Defective NIP Over 14 Days After The Offence


Is there a legal obligation for the NIP to be served within 14 days of the alleged offence? Failure to observe this obligation renders the notice null and void?

Rob Says:

Yes s.1 RTOA 1988 states that a NIP must be served (if you were not given a verbal NIP at the scene of the alleged offence?) within 14 days of the alleged offence. If not then you cannot be charged with the original

offence but you can be charged with failing to name the driver. A defective NIP is not a defence to failing to name the driver as that offence doesn’t require a NIP.

Tell me what’s actually happened and I may be able to assist further. There re other exceptions to the NIP rule. You have to be the registered keeper for it to apply to you.

Question Response:

Thank you for your assistance.

I received the NIP on the 21/04/x advising an alleged speeding offence 57mph in a 40mph area on the 10/03/x, the NIP was dated the 19/04/x.

I returned the NIP to them on the 21/04/x advising their documentation clearly shows they have taken over 5 weeks from the date of the offence to issue the NIP let alone serve it to me. Therefore it is time barred and null & void.

Today I have received a further letter from them advising they have met their obligation and the NIP is valid.

However no clear details that explain why?

I rang them this morning they advise their original paperwork was issued within the 14 day allowance but when they checked the details of the registered driver with the DVLA their request was returned unanswered.

Or it was returned from my old address?

They then re checked with the DVLA and it seems was originally provided with my old address, eventually the DVLA advised them of my present address. They advise at this point they re issued the NIP hence the date 19/04/x.

I have asked them to supply me with the documentary evidence to confirm these events / history, they have refused stating this is not their policy and are therefore not allowed to.

They advise as you have that I need to return the NIP confirming I was the driver, I am unable after all this time to determine who the driver at the time was. They advise the camera picture is of the rear of the vehicle so driver can not be determined.

Therefore as I am the owner of the vehicle I will have to advise I was the driver, this I will do.

If I accept the NIP they estimate it will be 3 points plus £60.

They advise if I wish to contest the time re service of the NIP they will pass directly to the magistrates court, at which they will produce their documents, that they have refused to show me!!!

I am very unhappy with this and feel their handling of this is matter has been very poor, their refusal to provide evidence leaves me alarmed.

So basically what I am being told is there was a problem with DVLA which was not their problem and I should ignore the dates of the paperwork I have been provided with and that I should blindly trust them. As they have documentation that they have refused to provide to me.

I will confirm I was the driver as I have no choice but want to refute the validity of the NIP as it was not served upon me within the required time frame. If this means going to court so be it.

Rob’s Answer:

I am afraid the police are right in relation to the NIP issue. There are exceptions to the 14 day NIP rule and the main one is if the police send the NIP to the address that they have from the DVLA or they have trouble tracking you down. As long as the police can show that the fault was down to the DVLA and not them the NIP will be held to be valid.

I can understand why you would be having difficulties in identifying the driver after all this time.

You are under a duty to name all potential drivers and make sure anyone you do nominate could have been the driver on the date on question and they were insured to drive your car. You need to show that you have used reasonable diligence to figure it out and that you have provided as much information as possible.

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