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DRINK DRIVING LIMIT

We are drink driving limit solicitors who are experts at defending all types of drink driving limit cases. Call our team of expert drink driving limit solicitors for some free initial advice.

We are drink driving limit solicitors who defend clients throughout England and Wales. If you was stopped by the police and was over the drink driving limit, please contact or dedicated specialist team of drink driving solicitors for some free advice.

The Drink Driving Limit

There are strict alcohol limits for drivers, but it’s impossible to say exactly how many drinks this equals to because each person is different.

The drink driving limits in Scotland are different to the rest of the UK.

The Drink Driving Limit in England, Wales and Northern Ireland is:

35 Micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath; or
80 Milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood; or
107 Milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine.

The Drink Driving Limit in Scotland is:

22 Micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath; or
50 Milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood; or
67 Milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine.

Do you want to talk to the Drink Driving Solicitors who from 1st January 2015 until 17th December 2019…

Breath Drink Driving Cases achieved Not Guilty verdicts for 8 out of 10 Clients!

Blood Drink Driving Cases WON 99%

Urine Drink Driving Cases WON 100%

Failing to Provide a Specimen Cases WON 87%

Drug Driving Sample Cases WON 91%

AND WON 8½ out of 10 of our Alcohol and Drug related cases overall!

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view the sentencing council guidelines

View Sentencing Council Guidelines Drink Driving Penalty

First of all, the UK drink driving limit has been the source of debate for as long is it was first introduced. Perhaps now, more than ever, the legal alcohol limit in the UK is the subject of scrutiny, due to both Ireland and Scotland making the bold move to lower the blood alcohol limit for motorists in the UK to fit in line with the majority of European countries.

So what is the UK drink driving limit?

Definition of a Drink Driving Offence in the UK: It is an offence to drive or attempt to drive a motor vehicle on a road, or other public place after consuming so much alcohol that the proportion of it in a person’s breath exceeds the prescribed limit under. S 5. Road Traffic Act 1988.

Consequently, if you are facing a charge of driving with excess alcohol. The Prosecution will have to prove that you were driving with excess alcohol in your breath, urine or blood. Therefore, the present drink driving limits in the UK are as follows:

  • 35 micrograms of alcohol in 100 ml of breath
  • 80mg of alcohol in 100 ml of blood
  • 107mg of alcohol in 100 ml of urine

When a police officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that a person is driving with excess alcohol. For that reason, he can require that person to perform a roadside breath test. Most importantly, if this provides a positive reading the police will arrest the driver and take them to a police station for a further “evidential test”.

Ordinarily if the drink driving evidential sample is a breath test

Furthermore, the police constable must follow stringent procedures. Therefore, they must obtain two specimens of analysed breath tests and which exceed 35 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. Also, if you blow 39 or less, it is likely that the police will exercise their discretion and release you without charge.

However, if both readings exceed 40 micrograms of alcohol, it is likely that the police will simply proceed to charge the driver with being over the drink driving limit. As a result, the driver must attend Court at a later date once bailed.

In April 2015 the procedure for offering a secondary blood or urine test to replace a borderline breath reading was abolished. That said, if the procedures the police must follow continue to be intricate and this is where our expertise could make the difference in saving your licence.

If you are facing a charge for being over the drink driving limit but were taken to hospital and this is where you gave your sample. Most importantly, please take a look at our drink driving hospital cases page and contact our expert drink driving solicitors today.

When was the UK drink driving limit introduced?

In 1965, due to the number of drink driving road accidents, the government introduced a drink driving limit in Britain. Furthermore, in 1966 a new Road Safety Bill stated the blood alcohol limit was set to 80mg of alcohol in 100cc of blood. This was in the hope that people take more care on the roads and protect themselves as well as other drivers and pedestrians. In 1967 the Transport Minister Barbara Castles introduced the breathalyser to test a drivers’ blood alcohol level.

The first breathalysers were also introduced that year meaning that the process of detecting motorists became much more streamlined than before. However, although it dramatically reduced the number of accidents caused by drink driving, the government still led campaigns to promote the ‘Don’t drink and drive’ message.

This campaign continues today. 2015 has seen the biggest shake up in drink driving limit law since the introduction of breath testing devices. Furthermore, in April 2015 saw the removal of the statutory option of a motorist’s breath sample with an optional blood or urine sample if the breath sample was borderline over the limit at 50 g or below in breath.

However, despite this removal of a safeguard for the accused, the pressure to review and reduce the drink driving limit is mounting more than ever before.

Why lower the drink driving limit?

It may seem an obvious question but when we analyse the countries that have already taken this step, it seems that investing more heavily in education would make more sense. Rather than spending millions on a further law change that would undoubtedly criminalise otherwise law abiding motorists.

Ireland were the first to make the move to lower the drink driving limit back on 8th October 2012. They reduced the level of alcohol permitted from 0.8 (80 mgs/100mls) to 0.5 (50mg/100mls).  They also introduced a further lower limit of 0.2 (20 mgs/ 100mls) “specified” drivers listed below:

Lower Limit of 0.2 (20 mgs/ 100mls) for “Specified” Drivers
A holder of a learner permit
Holder of a first driver licence (for category of vehicle being driven) within 2 years of issue
Holder of a C, C1, D, D1, EB, EC, EC1, ED, ED1 or W category
Holder of a SPSV licence whilst driving in the course of business
Person not holding a driving licence for the category of vehicle being driven
Furthermore if no licence is produced at scene, the person is tested at the lower limit

Reports suggest that despite the limit being lowered, the attitude of Irish motorists towards the drink driving limit has been mixed. With a campaign to allow motorists to drink drive in rural areas being taken to the highest level!

Scotland introduced the lower drink driving limit of 50mg of alcohol in every 100ml of blood at the end of 2014. This was in an effort to reduce the number of alcohol related accidents and fatalities. However, there have been numerous reports since then that the reduction in the drink driving limit has not had the intended effect and offending rates are no different from before the limit was reduced.

Is it time for Brits to shut up and drive (without the drink?!)

Regardless of the arguments for and against lowering the UK drink driving limit. There is no getting away from the fact that along with Malta, we have the highest blood alcohol limit in Europe. Most importantly, as shown in this table below with alcohol limits shown in grams per litre.

It is also notable that many other countries have lower drink driving limit levels for commercial and novice drivers.

CountryStandardCommercial driversNovice drivers
Austria0.50.10.1
Belgium0.50.20.5
Bulgaria0.50.50.5
Croatia0.50.00.0
Cyprus0.20.20.2
Czech Republic0.00.00.0
Denmark0.50.50.5
Estonia0.20.20.2
Finland0.50.50.5
France0.50.5 (0.2 bus drivers)0.2 (from Jul 2015)
Germany0.50.00.0
Greece0.50.20.2
Hungary0.00.00.0
Ireland0.50.20.2
Italy0.50.00.0
Latvia0.50.50.2
Lithuania0.40.00.0 (from Jan 2015)
Luxembourg0.50.20.2
Malta0.80.80.8
Netherlands0.50.50.2
Poland0.20.20.2
Portugal0.50.20.2
Romania0.00.00.0
Slovakia0.00.00.0
Slovenia0.50.00.0
Spain0.50.30.3
Sweden0.20.20.2
UK [i]0.80.80.8
Switzerland0.50.00.0

[i] Scotland 0,5 as of December 2014 for all groups. The rest of the UK (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) remain unchanged.

Last updated: July 2015 from The European Transport Safety Council.

OUR DRINK DRIVING TESTIMONIALS

Bit of a late review as my case was back in August, however, as many other reviews on here state, these guys are brilliant. I thought 100% I would be losing my licence. As a young man in my 20’s, working in a Big business, driving around the country and... Read More

Bit of a late review as my case was back in August, however, as many other reviews on here state, these guys are brilliant. I thought 100% I would be losing my licence. As a young man in my 20’s, working in a Big business, driving around the country and keeping my career moving forward was vital for me. From my initial phone call with Saskia all the way to the court date I had emails and phone calls on a regular basis with Saskia who was so helpful, cannot fault her at all, very easy to talk to and professional, explained all possible outcomes but was very reassuring. My barrister (John) was fantastic, really knew what he was doing and in my opinion was running rings around the prosecution team, so much so that the prosecution actually Withdrew the driving with excess alcohol charge whilst at court. As you can imagine, I was very happy with this result and would recommend Geoffrey Miller’s to anybody facing a similar situation. Great prices for a great service. Thank you all so much.

Alex
Drink Driving
Great Result – Lesser Charge Accepted
Lancashire

My case was for drink driving and I pleaded guilty, but with Geoffrey Miller I was able to obtain the best possible outcome for the band that I sat in. I was really pleased.

Anonymous 20
Drink Driving
Ban Reduced
West Sussex

Honestly – Geoffrey Miller solicitors are amazing and so worth it. My feedback cannot Express how gratifying I am with Geoffrey Miller solicitors as regards the handling of my drink driving case from start to finish especially Jeanette. What a fantastic experience with fantastic result in my drink driving case.... Read More

Honestly – Geoffrey Miller solicitors are amazing and so worth it.
My feedback cannot Express how gratifying I am with Geoffrey Miller solicitors as regards the handling of my drink driving case from start to finish especially Jeanette. What a fantastic experience with fantastic result in my drink driving case.

I got my two drink driving charges dismissed and dropped. Jeanette is fantastic, she is
Very thoughtful, personable and knowledgeable on all aspects of driving offence. Geoffrey Miller uses best barrister. My barrister in my cases was exceptional and his epic performance in the court that got me the result.

It was a long tiring process but the whole team of Geoffrey Miller including Saskia, Victoria Brennan and John Ruane were very helpful.

They are outstanding. Finally I cannot put into words how grateful I am for the help of Geoffrey Miller Solicitors especially Jeanette and my barrister. They are worth every penny and now they are helping to get some court fees back too.

Amazing firm and fantastic result…

Anonymous 57
Drink Driving
Case Discontinued
North East

From my initial conversation with Jeanette Miller back in July to our last call yesterday, dealing with Geoffrey Miller solicitors has been, dare I say, a pleasure. The last few months have been torture, but placing my future in the hands of GMS was the best decision I could have... Read More

From my initial conversation with Jeanette Miller back in July to our last call yesterday, dealing with Geoffrey Miller solicitors has been, dare I say, a pleasure. The last few months have been torture, but placing my future in the hands of GMS was the best decision I could have made. They are ultra professional, honest, diligent and give updates on a regular basis. They dive deeply into the case and highlight the shower that is the CPS. Ellie Taylor has been a shining light when there was not much but darkness. I simply cannot give too much praise. Thank you all at GMS, my appreciation cannot be expressed highly enough.

Alan
Drink Driving
Acquitted
Sunderland

Honestly – these guys are so worth it !! These guys are the very best. My very first call with Jeanette was so reassuring but still, like many, I feared the worse. However with the amazing prowess of the wonderful Defence Barrister they appointed, the trial today actually resulted in... Read More

Honestly – these guys are so worth it !!

These guys are the very best.
My very first call with Jeanette was so reassuring but still, like many, I feared the worse.

However with the amazing prowess of the wonderful Defence Barrister they appointed, the trial today actually resulted in the case being dismissed and all charges dropped !!

It was Marc’s rigorous chasing of the CPS which highlighted their many failures, and my Barristers absolutely epic performance in the court that got me the result I first could only dream of.

Don’t have a doubt, use Geoffrey Miller Solicitors

A J M
Drink Driving
Acquitted
Cambridgeshire

I had already been sentenced and appealed my case and lost the appeal being represented by a different much cheaper law firm so I thought all was lost, I was banned from driving for 29 months, received 150 hours of unpaid work and a hefty fine. I called Geoffrey Millers... Read More

I had already been sentenced and appealed my case and lost the appeal being represented by a different much cheaper law firm so I thought all was lost, I was banned from driving for 29 months, received 150 hours of unpaid work and a hefty fine. I called Geoffrey Millers after my appeal had been lost and spoke to Jeanette and asked if there was anything that could be done. I was advised going to crown court to appeal was an option but would mean a whole new case. It was very daunting and stressful but the staff reassured me at every stage and were very supportive. They got my ban suspended pending trial so I was able to drive again in the months up to the case going to Crown. The investigation and work put into my case was second to none and I never felt that all my questions and stressed out calls to them were too much bother. I attended crown court and was hoping for a reduced ban but the outcome was amazing, I won my special reasons appeal meaning I could keep my licence and the community order was scrapped. I cannot thank them enough for taking on my case even after I had previously lost an appeal and had used a different solicitors, my only regret was that I did not go to them first. Worth every penny and more. Thank you so much to Jeanette, Diana and all the team.

Anonymous 55
Drink Driving
Ban appealed due to special reasons and was won
Manchester

This was an alleged second Drink Driving conviction within 10 years. I was going through a divorce and my world was completely upside down. I had no car, no home and limited access to my family. It was the worst time of my life. Ellie looked after me the whole... Read More

This was an alleged second Drink Driving conviction within 10 years. I was going through a divorce and my world was completely upside down. I had no car, no home and limited access to my family. It was the worst time of my life. Ellie looked after me the whole time and really was a human towards me and gave me the confidence to keep going leading me to plead Not Guilty. The result was exactly as Ellie anticipated which was great news! My life is now back on track after a gruelling 10 months, I cannot thank Ellie, the team at GMS and my Barrister who was just on another level!

Please call GMS because they are fantastic!

Anonymous 54
Drink Driving
Acquitted
Hertfordshire

My feedback cannot express how gratifying I am with Geoffrey Miller Solicitors as regards the handling of my drink driving case from start to finish. I have always held some level of reservation about legal advise particularly with road traffic cases, however GM solicitors have evidently change my skepticism. The... Read More

My feedback cannot express how gratifying I am with Geoffrey Miller Solicitors as regards the handling of my drink driving case from start to finish.

I have always held some level of reservation about legal advise particularly with road traffic cases, however GM solicitors have evidently change my skepticism.

The level of professionalism, optimism, efficiency and value for money from the moment I presented my case to Jeanette S. Miller up to the point John Ruane called to inform my case have been discontinued by the CPS was (5 star) excellent.

Jeanette kept reassuring me there was a strong possibility of success even when I felt all hopes were lost. My biggest thank you goes out to John for the high level of transparency and real-time progress update on my case.

Your firm is top notch and I will always relish the good result delivered for the rest of my life. Yes people might say it is an expensive service, however it was worth the result at the end plus the level of payment flexibility makes it affordable for all.

Please keep up the good work and maintain the level of excellent.

Mr Philip O
Drink Driving
Discontinued Before Trial
London

Unbelievable!!! I have to confess that I was extremely sceptical about achieving a successful outcome, but was reassured all through the process by some excellent staff at Geoffrey Miller that there was hope where I could see none. Today all charges were dropped by the CPS and I can’t thank... Read More

Unbelievable!!! I have to confess that I was extremely sceptical about achieving a successful outcome, but was reassured all through the process by some excellent staff at Geoffrey Miller that there was hope where I could see none. Today all charges were dropped by the CPS and I can’t thank John Ruane and my Barrister enough for their outstanding efforts, life can finally get back to some normality after months of stress and I only have Geoffrey Miller to thank for this.

MW
Drink Driving
CPS offered no evidence
Northamptonshire

Oh my god Geoffrey Miller Solicitors are amazing totally professional reassuring and confident from the very start of proceedings thank you so much regards J CARRARA

Justin Carrara
Drink Driving
Acquitted
Norfolk
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VIEW ALL OUR DRINK DRIVING TESTIMONIALS

†Figures include successful appeals and exclude cases lost that are the subject of appeal as at 17th December 2019.

Not Sure What to Do About Your Drink Driving Offence?

Most people who get in touch with our team of drink driving solicitors are uncertain of their options. They are unaware of any legal defences that may be available and find it difficult to believe that it might be possible to defend being over the drink driving limit they face, by using loopholes that apply to the rich and famous! Most importantly, we do represent celebrities but we also represent many hardworking motorists like Brian and we want to help you make the right choice about what you do next about your drink driving limit charge.

We are always more than happy to chat things through with potential clients Free of Charge. Call us now on Freephone 0800 1389 123 to speak to one of our drink driving limit offence solicitors. It is only once you decide to instruct us that payment will become necessary and we can often arrange instalment plans to assist you. Most importantly, many satisfied clients have thanked us for offering this free consultation service. Because it has prevented them from following inaccurate non-expert advice which could have led to them accepting a driving ban unnecessarily.

Browse our site and get in touch

If you would like to spend more time browsing on the site before you get in touch, make sure you have a look at our specialist motor offence guidance features such as our drink driving ban calculator. This will help you to determine the drink driving penalty you may face if convicted.

We think we are simply the best in the business but if you are not satisfied in taking our word for it. Our unique “ask our clients” testimonials scheme allows you to contact previous clients of the firm to seek a completely independent reference about us and what we might be able to do for you.

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Geoffrey Miller Solicitors are specialists defending drivers nationwide for all types of driving offences. Call our team of expert driving offence solicitors for some free initial advice.

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DRINK DRIVING BAN CALCULATOR

The Magistrates’ Court Sentencing Guidelines is a tool used by the Magistrates to decide on penalty. Try our drink driving ban calculator or our speeding ban calculator to give you a rough idea of the penalty you could incur…

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Based on our 2020 market research you can use this form to calculate the likely costs including increased car insurance cost if you were to be convicted for drink driving...

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A CRB check is a Criminal Record Bureau Check and is designed for employers to run on employees or potential employees. It’s now changed to a DBS check which stands for Disclosure and Barring Service. Use our DBS Check Calculator to calculate if your caution or conviction will show up on a DBS check...

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