Unfortunately, speeding ticket photo evidence is not always clear. While the police are happy to issue drivers with a speeding fine they are not always able to supply the driver with a clear picture.
This presents a few issues, especially if multiple people drive the vehicle. However, the police will want you to identify who the driver was at the time of the “offence”.
If you are the owner of the vehicle it is up to you to find out who was driving at the time. The police use the phrase “reasonable diligence”.
This is a phrase they use if they think you have sufficiently endeavoured to find out who was driving. If the police think you’ve used reasonable diligence they might not charge you.
This is because they are unlikely to have any evidence to prove that you or anyone else was driving the vehicle. What this means is you or another person might not be charged at all.
However, the choice as to whether you will be prosecuted is down to the judge.
Speeding fines are a great source of revenue and in 2016 alone almost 2 million fixed penalty notices were issued. This figure alone shows that speeding tickets are big business for the police and the government.
What can you do if the photograph showing the speeding offence is unclear and you cannot remember who was driving? The truth is that you can challenge the speeding ticket, particularly if the photographic evidence is not clear.
However, if your case is taken to court you may find that the court finds in favour of the police. If this is the case it’s likely that your speeding fines will turn into much bigger ones.
You might be told to pay the court costs or you might even more penalty points could be added to your licence. This is why less than 1% of drivers contest their speeding ticket.
However, if you do think you have a case you may wish to seek legal advice.
A solicitor can help you to understand how good your case is. They can also help you understand whether you should plead not guilty or attend a speed awareness course.
Our lawyers have managed to get the Police to accept a course for drivers even when they haven’t been offered one.
Back in 2017, those who were caught speeding saw the sentencing structure change. Since then, the minimum penalty for breaking the speed limit is £100.
Three penalty points were also added to the driver’s licence. Penalties such as these are often automatically issued.
The individual who has received a speeding ticket could be offered the chance to attend a speed awareness course. The cost of attending the course is about the same as the fine but you won’t have three points added to your licence.
However, if you are caught speeding on multiple occasions you could build up 12 points (If not more) within 3 years. In cases such as this, you could face disqualification from driving.
As we have already seen, contesting a speeding fine is quite a risky business. This is the case even if you are unable to identify the driver.
Those appeals that are successful tend to be built around how and where the speeding ticket was issued. You may be pleased to know that many penalties are dropped.
This is the case if the registered keeper of the vehicle responds to a notice of intended prosecution. The response that is given mentions that they cannot remember who was driving at the time of the offence.
There is a difficulty with making this claim as the court might decide not to believe you. If this is the case, the registered keeper could be fined £1,000 for not identifying the driver.
In some cases, the registered keeper could even face a driving ban.
If you have been caught speeding by a police officer rather than a speed camera your NIP might be verbal. The police officer is likely to tell you what you need to do next and how you can respond to the verbal NIP.
They will also tell you why they stopped you and how fast they think you were speeding.
If you are issued with a postal NIP it will take up to 14 days to reach the vehicle’s registered keeper. The keeper/owner of the vehicle has 28 days to respond to the NIP with the information that has been requested.
If you have received a nip and you wish to contest it there are some common defences you may wish to use:
If you think the speed cameras/equipment had not been calibrated you might want to request a copy of the calibration certificates.
If you plan to go ahead and contest a speeding ticket or you simply want some advice, we can help. We have a speeding fine calculator that can help you understand the size of the fine the court could give you.
If you would still like to go ahead and contest your speeding ticket you’ll have to enter a not guilty plea. You will then be told to attend court.
If you wish to contest the ticket and you are confident you can put your case forward you may not need a lawyer. However, the law can be tricky and you could benefit from hiring a lawyer.
Here at Drive Protect, we have a team of lawyers that have a lot of experience in dealing with speeding tickets. A lawyer can put your case across and represent you.
Please note, a court may not take too kindly to anyone who fails to understand the law. This is why it’s always worth seeking legal advice.