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Is Speeding A Criminal Offence? A Definitive Answer

Is speeding a criminal office? Yes, speeding is a criminal offence that is punishable by law. If caught speeding on public roads, drivers will be issued an SP30 or SP50 penalty code by the police and they can face a maximum £1000 fine if on a road and £2500 if on a motorway and 6 penalty points on their licence. Drivers can also be disqualified from driving in the most serious cases of speeding or as a result of accumulating 12 penalty points (a “totting up” disqualification).

Caught Speeding?

If you have been sent a notice of intended prosecution letter as a result of a speeding offence, then you have committed a criminal offence and will have to decide how you will proceed. You have the option to plead guilty and accept the penalties and fines issued or to plead not guilty if you feel that the points, fines or offence made against you is unreasonable. If pleading not guilty, then you will have to go to court and will need the assistance of a motoring defence solicitor.

Caddick Davies Can Help

Caddick Davies Solicitors offer speeding offence representation for motorists who find themselves faced with SP30 or SP50 speeding charges. Our expert team can help you to keep driving endorsements to a minimum and has defended many cases in motoring courts throughout England and Wales successfully. By working to establish the facts of your case, we build a strong defence or appeals case and provide a defence counsel that can be relied on in Court to give you the best chance of a positive outcome.


To Discuss Your Case – Contact Caddick Davies Solicitors today

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


Read on to understand more about speeding offences including the penalties involved, the impact on your criminal record, how long points stay on your licence, how your insurance premium will be affected, and how a solicitor can help. 

What Is Speeding?

Speed camera on UK motorway

Speeding is a criminal offence that occurs when an individual in control of a motor vehicle on a public road has driven the vehicle in excess of the speed limit indicated by the local signage, the highway code and the Law. You can be caught speeding by triggering speed cameras, mobile police vans operating spot checks on speeding or if a police officer pulls you over when driving in excess of the speed limit specified for the road that you are driving on.

What Is A Criminal Offence?

A criminal offence is an act or action that is punishable by law. As speeding is punishable by law with fines, penalty points and driving bans, it is a criminal offence to speed. If caught speeding drivers can face hefty fines and penalty points on their licence after being issued with a notice of intended prosecution setting out the speeding offence code. Speeding offence codes for speeding range from SP10 – SP50 as outlined below.

What Speeding Penalties Are There?

As a result of committing a speeding offence, you will receive a letter to your registered home address within 14 days of the offence offering one or more of the following outcomes:

  • a conditional offer of a Fixed Penalty
  • penalty points added to your licence and a financial penalty set by a Magistrate
  • a driving ban, if 12 penalty points are accumulated within 3 years.
  • the option to attend a Speed Awareness Course as an alternative to any other outcome

If you are not eligible to attend a speed awareness course, then your driving licence will be endorsed with between 3-6 points on top of a fine. The fine will be a fixed penalty or determined by the Court based on your income and any driving ban issued will be set for a period of time to be determined by the Court.

If you have received a fixed penalty notice or court summons through the post as a result of a speeding offence, contact Caddick Davies for a no-obligation consultation to discuss how we can help you to protect your driving licence and minimise any action taken against you.

How Long Will The Points Stay On My Licence?

Calendar and alarm clock on pink background

Whilst speeding is often considered to be a fairly minor offence by many, it is an offence that can impact a driver for many years to come in terms of having to pay more for their insurance premiums so it’s one to be taken seriously.

Drivers face between 3-6 penalty points for speeding offences which will remain on their driving record for 4 years. During this time, insurance companies will consider the driver to be at a higher risk of them having to pay out as they’re more likely to have an accident. As a result, the price of the insurance premium will be raised.

If new drivers are caught speeding within the first two years of passing their test, they also face a minimum of 3 penalty points on their licence but if they have 6 or more within this initial two year period then the driving licence will be revoked and they will need to retake their driving test.

The table below shows the common speeding offences and how many penalty points can be awarded.

Speeding offence Penalty Points Time on driving record
Exceeding goods vehicle speed limits  3-6 points 4 years
Exceeding speed limit for type of vehicle (excluding goods or passenger vehicle)  3-6 points  4 years
Exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road 3-6 points 4 years
Exceeding passenger vehicle speed limit 3-6 points 4 years
Exceeding speed limit on a motorway 3-6 points 4 years

If you are concerned that a speeding offence will result in a driving ban either directly or via a totting up ban then you should talk to the team at Caddick Davies who will be able to advise on the options available to you.


Contact Caddick Davies Solicitors today

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


Related Questions

What Is The Speed Limit?

The speed limit that drivers need to drive within will be determined by the kind of road they are driving on and the type of vehicle that they are driving. Whilst the speed limit on any given road states the maximum speed that should be driven, drivers should always make allowances for weather and difficult driving conditions to ensure that their speed reflects the dangers of the road that they are travelling on and their speed is adjusted down accordingly. View full overview of roads and speed limits in the highway code. 


Tip: If driving in a built-up area without any speed limit signs nearby, you can use the presence of street lights to determine the speed limit. Built-up areas with street lights will have a 30 mph limit.

How Can Caddick Davies Help?

hand on steering wheel

Keeping penalty points to a minimum or reducing the number of points already on a driver’s licence is crucial to protecting their ability to drive legally. If being able to drive is important to their work, livelihood, wellbeing and family, then instructing the services of a motoring defence solicitor when faced with motor offences gives the best chance of successfully challenging speeding offences and minimising the points or fines faced as a result of committing a speeding offence.

The specialist team of lawyers at Caddick Davies will assess each case presented to us individually and without judgement to identify any factual or technical defence that can be used to overturn the charge in Court or minimise the fines and/or penalty points that are faced.

Caddick Davies will: 

  1. review all the evidence of your case to establish the facts
  2. build a strong defence by gathering evidence and presenting your case
  3. provide a defence counsel that you can rely on in court
  4. provide legal advice and consultation throughout your case


We hope that this article has given you a simple overview of speeding offences and has clarified that speeding is a criminal offence, the endorsements and penalties you can face and how motor defence solicitors can help you to reduce or overturn speeding punishments.

To recap, speeding is a criminal offence that is punishable by law, drivers must pay attention to speed limits every time they get behind the wheel of a car or other motor vehicle and be aware that;

  • If caught speeding on public roads, drivers will be issued with an SP30 or SP50 penalty code by the police and they can face a maximum £1000 fine and 6 penalty points on their licence
  • Drivers can also be disqualified from driving in the most extreme cases of speeding or as a result of a totting up ban
  • Drivers can use tricks like looking for lamp posts in built up areas if unsure what the speed limit is
  • The highway code sets out the speed limits for all types of roads and vehicle classifications
  • If you have committed a speeding offence, you will receive a notice of intended prosecution through the post. Following this, you can choose to accept the endorsements against you or take the matter to court
  • A motor defence solicitor can assist you at every stage of a speeding offence case to provide legal advice and take action that can reduce or remove any fines, penalties or driving bans that you face.

From the simplest to the most complex of cases, the expert team at Caddick Davies can help drivers around the UK by providing advice, representation and a reliable defence when faced with motoring offence charges. The firm is rated in the top 20 law firms on TrustPilot.

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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