Changes to speeding laws

SPEEDING fines in the UK have changed last month which could see motorists having to fork out more cash if they are caught exceeding the stated speed limit. Under the new rules, drivers can be charged up to 175 per cent of their weekly wage for a major offence or up to 50 per cent for a minor breach of the speed limit. There is a cap of £1,000 on minor speeding offences or up to £2,500 for major ones. A three band system will determine the severity of an offence and corresponds to different charges, which are calculated on a percentage basis. A minor offence constitutes a band A charge. Band A charges are for drivers who exceed the stated speed limit between one and 10mph. So, if a driver travels 31mph up to 40mph in a 30mph zone, they can be charged between 25 per cent and 75 per cent of their weekly income. Drivers who exceed the stated speed limit by 11mph up to 20mph will be charged between 75 per cent and 125 per cent of their wage. Major offences, which are for speed limit breaches of up 22mph and above will be charged between 125 per cent and 175 per cent of their weekly wage. in addition to the variable fee, motorists could land themselves with a driving offence of this nature, they could also receive between three and six penalty points. Band A offenders can receive three penalty points on their licence, band B drivers can land themselves between four and six points, while band C offences carry a six penalty point charge. For any motorist who has held their licence for less than two years, a band C offence is enough for them to lose their licence and face an immediate driving ban.

Band ranges

Drivers need to be aware that the court should then consider further adjustment for any aggravating or mitigating factors. The following is a non-exhaustive list of additional factual elements providing the context of the offence and factors relating to the offender. The court is then to identify whether any combination of these, or other relevant factors, should result in an upward or downward adjustment from the sentence arrived at so far.

Factors increasing seriousness
Statutory aggravating factors:
* Previous convictions, having regard to a) the nature of the offence to which the conviction relates and its relevance to the current offence; and b) the time that has elapsed since the conviction
* Offence committed whilst on bail
Other aggravating factors:
* Offence committed on licence or post
sentence supervision
* poor road or weather conditions
* Driving LGV, HGV, PSV etc.
* Towing caravan/trailer
* Carrying passengers or heavy load
* Driving for hire or reward
* Evidence of unacceptable standard of driving over and above speed
* Location e.g. near school
* High level of traffic or pedestrians in the vicinity
Factors reducing seriousness or reflecting personal mitigation
* no previous convictions or no relevant/recent convictions
* good character and/or exemplary conduct
* genuine emergency established

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* Must endorse and may disqualify. If no disqualification impose 3 – 6 points
* Where an offender is driving grossly in excess of the speed limit the court should consider a disqualification in excess of 56 days.

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