Drink driving is a serious offence under UK laws. If you are charged with a drink-driving offence, you may face a broad range of penalties. These include fines, potential imprisonment, as well as the risk of losing your driving privileges due to disqualification.
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Several factors affect a drink driving case. A court will consider all these factors when sentencing you for the offence.
It is critically important that you consult reliable drink driving offence solicitors if you are facing this charge. Qualified solicitors will help you weigh your legal options, see if there are any potential defences to the charge, and work with you through the legal proceedings.
Here at the London-based Adam Bernard’s, our drink driving offence lawyers have an extensive experience in this legal area. You can consult our motoring offence solicitors to discuss your case in detail and choose the best option for you.
The laws governing drink driving offences in the UK are specified in the Road Traffic Act 1988, Section 5. As per this section, drink driving offences are categorized into two types:
Excess alcohol is defined as the following:
Other laws may also come into play when determining the outcome of your drink driving case. Our drink driving offence solicitors can help you understand these laws and make an informed decision.
As noted above, two tiers of penalties drink driving offences.
If you have been charged with driving or attempting to drive with excess alcohol, you face a stiffer set of penalties. These include:
If your offence qualifies as Excess Alcohol (In Charge), you may face the following penalties:
The actual penalties for a drink driving offence depend greatly on various aggravating and mitigating factors. The presence of aggravating factors will prompt a court to pronounce stiffer penalties.
Our drink driving offence lawyers can help you determine whether any mitigating or aggravating factors apply to your case. Here is a look at these factors.
Aggravating factors add to the severity of your drink driving offence. The court may consider these and impose stiffer penalties. Possible aggravating factors include:
If you think your drink driving offence has aggravating factors, you must consult reliable drink driving offence lawyers.
Mitigating factors are such factors that blunt the nature of your offence. A court may consider these to trim the severity of your penalties. Some mitigating factors are:
Our motoring offence solicitors can help you determine if any mitigating factors are present in your case. With the help of our personal injury solicitors, you can then seek reduced penalties by citing these factors.
If you are suspected of drink-driving, you will be asked to furnish a specimen. A police constable may ask you to do so at the roadside by blowing into a breathalyzer machine. If you fail the test and are suspected of having excess alcohol, you will then be taken to the police station for a second test.
Refusal to undergo the test at the roadside or the police station is an offence in itself. A court may impose penalty points on your license for such refusal. You may also face driving disqualification for a period.
However, if you refuse to provide a sample at the police station, the penalties are more severe. In such a case, you face an unlimited fine, driving disqualification for at least 1 year, and a possible prison sentence of up to 6 months.
You may have a ‘reasonable excuse’ for refusal to provide a sample. You must discuss this with qualified motoring offence solicitors to see if your reason will stand in a court of law. Typically, a person may refuse a sample on medical grounds.
In many drink driving cases, the offender has the option to voluntarily enrol into a ‘Drink Drive Rehabilitation Course.’ This enrollment can be beneficial if you face other penalties. For instance, if you have been disqualified for a year, the court may reduce this period by a quarter for your agreement to enrol.
You must decide whether or not you want to enrol in the course right at the court. The court then specifies the date by which you must complete the course.
Enrollment in a rehabilitation course is completely voluntary. As noted above, it can be very useful in helping you reduce the severity of the penalties you face. Our drink driving offence solicitors can advise you on whether or not this option suits your case.
As noted above, a drink-driving offence carries stiff penalties. In addition to the obvious and immediate penalties, you may also face long-term consequences. Insurance companies may refuse to offer you a policy at the regular rate, citing you as a high-risk individual.
Employers may baulk at hiring you after looking up the conviction on your record. Landlords may be reluctant in letting you rent their place.
This is why you must get in touch with good motoring offence solicitors as soon as you are charged. Qualified personal injury solicitors will help you navigate the legal process and make better decisions.
With the help of the motoring offence solicitors at Adam Bernard’s, you can carefully weigh all your options. Should you plead guilty, can you defend your refusal to take the breath test, was there an emergency involved?
Our personal injury solicitors will consider these and other questions when building a defence for your case.
Get in touch with us today to discuss your case with our personal injury solicitors. There is no time to lose.