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Penalties For Drink Driving

The penalties for any conviction are a minimum disqualification from driving for 12 months and can be up to 60 months, (that’s a five year drink driving ban), if it is your second offence in ten years. This could also apply if it is your first conviction and your reading is very high.

Courts can also impose additional penalties of Community Orders and even custodial sentences depending on how high your reading is.

Driving Whilst Unfit Through Drink or Drugs

If there is evidence of impairment either because of drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol, you may find yourself facing this charge.

Drink Driving Laws

The test here is again one of impairment i.e. that you could not drive properly; this can be evidenced in various ways by the police and prosecution but remember, once again there are strict procedures to be followed at the police station both in impairment testing and the breath test procedure.

There may be other areas to challenge relating to any blood or urine samples both in relation to the procedure and the introduction of it into evidence against you.


The term ‘drugs’ doesn’t have to mean illegal substances, it can be something as simple as your own medication!

It can be any intoxicant other than alcohol that affects the self control of the human body resulting in impairment of your ability to drive properly. So even if you are taking prescribed medication, you could fall into this category.

However, this offence is often very difficult for the prosecution to prove and there are defences and ways of challenging the evidence.

Failing to Provide a Sample For Analysis

This can be refusal at the roadside in relation to a screening test or at the police station when a sample of breath, blood or urine has been requested.

It may even be at a hospital following an accident.

But what constitutes a ‘refusal’?

You may think that you haven’t refused but technically you have; Alternatively, you may think you have when in fact, you haven’t.

Failing to provide a sample for analysis is treated very seriously by the courts and carries a minimum disqualification period of 12 months. This can be up to 60 months, (that’s five years), if it’s your second offence in ten years.

Depending on how the Court views your refusal, it can also carry a custodial sentence.

There are ways in which evidence can be challenged; the correct procedures may not have been followed, there may be problems with analysis equipment or samples that haven’t been handled correctly, any of which may result in you being able to avoid or minimise any penalty.

So why not give us a call without any obligation to discuss your case.

Drunk in Charge of a Motor Vehicle

The 1988 Road Traffic Act makes it an offence to be drunk and ‘in charge’ of a mechanically propelled vehicle or a motor vehicle;

What is classed as ‘in charge’ is not defined within the Act and is very much a matter of fact and degree.

The prosecution authorities are not required to prove you were likely to drive whilst unfit or over the limit but it is a valid defence if you can show that there was no such likelihood.

There are two distinct classes of cases depending on whether you are the lawful owner or possessor of the vehicle or the recent driver; the court will also consider the question of your ‘control’ of the vehicle.

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