What are the Penalties for Drink Driving?

Undoubtedly, drink driving is an offence in the UK that all drivers should be aware of. Every driver should of course obey the law and not exceed the legal drink driving alcohol limit. Many sources advise that, given many people’s difficulty in judging when they’re close to the limit, the safest thing is to completely avoid alcohol when driving.

Since driving while drunk is a crime, it attracts a number of penalties to those caught offending. We have a team of solicitors at Caddick Davies who can offer legal assistance to drivers caught drink driving. Our very knowledgeable motoring lawyers can examine whether there are any mitigating factors in your case. Our experts emphasise the importance of adhering to driving regulations, not least because of the various drink driving penalties.

What are the specific penalties for drink driving offences?

There is no drunk driving penalty that is nominal. All such penalties are serious, and worsen depending on situations caused by the drink driving. it is important to understand that there are aggravating features in a case that can make it more severe, particularly if other people suffer physical harm. Below is a summary of drink driving penalties in the UK as per the current Government guidelines:

1. If you are caught above the legal limit while being in charge of a vehicle, or unfit due to drinking you may:

• be imprisoned for 3 months
• be fined up to £2,500
• face a possible ban from driving

2. If you are caught driving, or attempting to, while above the legal limit, you may attract:

• 6 months imprisonment
• an unlimited fine
• a ban from driving for at least 1 years or 3 years if you get convicted twice in a period of 10 years.

3. Death by careless driving, when under the influence of alcohol, may lead to you:

• receiving up to 14 years imprisonment
• an unlimited fine
• a ban from driving for at least 2 years

4. Drivers caught drink driving may refuse to provide a breath, blood or urine specimen for analysis. Please note that this can also lead to penalties as harsh as other drink driving penalties. You may get:

• 6 months imprisonment
• an unlimited fine
• a driving ban of at least 1 year

As you can see here, the penalties for drink driving vary depending on your offence. The magistrate who hears your case will be the one to determine the penalty you'll receive. You should also be aware that after any drink driving ban, an extended driving test will be needed before you get your licence back.

Is it possible to reduce your drink driving penalties?

In the event that there are mitigating circumstances in your case, it may be possible to defend your charge, or at least reduce the penalties, but it is important to be aware that penalty points are likely to come with the drink driving offence. If you are caught offending, you may receive 3 to 11 penalty points for drink driving.

This could still lead to a totting up ban if these penalty points accumulate to 12 or more points on your licence. The Magistrates Court is responsible for issuing this ban, which can last a minimum of 6 months. Drivers interested in reducing their ban may do so by taking the Drink Drive Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS) course. For those facing a driving ban of 12 months or more, it is the court's decision to offer the course. We can advise on these options.

How do I find expert help with my drink driving charge?

Caddick Davies Solicitors provides a lot of awareness when it comes to drink driving. While it is clear we strongly discourage drink driving, we offer legal assistance to those caught or prosecuted for drink driving. We have highly qualified and experienced motoring solicitors who will do everything in their power to get you the best outcome possible.

Contact us for an initial consultation where we will determine whether you can get a favourable outcome in your case. You can call us at 03334 432 366 or use our site to email us or request a callback. We'll have a very friendly expert respond swiftly to know how we can legally assist you. We can help you avoid the drink driving penalties.

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