law solicitor David Gittins was recently instructed by a client who faced disqualification for speeding.

In this case, although there was no mitigation to be put forward to prevent a driving disqualification, David was able to advance powerful mitigation to secure a very short disqualification,  The ban would have little impact on our client’s ability to continue with his employment.

The Allegation

David’s client, who was only nineteen years old, had been seen by police driving his car at twice the legal limit.  Unfortunately he was driving at more than twice the legal limit.

On being pulled over by the police he gave his details and then had to await the inevitable speeding summons and court date.

Client appearance at Chesterfield Magistrates’ Court

David had been instructed to represent our client prior to the court date.  Although entering a guilty plea will be easy for an unrepresented defendant facing a speeding charge, choosing what extra information will favourably influence the outcome of their case.

driving disqualification reduced Chesterfield road traffic solicitorThis may conclude telling the Magistrates’ what happened and why.  A defendant’s demeanour or lack of appreciation of the gravity of his case might mean that they approach the case in a manner guaranteed to aggravate the situation.

The starting point for Magistrates will always be that speeding can have very serious consequences and they will be looking to see an appropriate level of regret and remorse.  More can be read about that here.

With this in mind David took instructions to see what personal mitigation would be available to his client.  As he worked in the motor trade he needed a driving licence.  His job would remain open to him if there could be a successful argument for a short disqualification.  He lived in a rural area with an almost non-existent public transport system.

Successful mitigation of driving disqualification

David had already considered the sentencing guidelines so directed his mitigation at the relevant aspects of the guideline.  By focussing on the positive elements of his client’s character, including his employment, David was able to secure a favourable sentencing outcome.

Chesterfield magistrates court driving disqualification legal representationOur client was eventually fined and disqualified from driving.  The disqualification was only for 21 days however. This was at the very lower end of the sentencing range.  David’s client was particularly happy as he was due to go on a foreign holiday for fourteen days of the disqualification when he wouldn’t be driving in any event.  This meant that he would only have to miss one week of work.

His job was secured and our client was extremely satisfied with the result.  He appreciated that had be represented himself it was likely that his approach was likely to be less focussed and it may well have been that he didn’t secure the same outcome.

Since this case, David has already referred a further referral from his client who has instructed him in a similar matter.

Affordable fixed fees

Legal aid is not normally available for cases of this nature.  As a result our client instructed us on a private basis.  For most motoring offences fixed fees can be agreed and this was the case here.

Instruct a Chesterfield Road Traffic solicitor

Chesterfield road traffic and crime solicitor David Gittins

If you wish to instruct David for any road traffic or criminal matter please contact him at our Chesterfield office on 01246 283000 or alternatively use the contact form below.  While we can make no promises about the outcome of any case, we are best placed to argue against a driving disqualification or to reduce the length of a driving ban.


New Guideline for Speeding Penalties in Force from 24 April 2017

road traffic law speeding disqualificationThe new sentencing guidelines as they apply to speeding offences have been receiving some publicity.  The reports have highlighted the increase in the level of fine that can be imposed for the most serious examples of speeding that appear before the Magistrates’ Court.

The penalties involve maximum fines of £1,000  or £2,500 if the offence is committed on the motorway.

Nottingham motoring law solicitor Graham Heathcote spoke to BBC Radio Nottingham on 24 April 2017.  You can listen to the interview here:

You can begin to work out the starting point for your particular case by looking at where you fall within the bands.

Band A

This covers low level speeding.  It will result in three points and a fine of up to 50% of your weekly income.  It applies if you are driving up to 30mph in a 20mph zone; up to 40mph in a 30mph zone; 55mph in a 40mph zone; 65 in a 50; 80 in a 60, and; up to 90mph in a 70mph zone.

Band B

This will attract a driving ban of 7 – 28 days will or four to six penalty points.  This punishment will be imposed with a fine of up to 100% of your weekly income.

It covers more serious speeding – 31mph to 40mph in a 20mph zone; 41mph to 50mph in a 30 zone; 56mph to 65mph in a 40; 66 to 75 in a 50; 81-90 in a 60, and; 91mph to 100mph in a 70mph.

Band C

This sentencing range is reserved for the most serious speeding offences. The court will consider a driving ban of between 7 and 56 days or impose six penalty points.  This could be coupled with a fine up to 150% of weekly income.

This covers speeds of over 41mph in a 20mph zone; 51mph in a 30mph zone; 66mph in a 40mph zone; 76mph in a 50mph; 91mph in a 60mph, and; 100mph in a 70mph zone.

speeding penalty points driving ban
Magistrates’ Court Sentencing Guidelines for Speeding

A change in emphasis for mid-range speeding offences?

The guideline for Band B offences appears to be a change of emphasis in relation to the starting point.  It is unlikely to be an error in drafting that suggests that the Magistrates’ should first consider a driving ban and then look at penalty points as an alternative.

We will have to wait and see whether the courts’ interpretation of the guidelines results in more motorists receiving short discretionary disqualifications.  We know that the effect of such a driving ban may well be disproportionate to the time that it is in force.

The net effect of these guidelines might effect many more motorists.  Those who break the limit by miscalculation rather than recklessness, now face a real risk of ending up off the road. The consequences can go beyond the simple ban, including a massive hike in future insurance premiums.

Aggravating Factors

The table above show the starting point for speeding offences before the court.  The fine and whether there is a disqualification or points will defend on the aggravating and mitigating factors in any case.

The guideline features a non-exhaustive list of factors that may increase serious and therefore the financial penalty as well as increase the chances of receiving a disqualification. These include:

  • Previous convictions
  • Offence committed whilst on bail
  • Offence committed on licence or post sentence supervision
  • Poor road or weather conditions
  • Driving LGV, HGV, PSV etc.
  • Towing caravan/trailer
  • Carrying passengers or heavy load
  • Driving for hire or reward
  • Evidence of unacceptable standard of driving over and above speed
  • Location e.g. near school
  • High level of traffic or pedestrians in the vicinity


Some aspects of the case might reduce seriousness and therefore the penalty imposed such as:

  • No previous convictions or no relevant/recent convictions
  • Good character and/or exemplary conduct
  • Genuine emergency established

Net effect, many more motorists, who break the limit by miscalculation rather than recklessness, now face a real risk of ending up off the road. The consequences can go beyond the simple ban, including a massive hike in future insurance premiums.

Ring now, 0115 9599550, and get us on your side.

Contract a Motoring Law Specialist

speeding road traffic law penalty points driving ban
Nottingham motoring law solicitor Graham Heathcote

We appreciate that your driving licence will be important to you.  You may receive a notification that the police are considering a prosecution. You might be told that you have a court date.

Here at VHS Fletchers we have an experienced team of motoring lawyers, with extensive experience in what can be a complex area of the law, providing technically sound, clear advice and with a proven track record of saving motorists’ driving licences.

Please contact Graham Heathcote on 0115 9599550 or contact him using the form below for advice and an estimate of our fees.