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New driver motoring offences

The cost of getting a licence for a new driver can be substantial when combining the cost of the lessons, insurance, car, and actual tests. Once a new driver obtains a licence, they must be extremely careful from a safety perspective but also in relation to committing any offences. We handle an extensive number of enquiries from parents of young drivers as well as young drivers.

It should be noted, however, that the probationary driving period is not aimed at young drivers, but rather at inexperienced drivers irrelevant of their age. New drivers face a 2-year probationary period due to that inexperience. Within this time frame, accruing six or more points on your licence will result in automatic revocation by the DVLA. This is different from a ban, so it means that a licence can be reapplied for, but it is in essence starting from scratch sitting practical and theory test again and it is also likely to have a severe impact on the cost of insurance.

 

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Newly qualified driver offences

Statistically, a large proportion of offences are committed by younger and invariably inexperienced drivers. The most common offences include speeding, driving without insurance, failing to identify a driver, contravening red lights, driving without valid licence, driving whilst using a mobile phone, driving whilst under the influence of drugs and alcohol and driving with defective tyres as well as other offences.

The Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act 1995 provides that new drivers who acquire six penalty points, or more, in the first two years after passing their first full UK test will have their licence revoked until they pass a further test (including theory test). This is to effectively ensure a standard of driving for new drivers and to protect the public.

This principal also applies to those with a provisional licence, as points can be carried over onto the probationary licence. Revocation of this type only applies where the offence causing the points to be taken into account is committed during the driver’s two-year probationary period.

By way of example, if we were to imagine a series of offences taking place across a period of time while a driver is taking lessons and - later - receiving their full licence:

14/02/2018 - Fixed penalty for driving without insurance - 6 penalty points

14/03/2018 - Passes theory

14/05/2018 - Passes full test - full licence issued with 6 penalty points on

31/05/2018 - Fixed penalty for speeding - licence revoked - triggers the new driver provisions

In such circumstances, the driver would need to re-take both the practical and theory test.

How we help?

The court can be asked to use their discretion to award a short-term ban in lieu of the penalty points. This - in effect - circumvents the new driver provisions and taking away the need for a re-test. The driver would still be penalised, but perhaps in a way that is more proportionate by imposing a ban that would not necessitate the need for a full re-test to be taken. This may be more appropriate where the driver is coming to the end of the probationary period, but the points are imposed after that period. We will always consider whether there are any defences available to any charges laid, however the most effective representation can often be by way of offering solid mitigation following a guilty plea to minimise the overall impact.

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