Drink Driving Offences

Drink driving offences – Motoring Law Solicitors ready to help you.

If you have been stopped by the Police, breathalysed and are facing a drink driving offence, it is important that you seek legal advice at the earliest opportunity to allow our experienced motoring law team to help you.

We can advise on whether the preliminary breath test and evidential tests have been performed properly on the approved testing machines.  We can advise you as to whether charges are properly brought and as to whether there might be any defence or special reasons that might mitigate the length of the disqualification.  We can also go through with you the factors the court are likely to take account of when sentencing, for example whether there was a genuine emergency, spiked drinks or a very short distance was driven.

In England and Wales the alcohol limit for drivers is:-

  • 80 milligrammes per 100 millilitres of blood
  • 35 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath
  • 107 milligrammes per 100 millilitres of urine

The offence of driving or attempting to drive with excess alcohol is triable only in the Magistrates’ Court.  The Magistrates must disqualify for at least 12 months upon a guilty plea or conviction although there is also the possibility of the drink driving awareness course which if successfully completed shall reduce the length of any ban by 25%.  Depending upon the offence seriousness the penalty is also likely to include a fine, a community order or a custodial sentence.  If you receive a second conviction for the offence of driving with excess alcohol within 10 years, the minimum disqualification is at least three years.

Sometimes it is possible to advance “special reasons” for not disqualifying.  A “special reason” is one connected to the offence and not the Offender.  A special reason must fulfil the following criteria:-

  • It must be mitigating or extenuating circumstances
  • It must not amount in law to a defence to the charge
  • It must be directly connected with the commission of the offence
  • The matter must be one that the court ought properly to take into account when imposing punishment

It is always advisable if charged with driving with excess alcohol or such related offences to have the case looked at to see if the proper plea should be one of not guilty.  Even if you are pleading guilty as most drivers do, representation by an experienced advocate is essential in this type of case.  If you are facing such a charge, call the Motorist Defence Team at Rothera Sharp on 0800 088 6280.