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Disqualification; Revocation; or Penalty Points!

January 24, 2017 by in category Disqualification, Fixed Penalty, News, Revocation, Totting Up tagged as with 0 and 1
Home > News > Disqualification > Disqualification; Revocation; or Penalty Points!
disqualification revocation penalty points

Many of us when faced with a motoring offence prosecution can only wonder what negative impacts the penalty imposed is going to have on our personal lives, work life and our relationships. The growing importance of being mobile to get to meetings and social engagements are more prevalent than ever. What implications would the loss of your licence mean for you? Would you be able to meet deadlines, visit family or enjoy your social life like you currently can?

How might I be disqualified?

There are a few ways that a motorist can be disqualified. Some of the most common are:

(a)  A Mandatory Disqualification

This type of disqualification is common in cases of drug driving, drink driving, or failing to provide a specimen with a minimum mandatory ban of 12 months for first time offenders.

Offences such as dangerous driving also carry a mandatory minimum 12 month disqualification but with an extended retest once the ban is over.

(b)  A Discretionary Disqualification

This form of disqualification is more likely to occur in cases like speeding (where aggravating factors may increase your culpability) although a discretionary disqualification can apply to any endorseable (penalty points are applicable) offence.

(c)  A Disqualification through the Totting – Up process

When your licence has 12 or more points endorsed on it within a three year period. The starting point is a 6 months ban but this can be longer if you have been banned for 56 days or more within the preceding 3 years.

The Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988: What does it say?

If the road offence that you committed involves a mandatory disqualification, the minimum period you will be looking at would be twelve months. Unless you plan to defend the case, the only way to avoid a mandatory disqualification is to argue ‘Special reasons.’ This may either significantly reduce your disqualification period or convince the Court to impose penalty points instead of a ban.

With regards to a discretionary disqualification, the Court can decide the appropriate amount of time to disqualify you depending on the circumstances of the offence including any mitigating or aggravating factors.

Alternatively, if you are facing disqualification through totting up, you are looking at a disqualification period starting at six months unless the court accepts that this length of ban would cause you or others exceptional hardship.

What can I do to reduce my period of disqualification?

It depends what type of offence you have been convicted of.

With drink driving offences the court can offer a drink drive rehabilitation course which if an offender agrees to go on the court can reduce the period of a disqualification by 25% once the course is completed.

You may also apply for the early return of your licence midway through your penalty by making an application to the court. There are certain timeframes applicable to this.

Totting-Up Ban

This is the most common way that you may find yourself facing a disqualification.

‘Totters’ acquire penalty  points on their licence for numerous offences, be it speeding, running a red light or using mobile devices behind the wheel. It can be a stressful time if you are close to the twelve points limit when the totting up ban would be imposed.

Also, contained in the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988, is the ability for Courts to accept mitigating reasons known as exceptional hardship in order to reduce the length of the ban or avoid disqualification altogether. We have saved the licence of many motorists with well in excess of 12 points by raising these arguments.

New Drivers (Driving for less than two years)

New drivers have more reason to be concerned by penalty points than a ban. If they acquire six points or more within two years of passing their driving test, they face the revocation of their licence.

Revocation is not the same as Disqualification. It involves the withdrawal of a motorist’s licence with no end date by when they can drive again. On the plus side, you can immediately apply for a provisional licence and take your test the same day that your licence is revoked. The down side is we are yet to come across many new drivers who relish the prospect of taking their driving test all over again!

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