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About legalmad

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  1. I want to make clear I am NOT offering legal advice here - I wish to draw people's attention to an area of law that the general public are often not aware of - but the DVLA exploits this lack of knowledge to often bully people into submission for the vast majority of their fines. I have seen countless examples on here, and I myself have also been on the receiving end of it, and the routine typically goes - 1. DVLA threatens to prosecute driver for alleged offence (late licensing penalty, keeping an unregistered vehicle on the public road, various offences under VERA, etc.) 2. Initially they scare the person by claiming that they could be subject to all sorts of criminal penalties and maximum fines if found guilty 3. Then they offer some reduced out of court settlement offer that if you pay on time will let them agree to close the matter 4. Some people scared pay up immediately, others who begin by making their case only continue to be threatened and ultimately pay in order to avoid the fear of going to court In the vast majority of cases the result is the same - the driver gets fleeced by the DVLA. What I want to bring to your attention is that all offences DVLA can/threatens to prosecute people for in relation to vehicle registration are SUMMARY OFFENCES. Please do not be confused with motoring offences prosecuted by the police such as driving under the influence, failing to name a driver, etc. as these can be either way offences. SUMMARY OFFENCES Under Section 1 of the Magistrates' Court Act 1980 proceedings for a summary offence must be commenced within 6 months of the alleged offence being committed. In my case they contacted me last November threatening to prosecute me for an alleged VERA offence that took place in January (11 months prior). I told them that despite the fact that I protested my innocence they would not be able to prosecute me as they had not commenced proceedings within 6 months for this Summary offence, so I would not be entertaining their allegations. I continued to receive threats for a while but ultimately they shied away and said the case had been closed giving no reason - the reason was because they knew all along they were unable to prosecute me at that time and their threats were nothing more than hot air trying it on to try and extract some money from me. In a great number of cases I have seen people post on here the offence being alleged occurred much longer than 6 months ago and they are still playing ball with DVLA who are simply trying to get them to fork up for something they no longer have any authority to prosecute. LIMITATION PERIOD - 6 MONTH RULE I have to make it clear that if DVLA are contacting you within 6 months of the offence they are alleging then please do not misunderstand what I'm saying - DVLA can and do prosecute people where they are able to AND THE TIME LIMITS APPLY! If however you are like me and many others on the back end of DVLA's inefficient backlog, and they are contacting you about an allegation that occurred more than 6 months ago then keep in mind they are now statute barred from bringing any prosecution against you so their threats are effectively lies to get you to pay them as there is very little action they now have the ability to take against you. In this case, I would always simply tell them that I'm innocent however as the limitation period has now expired for them to commence proceedings against me I will take any further threats of prosecution in these circumstances to be false statements and I will not be entertaining this matter further.
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