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Driving Whilst Disqualified – What Next?

If you have been accused of driving whilst disqualified, you are bound to feel concerned. After all, this is a serious motoring offence that can have severe penalties attached to it. So, what should you do next if you have been accused of this offence?

In this article, we will explain what it means to be accused of driving whilst disqualified, as well as the potential penalties that you could face if you are found guilty. We will also discuss whether there are defences available for this offence, and how you could defend your case in court.

Caught Driving After Disqualification – Here’s What To Do

Driving whilst disqualified is a serious motoring offence, and there can be severe penalties if you are caught doing so. These can range from an extension to your existing ban to imprisonment, so it’s important that you know what to do if you are in this situation.

If you have been caught driving whilst disqualified, the chances are that you will have been stopped by police and charged, or the police may attend your address to charge you formally. However, occasionally drivers may instead receive a court summons through the post, ordering them to attend court.

Being charged with driving whilst disqualified may understandably leave you feeling worried and concerned. So, you need to know what to do if you find yourself in this situation. Read on to learn everything you need to know about being charged with driving whilst disqualified.


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Disqualified driver

How Are Disqualified Drivers Caught?

You might have heard of ANPR cameras – that stands for Automatic Number Plate Recognition. You will find these cameras fitted in many different locations, including on motorways and alongside major roads as well as on all police vehicles.

ANPR cameras automatically register whether a passing vehicle holds valid road tax and an MOT, as well as who it is registered to. These cameras are used to locate stolen vehicles, missing people and those wanted by police.

If you are driving a vehicle whilst disqualified, you are likely to be caught by an ANPR camera, especially if the vehicle is registered in your name or does not hold valid road tax or an MOT. When an ANPR camera highlights concerns with a vehicle, the case is then passed to the police for investigations to take place.

Alternatively, disqualified drivers may be caught driving by the police. If a police officer suspects a driver to be disqualified, they may stop the vehicle and ask the driver to present their driving licence. If the driver has been disqualified from driving, they will be arrested on suspicion of driving whilst disqualified and charged.

What Happens If You Are Caught Driving Whilst You Are Banned?

You might be wondering what you can expect to happen if you are caught driving a vehicle on a public highway whilst disqualified from driving. As this is a serious motoring offence, it is often dealt with severely. This means, if you are caught driving whilst disqualified, you are likely to be arrested and taken to a police station.

When you arrive at the police station, you will have your fingerprints taken and a DNA test carried out. You will also be searched and photographed by the police officers. After this, you will be questioned about the alleged offence and detained in a police cell whilst the police officers establish the facts.

After you have been interviewed by the police, you will either be charged with driving whilst disqualified or released without charge. If you are charged, the police will decide whether you are able to be released on bail. If bail is granted, you will be allowed to return home until your court date. However, if you are considered to be a danger to the community, you may be detained and taken to the court in a police vehicle to await your hearing.

If you have been caught driving a vehicle whilst banned from driving, you are likely to be charged with both driving whilst disqualified and driving without insurance. This is because you cannot be insured to drive a vehicle without holding a valid driving licence. This means that when you attend court, you will be prosecuted for both of these offences simultaneously.


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Penalty for disqualified driving

Penalties For Disqualified Driving

Driving whilst disqualified is seen as a serious offence, so is dealt with severely by the courts. This can range from a fine to a custodial sentence, depending on the severity of the offence.

So, what are the potential penalties that you could face for driving whilst disqualified? Potential penalties include:

The penalty that you will receive will depend on the severity of the offence, the individual circumstances and any previous offences that are on your record. Ultimately, the judge will decide on the most appropriate sentence for the offence that has been committed, so it’s not possible to give a definite answer when it comes to what penalty you are likely to receive for driving whilst disqualified.

For the best chances of securing a reduced penalty, it’s always best to enlist specialist legal representation from an experienced motoring offence lawyer. They can put together the strongest possible defence for your case, with the aim of keeping any penalty to a minimum.

Can You Get More Penalty Points Whilst Disqualified From Driving?

Many people mistakenly believe that you cannot receive a penalty point endorsement on your driving licence whilst disqualified from driving. However, if you are caught driving whilst banned, it is possible to receive up to another six penalty points on your licence.

It’s worth noting that it is more likely that the court would impose an extension to your disqualification than endorsing penalty points, but it is definitely possible to receive penalty points whilst banned from driving.

Defences For Driving Whilst You Are Disqualified

Driving whilst disqualified is known as an absolute offence. This means that there are very few defences to this offence. In fact, the only true defence to this charge is by proving that you were not the person that was driving the vehicle at the time in question, or that you weren’t disqualified from driving at that point in time.

In order to be convicted of driving whilst disqualified, the police will need to prove that you were driving the vehicle and were disqualified from driving at that time. This evidence can be as simple as the police officer witnessing the vehicle being driven by the disqualified driver, or it may involve ANPR cameras and CCTV.

It can be challenging to successfully defend a charge of driving whilst disqualified. For this reason, we’d always recommend hiring a specialist motoring offence solicitor to prepare the strongest possible defence for your case.


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Caught driving whilst banned

How Long Does A Driving Disqualification Last?

If you are disqualified from driving, you will be informed of the length of the disqualification period. The duration will depend on the severity of the offence, but there are some maximum durations. These are as follows:

  • A maximum disqualification period of 6 months if you receive 12 or more penalty points within 3 years.
  • A maximum disqualification period of 12 months if you are disqualified for a second time within 3 years.
  • A maximum disqualification period of 2 years if you are disqualified for a third time within 3 years.

There are some cases where a disqualification may be waived or shortened. This is usually in the case of exceptional hardship, where the disqualification is likely to have an unusually large impact on the livelihood of the offender.

Are You Insured To Drive Whilst Banned?

When you are disqualified from driving, your car insurance policy becomes null and void. This is because you have to hold a valid driving licence to be able to take out a car insurance policy in the UK. Therefore, if you lose that driving licence, you become uninsured.

For this reason, motorists who are charged with driving whilst disqualified will usually also be prosecuted for driving without insurance, as it is impossible to hold car insurance if you do not have a valid driving licence.


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Do You Need To Apply For A New Licence After A Driving Disqualification?

If you are disqualified from driving, you may be wondering whether you need to apply for a new driving licence when your disqualification period ends. The answer to this question will depend on the length of the ban.

For disqualifications of up to 55 days, the driving licence is retained. This means that the motorist will be able to resume driving as soon as the ban comes to an end. However, if the disqualification is 56 days or longer, the motorist will need to apply for a new driving licence. To do this, you will need to take a driving test. In some circumstances, the court will also require that an extended test is taken. This is usually the case for more serious offences.

It is not a defence to claim that you did not realise that you needed to reapply for your driving licence. If you resume driving as soon as your disqualification period ends without applying for a new licence, you could be prosecuted for driving without a valid licence.

Can You Receive A Prison Sentence For Driving Whilst Banned?

Disqualified driving is a serious motoring offence. For this reason, a conviction for driving whilst disqualified will carry severe penalties, including up to 6 months imprisonment.

In the least serious of cases, including if this is your first offence for driving whilst disqualified, you may find that the court is more lenient. This could mean that you are awarded an alternative penalty rather than imprisonment, such as a community order or an extension to your driving ban.

On the other hand, if the driver has been convicted of driving whilst disqualified previously, or in more serious cases, the motorist will be much more likely to receive a sentence of imprisonment for the maximum period.

The sentence that you receive will be dependent on the individual details of your case, along with your personal circumstances. The best way to increase your chances of a lenient sentence is to ensure that you have specialist legal representation from an experienced motoring offence solicitor. They will be able to prepare the strongest possible defence to your case, presenting any mitigating factors that may contribute towards a reduced sentence.


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Related Questions

Can You Drive While Disqualified?

If you have been disqualified from driving, this means that you are not allowed to drive any type of vehicle on a road or public highway, in any circumstances. This means that if you are caught driving a vehicle on a public highway whilst disqualified from driving, you are highly likely to be charged with driving whilst disqualified.

When Can You Drive After Being Disqualified?

When you receive a disqualification from driving, you will be told how long that disqualification will last for. If the disqualification is for 55 days or less, you will be able to begin driving again as soon as the disqualification period ends. However, if you are banned from driving for 56 days or more, you will be required to reapply for your driving licence. This will involve retaking your driving test. For more serious offences, you may be required to take an extended driving test before you can regain your licence.

What To Do If You Are Caught Driving After Disqualification

If you have been charged with driving whilst disqualified, it’s likely that you will feel concerned about what happens next. The penalties for this offence can be severe, from a maximum fine of up to £5,000, to six months imprisonment. That’s why it’s so important that you have specialist legal representation if you are facing this charge.

At Caddick Davies, we are experts when it comes to motoring offences, and we are on your side. If you are looking for expert legal advice regarding your disqualified driving charge, we’re here to help. Contact us today for a free legal consultation to talk through your options.


Contact Caddick Davies Solicitors today 

Send us a message or call us on 0333 443 2366 for expert legal advice


 

Motoring Lawyer at Caddick Davies Solicitors
Caddick Davies is recognised as one of England and Wales’ leading motoring law firms, offering specialist Speeding Solicitors, Drink Driving Solicitors & Dangerous Driving Solicitors.We provide advice and representation on all motoring offences including speeding, the avoidance of disqualification on penalty points or “totting up” (exceptional hardship), driving without due care and attention (careless driving), dangerous driving, drink driving, as well as a range of services related to medical revocation of a driving licence.
Neil Davies

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