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Aretnap last won the day on August 22 2016

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About Aretnap

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  1. If the speed gun is pointed at you from an angle it would indeed affect the accuracy of the reading... by making your speed appear lower than it actually was. So that wouldn't be a good argument to reply on. (For those who remember A-level physics what the speed gun is measuring is the component of the vector of your velocity in the direction of the speed gun. Which is the cosine of the angle between your heading and the speed gun. If you're doing 40mph the speed gun will show a reading of 40 if you are driving straight towards it, 38.6 at an angle of 15 degrees, 34.6 at an angle of 30 degrees etc. So any error caused by the angle always works in your favour.)
  2. The normal fine for each offence is a band B fine, whihc means 100% of his weekly post-tax income. This would be reduced by a third if he pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity (by post if he wasn't attending court). So did he complete and return the paperwork that came with the original summons/SJPN? In particular (1) Did he indicate that he was pleading guilty? If not, he wouldn't have got the one third discount (2) Did he fill in the statement of means with details of his income? If not, his income would be assumed to be £440/week - the notional national average. Prosecution costs of £85 and victim surcharge of 10% of the fine (rounded to the nearest fiver) are standard in the circumstances. It sounds like he didn't complete the paperwork. Rather than appealing and risking additional costs, his first course of action might be to contact the court and ask if the fines can be reconsidered if he submits a statement of means now. That's assuming his income is lower than £440/week - if it's higher he might be best to pay and keep schtum!
  3. The Gatso's primary speed measurement comes from the radar device - the distance you have travelled between the two photographs simply acts as a secondary or back-up check. The markings on the road look pretty clear to me. And even if they weren't clear there is an approved technique for carrying out the secondary check using photogrammetry - so the lines are only there for convenience, they are not actually required for a successful prosecution. That would be Highway Code Rule 123 - "The 30 mph limit usually applies to all traffic on all roads with street lighting unless signs show otherwise". The actual law is found in the Road Traffic Regulation Act sections 81 and 82. Well, the streetlights themselves are the signs that it's a 30mph limit. Road sign regulations actually prohibit putting 30 repeaters on a road with street lighting (other than the combined 30/speed camera sign which they have there). It would be impractical to put them on every road in towns and cities, and putting them on some street-lit roads but not others would probably cause more confusion than it solved. How would you decide which ones to put them on? How would you deal with all the people saying "yeah, but this road doesn't have repeaters but that other vaguely similar road does, so surely it's unfair to prosecute me for speeding"? Overall it would just end up diluting the clear rule that a road with streetlights is 30mph unless signs show otherwise. I'm afraid that nothing you've said suggests that you have any defence. Pleading guilty and sounding contrite is probably your best option.
  4. A NIP is only required for certain, specified offences. (They are offences to which Section 1 of the Road Traffic Offenders Act applies - listed here) Use of a vehicle in a dangerous condition is not one of those offences. So no NIP is required at all - verbal or written, at the time of the offence or 14 days later. The whole question of NIPs or 14 day timelines simply doesn't arise. The only relevant deadline is that in order to prosecute the OP for the offence they have to initiate court proceedings within 6 months, ie by late December.
  5. Presumably you mean driving while disqualified. Driving without insurance has a maximum penalty of a fine and a driving ban - it cannot attract a prison sentence, suspended or otherwise. From a criminal viewpoint the lack of insurance is very much secondary to the fact that he was driving while disqualified - that has a maximum penalty of 6 months in prison (though a community order and/or suspended sentence would be more likely unless the OP is a repeat offender).
  6. The law is actually pretty clear in that if you show a valid insurance certificate which covers the driver's use of the vehicle, then the police have no right to seize the vehicle. End of. What the police believe is irrelevant at that point. Of course the police might misunderstand the wording on the certificate, or believe reasonably but incorrectly that it's not a valid certificate, and decide to seize the vehicle. But if they do then they do so at their peril - if their suspicions turn out to be wrong then they will have acted unlawfully and they will be liable for the costs incurred by the vehicle owner/driver as a result of the unlawful seizure. The relevant case Lay is Pryor v Chief Constable of Greater Manchester. In that case the police thought that the policy did not cover what the certificate said it covered, so they called up the insurance company to check and were told that the driver was not covered to drive the car. The call centre bloke was wrong, the policy did cover the driver, so the Court of Appeal held that the police were in the wrong and that they were liable for the return of the impound fee, along with associated costs. The same principles would seem to apply here; assuming that the OP is correct in that the insurance policy did cover the driver's use of teh vehicle.
  7. No it isn't. The point is that it's an alternative to prosecution or a fixed penalty, so you don't get a conviction and you don't get points on your licence. It has nothing to do with insurance, and the people who organise the courses have no power to decide what insurers can and can't ask about. Well, whether or not you're required to disclose the information is a different question from how likely you would be to be caught if you didn't disclose it. It's true that as lies you could tell your insurer go, this is one of the ones you'd probably be more likely to get away with, as insurers don't (for now) have access to the record of who's done them. But you could still be in trouble if you post about your course on social media, or you get a quote with it declared, then remove it, or if you blurt out the truth without thinking when they ask you about it. What rules say they shouldn't? Legally the starting point is that insurers can base their premiums on anything they like, unless there's a law which says they can't. The Equality Act prevents them loading premiums on the grounds of race, or sex. The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act prevents them from loading them due to (most) convictions which are more than 5 years old. What law do you think prevents them from loading premiums for attending a speed awareness course?
  8. No reason to expect a court date. Anything up to 85mph in a 60 limit would normally be dealt with by a fixed penalty (I've 3 points and £100).
  9. Glad it got sorted out. The third party driver was never at risk of having to put her hand in her own pocket though, assuming she was properly insured. Her insurer is obliged to pay for all claims which are successfully made against her, so while they can say to Albany "you're having a giraffe - take it to court if you like", if Albany do take it to court and win then they can't continue refusing to pay. So while on paper the claim might be you vs the other driver, in practice it's actually Albany vs her insurer, and it's her insurer who ends up paying if she loses.
  10. There is potentially a defence - if it was not reasonably practical for her to provide the information within the 28 days then she has a defence, provided she did provide it as soon as reasonably practical (if it was ever reasonably practical). Precisely what is reasonably practical isn't defined by the law and is a question for the court to make a judgement call on based on the specific circumstances. If she was seriously ill in hospital for many weeks with no access to her home or her mail then it would be a very hard hearted magistrate who thought that she should have been able to respond to the NIP. On the other hand if she was just a bit run down after giving birth and let things get on top of her then it would be harder to argue that it wasn't practical for her to open her mail and spend a few minutes posting a form. Somewhere between those two scenarios there's a grey area where the court might decide either way. If she's convicted then 6 points are mandatory, and if she gets 6 points then revocation of her licence is automatic - the court has no power to waive it because of the hardship it would cause. So she has little to lose by trying to argue the point.
  11. You're misreading the guidelines (admittedly they're badly written) and missing the bit about fixed penalties. For a 70 limit a fixed penalty will normally be offered at speeds of 95 or lower, assuming the OP is eligible for one (ie he isn't already on 9 points or more). 3 points and £100. An instant summons would only come into play at 96 or above. The OP can only really wait and see what comes through the door. If it wasn't a traffic officer them there's always the chance that he might decide that it's not worth the paperwork, and that he'll forget about it.
  12. Your insurance documents will say when you need to tell your insurer about the points - with most insurers it won't be until your renewal date. However telling them now means that there's no risk of forgetting and shouldn't affect your premium until you renew. Three points for speeding won't usually make a lot of difference to your premium anyway - just use the comparison sites to shop around. It's not as if you're a drunk driver or some other pariah who the mainstream insurers won't touch. If the police only cared about making money they'd have sent you on a course - that way they keep the course fees (allegedly to pay for traffic enforcement). Fines and fixed penalties go straight to to the treasury, where they are swallowed up as a tiny drop in the great ocean of general government spending. There's no benefit to the police in handing out fixed penalties.
  13. If the OP (or rather his wife) really has done all he could to identify the driver then he does indeed have a defence to the case and no offence has been committed (other than the red light offence of course). However the law puts the burden on the defendant to prove that he/she did all he could, and "all he could" is a higher bar than a lot of people realise. The defence is not impossible to make, but it's not easy either.
  14. Your problem is that too many people who take their legal advice from a bloke in the pub think that a brilliant wheeze for getting out of speeding tickets is to say "sorry, can't remember who was driving, could have been either of us". As a result magistrates tend to treat the claim that two grown adults can't remember a journey they made a few days earlier with a healthy degree of scepticism, and while it's not impossible to defend these cases you are certainly on the back foot, and you be to be unusually credible when giving evidence to defend them. And the penalty for failing to identify the driver is significantly harsher than the penalty for most pending or red light offences - precisely to discourage people from playing sillybuggers over it. If you decide to defend the charge then the onus is on you to persuade the court that you did everything you reasonably could be done to work out who was driving. Asking for a photo was one of the things you could have done, certainly, but by no means the only one. You say it was a strange town - but you were given the time and location of the incident. Did you look up the location on a map or on Google Streetviiew? Was it on he way to the ground or on the way to the shop? How does the time fit with your journey? And so on and so forth. No point trying to complain about the prosecutor - the offer you've been given is perfectly standard and if you really can't honestly name a driver then you're not being forced to do so. However the prosecutor sees people every day who claim not to know who was driving, and the vast majority are either lying or have made almost no effort to find out. They would be easily broken down under cross-examination, and the prosecutor is in the main doing them a favour by giving them a chance to think again. As far as perjury goes, that only applies if you provide information which you know to be untrue. If you name the person who you believe was probably driving then you're not committing perjury, even if your belief turns out to be incorrect. It's your decision of course, but the penalties for failing to name the driver are severe (and the insurance penalties are even worse - the MS90 code makes insurers wonder what you did that was so terrible that £600 and 6 points seemed like a better option than owning up to it) so in your position I'd probably take the easy option ad take my best guess at who was driving.
  15. The offences he could be charged with would be: Driving without insurance (6-8 points and a fine) Driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence (3-6 points and a fine) For you it would be Causing or permitting driving without insurance (6-8 points and a fine) Causing or permitting driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence (3-6 points and a fine Even if you are both charged with both offences, in 99% of cases you will only get the points for the more serious offence - so most likely 6-8 points each (probably 6) for the insurance offences. It won't stop your brother getting a licence, but when he does get one the 6 points will remain in play with respect to the New Drivers Act. In practice this means that rather than having the usual 6 points to play with, if he gets any points at all in the first two years after passing his test he'll revert to a provisional licence and have to take his test again. If you passed your own test less than two years ago 6 points would also see your own licence revert to learner status and you'd have to retake your test. Probably won't do either of your insurance premiums much good either. There's no need for you to be given any paperwork at the roadside, though if you've been given a producer you'll have to go to a police station with your licence/insurance documents. You might get a fixed penalty through the post, but possibly not as it was more than one offence - if you don't then they have 6 months to begin court proceedings. The most lenient thing he *could* have done would have been to give you both a dressing down and send you on your way without making a report... but no insurance is taken very seriously these days so you would have to have caught him in an exceptionally good mood for that to have happened. As above he'd have been within his rights to have seized the car, so I suppose by not doing that he was showing a bit of leniency.
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