Driver at risk of 100 penalty points avoids totting disqualification.

A driver who committed 23 speeding offences in quick succession, putting him at risk of a total of 100+ points, has avoided a six month totting disqualification at the Magistrates Court with the help of Patterson Law.

The unfortunate driver started a new job in an unfamiliar area and thought the speed limit was 70mph, when in fact it was 50mph. He started driving to and from work, believing each time he was travelling within the limit at speeds of 65-77. Without realising, he was racking up the tickets.

Because he had just moved, the letters warning him of the offences went to his old address, so he never had the opportunity to correct his offending behaviour. Instead the police posted them to him in one go. He returned home from work one day and opened 23 speeding tickets all in the same envelope.

In usual circumstances a driver who accumulates 12 or more points within three years would be at risk of a  minimum six month disqualification, possibly longer simply because of the number of points on his licence.

Obviously this is quite an unusual circumstance, so with our help, both the police and the courts were persuaded to take a practical and pragmatic approach to sentence. The police agreed to withdraw 17 of the speeding offences, leaving 6 outstanding to go to court.

At court, he was given six penalty points for the first two speeding offences, which in addition to the three on his licence left him on nine points, as well as a 56 day disqualification for the remaining four offences. So he didn’t get off lightly, but he was given the opportunity to correct his offending behaviour moving forward while still giving him a significant warning. He also received fines and costs of over £2000.

It is good to see the courts and the police taking a fair approach. For 100 points some would be calling for a lifetime disqualification. But that would not be fair. He was confused as to the speed limit. And by the time he realised, it was too late and all 23 offences had been committed. In our view this was a perfectly fair and reasonable approach by both the prosecution and the courts.