Believe it or not, most motorists are guilty of this offence most times they get behind the wheel. A quick glance down at your sat nav or spend too long looking out the side window and you're guilty. Obviously, hardly anyone gets prosecuted in those circumstances, but have a bump or a near miss, and it's a different story. If you have been summonsed or charged with careless driving or driving without due care and attention, get in touch to see how we can help.
Careless Driving / Driving Without Due Care and Attention - Key Facts
- There is actually only one offence here. Under s3 Road Traffic Act 1988, the offence is committed if you drive without due care and attention or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the road or place.
- The test for whether the driving was careless or not is if the driving falls below what would be expected by a careful and competant driver.
- The maximum sentence is an unlimited fine (find out more about fines here).
- The least serious examples will normally lead to 3-4 penalty points on your licence. Serious examples of careless driving will result in driving bans up to 12 months.
- It can only be dealt with in the Magistrates' Court.
What Defences Are Available?
There are a few defences available to careless driving. We will work with you to identify if any of these defences apply to you. These defences can include:
- The driving wasn't careless or inconsiderate - just because the Police or prosecution say the driving was careless, it doesn't mean that it was. Maybe someone else was to blame, were your responding to an emergency or peharps it is just a matter of opinion.
- Good old fashioned mistaken identity - sometimes the Police just get it wrong. Maybe you weren't the one behind the wheel? Maybe the witness noted the registration number down incorrectly.
What if I Don't Have a Defence?
If you are guilty of careless driving and don't have a defence, we can still help. Having an exprienced Solicitor represent you at court can make a huge difference to how you are dealt with by the Court. This is how we can help:
- Plea in Mitigation - speaking on your behalf and explaining your circumstances can mean that the court will know how to deal with you fairly. This could result in a smaller punishment and/or a reduced driving ban. Do you need your licence? Can you afford to run the risk?