Special Reasons No Insurance

Question:

On the 2nd of July I was stopped for driving without insurance. When I was stopped my boyfriend’s car was towed I was not actually handed a penalty notice which made tracking my case extremely difficult.

I called the MET office and the DVLA on numerous occasions, and even asked my brother in law who is a policeman at the MET to try to find my case, but everyone told me that there was no record of my case.

More than 8 months had passed and I have never received my summons. I was completely unaware that there were proceedings being held against me until I returned from holiday on the 24th of April to find a letter from the DVLA at my home address requesting my licenses and a letter from the Fine Officer demanding a £610. I have since learnt that my case was on the 5th March x 8 months after the offence.

Although I am guilty of driving without insurance, I was completely unaware at the time that I was driving uninsured since it was my partner’s car and he had a monthly DD set up to pay the insurance automatically.

Neither us knew that the policy had lapsed. The letters that HSBS claim to have sent had never been received by us and we had never received a call from them or the bank to tell us that the DD had bounced. So adamant was I when my car was towed that I was in fact insured that I made the PC make a special note to the fact on my statement.

I wanted to appear in court to plead me case, that is was an unintentional offence, that as far as I knew my partner had done everything in his power to pay the car insurance with regularity and that since I have a 2 year old daughter and need to able to drive so that I can pick her up from the childminders after work and therefore would suffer terribly from a 6 month ban.

Furthermore, I have been fined £525 which incredibly high given that the statutory fine is £200. I do not know why the fine is so high since I was not in court to hear to case. I am convinced that I would have been able to have it and the ban reduced had I been able to put my case forward.

However, since I never received my summons I was never given the opportunity.

What should I do? Should I make a statutory declaration even though I guilty? Should I appeal?

Paula Says:

You need to make a statutory declaration at the court that dealt with your case.

This will set your conviction aside along with the points and the fines. This is on the basis that you were unaware of the proceedings. The court cannot refuse you this opportunity.

You then need to plead guilty and make a special reasons argument to avoid the points on the basis that you were driving under the genuine misapprehension that you were insured.

You have reasonable prospects of success based on what you have told me so far.

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