Motoring offences are not always dealt with at the time of the offence. Often alleged road traffic offences are caught on camera. In these circumstances you will be notified by way of a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) sent under section 172 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.
A pre-requisite of prosecution is that the NIP arrives no more than 14 days after the date of the alleged offence. The 14 day rule only applies to the registered keeper. Technically, no one else (i.e. you, the driver) requires Notice of Intended Prosecution in writing. So, if you are not the registered keeper of the vehicle, you do not have an argument. The only obligation that rests on the Police is to serve it at the address of the registered keeper. As long as they send the notice to arrive within 14 days to the address they will satisfy their obligations. If the NIP is not served in that timeframe then you can argue that the Notice is defective and no prosecution can legitimately follow.
However, be warned, even if you have a legitimate defence in relation to the offence, or the NIP is served out of time, it does not entitle you to ignore the Notice of Intended Prosecution as it serves two purposes. Firstly, warning that someone may be prosecuted for a speeding offence and secondly, requesting driver information.
If you do not deal with the request for driver information or reject the notice in its entirety, then you commit an offence of failing to provide driver information. This offence carries 6 points on your licence and a fine…even if you weren’t speeding and even if the NIP was served late.
Once the driver has been ascertained, you will then have a decision to make. You can take the speed awareness course if offered or alternatively you can pay a fixed penalty fine and receive 3 penalty points on your Licence. If a conviction for the offence might result in you facing disqualification from driving you will receive a summons to Court. You will also have the option to take the matter to Court if you do not accept guilt. Should you take the case to Court and lose, you could receive a far greater fine, Court costs and increased penalty points. You may even risk disqualification, depending on your driving history and the speed you were driving.
Arguing a Notice of Intended Prosecution is defective can involve both reference to the statutory provisions and Case Law. For the reasons outlined above, it is not a decision to be taken lightly. If you think you may have a legitimate argument then please contact one of our expert motoring lawyers. We will be happy to discuss fixed fee representation to defend your case. Poole Alcock has expert motoring solicitors based in offices across Cheshire, the North West and Midlands, including Birmingham, Manchester, Chester, Crewe, Alsager, Congleton, Sandbach, Nantwich and Wilmslow.
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Derek MacDonald is a Partner in the Crime department. He graduated from Birmingham University in 1989 with honours, qualifying as a Solicitor in 1994. He has practiced Criminal Law in Cheshire for over 25 years. He has specialises in this field and joined the firm as a Partner in 2003. Derek is a qualified duty solicitor and holds the Law Society Criminal Litigation Accreditation.
As a Specialist in Road traffic he regularly deals with all motoring matters including, Speeding, Drink/Drug Driving allegations, Special Reasons Arguments and Exceptional Hardship Applications.
Derek can advise right from the outset in these matters including attending at Police Stations and Custody facilities with defendants for Police interviews under Caution.
Derek will provide support to clients for;
Police Station investigations
Magistrates Court Proceedings
Crown Court Proceedings
Tim Graduated from Staffordshire University in 1999 with honours and joined Poole Alcock in 2002, where he completed his training contract and qualified in 2004. Tim has specialised in Criminal Defence since qualification providing expert advice and representation for Crime and Motoring cases. Tim is a qualified duty Solicitor and hold the Law Society Criminal Litigation Accreditation.
In a previous life Tim was a driving instructor and as such has a unique passion for all things motoring. Tim is well respected throughout his work life. Tim is a technical lawyer and a formidable advocate, with a very high success rate at Court.
Tim specialises in exceptional hardship applications and special reasons arguments. Tim attends Court virtually every day for clients on the full range of criminal matters.
Tim can provide support to clients for;
Police Station investigations
Magistrates Court Proceedings
Defending Local Authority Prosecution.Contact Me
Chris joined the firm in 2006, having previously studied Law with Criminology at Keele University and the Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in York. Chris carried out a training contract with the firm, qualifying into the Criminal Defence department in 2009.
Chris is a qualified Solicitor defending clients in the Police Stations and Courts of Cheshire and Greater Manchester. He became an experienced and confident trial advocate with a great reputation amongst his clients and peers. Chris is a qualified duty solicitor and accredited police station representative. He is currently responsible for the supervision of the criminal team in his role as Head of Department.
In 2016 Chris took on the role of IT Manager and is responsible for:
Lesley Barnett is a Solicitor in the Crime Department. Her career in criminal defence started in 1995 as a Legal Executive. She obtained police station accreditation in 1996.
Graduating from Staffordshire University in 2009, Lesley qualified as a solicitor in 2010. She is a duty solicitor and a higher courts’ advocate.
Lesley represents clients at the police station, Magistrates’ Court and Crown Court. She has experience of dealing with cases ranging from theft and public order through to drugs supply, fraud and murder.
Support for clients can be provided in the following areas:-
Police station investigation.
Crown Court.Contact Me
Serena graduated from Nottingham Trent University in 2005, with honours, and subsequently qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive in 2012. She joined the firm in 2006 and qualified as an accredited police station representative in 2007.
Serena manages Crown Court cases on a daily basis and has experience in dealing with clients accused of murder, manslaughter, serious assaults, rape and sexual assaults, and complex fraud cases. In addition to this, she regularly deals with post conviction Proceeds of Crime Confiscation applications – under POCA 2002.
Serena is an experienced police station representative and has dealt with a wide range of cases for clients either under arrest or interviewed on a voluntary basis, including allegations of benefit fraud.
Serena also has specialist experience in dealing with clients who wish to make applications opposing the disclosure of information from third parties with regards to Disclosure and Barring Service checks, and has a high success rate for these applications.
Serena holds the Law Society Criminal Litigation Accreditation for Magistrates Court representation and as such is duty qualified. She represents clients for motoring offences including speeding, drink driving as well as exceptional hardship and special reasons arguments.
Serena will provide support to clients for:
Stuart graduated in 1977 with honours and qualified in 1980. Stuart joined the firm in 2014 and has practiced Criminal Law in Cheshire for over 35 years. Stuart has a huge reputation and a vast wealth of knowledge and experience with his chosen field. Stuart is a qualified duty solicitor and holds the Law Society Criminal Litigation Accreditation.
Stuart has an excellent reputation for knowledge and understanding of criminal law. He has an excellent success rate in defending all manner of criminal cases both at the Police Station and Court. Stuart regularly conducts trials at the Magistrates’ Court and had a reputation for being tenacious and forthright.
Stuart has successfully defended many motoring matters before the court. Exceptional hardship applications, special reason arguments, speeding offences and drink and drug driving allegations are all regular daily hearings for Stuart.
Stuart can support Clients for;
Police Station investigations
Magistrates Court Proceedings
Youth Court Proceedings
Defending Local Authority ProsecutionsContact Me
I have had to use your services at a very difficult time and having been a solicitor I understand the pressure you work under. The entire team has been professional and understanding and you should be proud of the excellent service you provide. I must give special mention to Damian who I felt had a superb customer manner. He is an asset.
Tim was very easy to talk to and provided appropriate re-assurance.
Amazing Team! I can’t thank Derek and Hannah enough for their guidance and expertise. Thank you both so much.
The unexpected experience of a H&S Executive prosecution was facing my company and this proved to extend over a period of several months because of the slow process. I instructed Poole Alcock to handle the matter on behalf of the company and I found Dan Brooks, the Partner who heads up Criminal Litigation, to be extremely supportive and responsive from initial enquiry and instruction through to the hearing and thereafter. The process did prove to be stressful but Poole Alcock walked us through each stage and ensured that it went as smoothly as possible. I was specifically grateful for Dan’s advice on the day of the trial. Their advice proved to be accurate and their recommendations were offered sympathetically and in a measured way.
I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending the services of Poole Alcock to any company facing similar circumstances.
Tim, the man, the myth, the legend.
Mr Flood is a wizard in Court!
Thank you so much for all your preparation and work in the court this morning. I want to thank you and each of the solicitors that helped me over the last 18 months. I would also like to say a big thank you to the office and reception staff who have always been most helpful and polite to me.
I would just like to personally drop you a line to thank you for your considerable personal and professional effort today, I am well aware that its your job, however when I spoke to Scott before he assured me without reservation that you were the man for the job, he was absolutely correct, I would have no hesitation in recommending your services to anyone who may be in as an unfortunate situation that we were today.
I am extremely happy with the help I received from Poole Alcock and would not hesitate to use your company’s services again.
Tim’s representation was professional, knowledgeable and robust. Excellent service all round!
Tim Edgeley gave an excellent service throughout my case and kept me updated regularly.
Your professionalism and commitment to my case was exceptional. Your attention to detail and also the time you spent preparing with me for the court date was above and beyond expectations.
The administration support and communication from Poole Alcock was exceptional throughout, with prompt return of phone calls and correspondence. I must thank Ruth Holloway in particular for her commitment and tenacity in successfully appealing the initial refund of my legal fees. Thank you.
I felt I was given a very good service in a very professional manner.
I just wanted to thank you for the way your solicitor, Stuart Flood defended my cousin at Crewe Magistrates Courts recently.
Stuart did a tremendous job of keeping the case at the Magistrates Courts and in getting the best possible outcome we could have ever hoped for. All concerned were mightily impressed at his skill & professionalism. Stuart and the Probation Officer were a formidable team.
Thank you once again from all the family. One never knows whats is around the corner but with respect, hopefully we won’t be in need of your defence services again, however, if we do we will know where to come.
I would like to thank Stuart Flood and his staff for their professional, friendly and compassionate service at a very difficult time.
This is just a quick note to thank you very much for all your help on Friday 16th at Crewe Magistrates Court.
You understood my exact situation perfectly and communicated this very effectively to the court. You were a great comfort to me in unfamiliar circumstances.
Thank you very much again and you are correct – things are looking up once more!
Tim was easy to talk to and provided appropriate re-assurance