Speeding Offence

About Speeding Offences

Speeding is the most common of all driving offences. If you were not stopped at the time, you should receive a notice of intended prosecution (NIP) and request to provide driver details (s.172 notice).

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Fixed Penalties and Driver Awareness Courses

At speeds not far above the limit, you are likely to be offered a fixed penalty notice resulting in 3 points and fine. If you are eligible, the police may offer you a driver awareness course for speeding. If you have too many points on your licence, you will receive a Single Justice Procedure Notice for speeding.

If you would like to know more please contact us today.

Single Justice Procedure Notices

Higher-level speeds are also dealt with by Single Justice Procedure Notices. If it is your first speeding offence, it will still be dealt with by the Court.

If you would like to know more please visit Single Justice Procedure Notice

Magistrates’ Court Hearings

All Speeding offences are dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court except for appeals which are dealt with in the Crown Court. You may need to attend court if you are at risk of a ban for speeding. If this is the case, the court may send you a summons to attend court for consideration of disqualification. The court can also send you a notice of proposed driving disqualification where you can ask for a hearing if you want to ask the court not to disqualify you. If you want to challenge a speeding offence or are worried about a driving ban for speeding, we can help.

For more information please see our FAQs on speeding offences below.

Speeding Offence Summary

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Other names

Overspeeding, SP30 (non-motorway offences), SP50 (motorway offences)

Main Legislation

s.89(1) Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984

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Maximum Penalties

Driving Penalties: 3-6 penalty points. Driving ban (no maximum)

Fine: £2,500 for motorways (unless temporary speed limit). £1,000 on other roads

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Court

Magistrates only (unless an appeal).

Imprisonable? No

Do you need help with a Speeding Offence?

Contact us today to find out how we can help you.

Relevant Cases

Speeding Offence FAQs

Will I be eligible for a speed awareness course?

These are offered at the discretion of the police and within a fixed time limit. The court cannot offer speed awareness courses.

Requirements for eligibility are:

  • You have admitted to being the driver of the vehicle at the time of the alleged offence and returned the documentation within the 28 day period calculated from the date the notice was sent to you.
  • No more than 12 weeks have elapsed since the date of the alleged offence.
  • There were no further offences committed at the time of the alleged offence.
  • You have not attended a speed awareness course within the 3 years prior to the current offence.
  • You were driving at a speed which qualifies.

Will I be sent a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) for Speeding?

Unless you were stopped at the time or involved in an accident, the police must send a Notice of Intended Prosecution to the registered keeper or driver so that it arrives within 14 days.

The Notice of Intended Prosecution is usually combined with a request for driver information. If you do not respond to the request, you are likely to be convicted of an offence of failing to give driver details. That offence carries 6 points or a discretionary disqualification.

Can the Police disqualify me from driving?

No. The police have no power to impose a driving disqualification. The police can only offer fixed penalties which carry points and a fine depending on the offence. You do not have to accept fixed penalties if you do not accept the offence. Only courts can impose driving disqualifications.

Can I still accept a Fixed Penalty once I've received a Single Justice Procedure Notice?

Unfortunately once a Single Justice Procedure Notice has been issued, it’s in the court system and can’t be changed back to a Fixed Penalty Notice. You may be able to plead guilty without attending court. If there’s a good reason why you missed the Fixed Penalty Notice deadline, the court may decide to order that you pay the original fine and no additional prosecution costs.

How do I challenge a speeding offence?

It may seem obvious, but for a speeding conviction, the prosecution must prove that:

  • You were driving the motor vehicle in question, and;
  • At the time and place alleged you were exceeding the speed limit.

If the court cannot be sure that the prosecution has proven either of these points, you should be acquitted.

If you accept that you were the driver and that you were speeding, the only true defence is that of Necessity.

The courts have narrowly interpreted this defence and have ruled that the defence of Necessity is not available where the circumstances did not constrain the driver to act in breach of the law. In other words, it can only apply when the driver had no real alternative other than to break the speed limit.

There are of course also Special Reasons arguments which, although not technically defences, may allow a speeding driver to avoid penalty points or disqualification depending on the circumstances.

What Corroboration is required?

The law states that a person prosecuted for speeding shall not be convicted solely on the evidence of one witness to the effect that, in the opinion of the witness, the defendant was driving at a speed exceeding that limit.

These corroboration requirements do not apply to motorway speeding offences (overall speed limit on motorways) except those motorway speed limits relating to special classes of vehicles.

The corroborative witness must form the opinion that the vehicle is speeding at the same moment as the first witness. It means you can’t have two different witnesses forming a view as to speed when the vehicle is at two different places.

Corroboration can also be provided by the speedometer of a police vehicle, radar equipment, or Vascar or by the speed testing device being used. You can be convicted on the evidence of one police officer supported by evidence by him of the reading of a speedometer or other mechanical means, even if there is no evidence that the speedometer had been tested. The same principle applies to radar guns. This may not be the case if the speed alleged is only marginally over the limit.

Can I challenge the speed camera's accuracy?

Yes, and we have done so successfully in the past. The manufacturers of speed detection devices maintain that they are incredibly accurate if operated correctly. That is likely to be correct, but the accuracy also relies on how a person operates the equipment. Human error can result in erroneous readings.

Likelihood of success will depend on several factors, but given the technicalities involved, successful challenges are time-consuming, and therefore rarely cheap. You must think very carefully before embarking on a challenge, and at Pragma, we can talk you through the process so you can make an informed decision.

Will I definitely get points or a ban for speeding?

Yes, if you are convicted and have no special reasons.

The court has no power to impose a more substantial fine in place of points or a ban.

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