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Totting Up Ban – What You Need To Know 

A totting up ban is an automatic driving ban that is handed to drivers who accumulate 12 or more points on their driving licence within a three year period. The length of the driving ban varies but is usually 6 months and will be issued by a Magistrates court.

Totting Up Ban

If you have been issued with a totting up ban, you can either accept the driving disqualification handed to you or appeal it in a variety of ways.

If you or those that you care for are likely to experience extraordinary hardship as a result of you not being able to drive, then you have the option to submit an exceptional hardship application. This is intended to minimise the length of the disqualification period you are required to serve or overturn the driving ban completely.

You also have the option to appeal any current or historic motoring conviction that has resulted in tipping you over the 12 penalty points ‘totting up’ threshold.

To either appeal a motoring conviction or to submit an exceptional hardship claim, then you should instruct the services of a motor defence solicitor as the earliest opportunity.

Caddick Davies is a firm of experienced motor defence solicitors specialising in representing drivers charged with motoring offences. 

The team works to give drivers the best chance of overturning the charges or fines made against them by establishing the facts to build a strong case against the charges or penalty issued, providing a defence counsel that can be relied on in court, and appealing previous convictions – if a defence can be made and you pleaded not guilty at the time of the original offence.


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 how a Solicitor can help you with the options you have when faced with a totting up ban.

When Are You Likely To Receive A Driving Ban?

When Are You Likely To Receive A Driving Ban?

In the UK, you can be banned from driving, (also referred to as ‘being disqualified’), if you are convicted of any driving offence that attracts a driving ban penalty, or if you accumulate 12 or more penalty points from multiple offences within three years. In the case of the latter, this is commonly referred to as a ‘totting up ban’.

If either of these events occurs then you will get a summons through the post that tells you to go to Court.

New drivers should be aware that the threshold for being banned from driving is lower for them and they will have their licence revoked if they get six or more points within two years of passing their test. If this happens, then drivers will have to take their driving test again, including the theory element, as well as pay for a new provisional licence to be issued.

How Long Does Totting Up Disqualification Last?

How long does totting up disqualification last?

The length of the totting up ban is up to the Court to determine but is based on your driving record to date, how recently you have faced previous disqualifications, and is subject to a minimum period of disqualification under the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988.

The mandatory disqualification period for totting up bans is six months. This only applies however if the driver has no previous driving disqualifications to take into account. If previous driving bans exist then the Courts could impose longer disqualifications periods.

The Courts can also exercise their own discretion and may offer reduced disqualification periods of three months depending on the nature of the offence, arguments presented in Court, and after considering if any previous driving convictions exist.

The minimum period is:

  • six months if no previous disqualification is to be taken into account
  • one year if one previous disqualification is to be taken into account
  • two years if more than one previous disqualification is to be taken into account.

A previous disqualification is to be taken into account if it is:

  • not less than 56 days; and
  • imposed within the three years immediately preceding the date on which the current offence (or most recent of the current offences) was committed.

Regardless of the length of the disqualification period, the prospect of losing a driving licence and the freedom it provides will be a distressing prospect for most people.

For some, not being able to drive can have devastating consequences on employment and their ability to care for loved ones. It’s therefore important to know that you may have options to reduce the time of a driving ban or may even be able to overturn it completely if certain criteria exist.

We will cover these options in more detail below.

How Can A Solicitor Help Me?

If you are faced with a totting up ban then specialist motoring defence lawyers like Caddick Davies can work with you to ensure that you are treated fairly by the courts, stand the best chance of being cleared of any wrong doings and that any action that is taken against you is minimised as much as possible.

Our primary objective is to defend the claims made against you and/or minimise any fine and penalty points imposed.

We can do this by;

  •  working to appeal or overturn previous motoring convictions that were particularly harsh or led to you having too many points on your licence that you have now suffered a total driving ban,
  • working to submit an exceptional hardship claim on your behalf or defending the most recent alleged driving offence that would result in a driving ban if not overturned.

In both scenarios, we will use our expertise and experience to identify any factual or technical defence which may be available so that we can thoroughly prepare your case and present a strong defence before the court. If the court accepts your defence then you will be acquitted and no punishment will be imposed.

We will:

  • Review all the evidence of your case to establish the facts and clear you of wrongdoing
  • Building a strong defence by gathering evidence and presenting your case
  • Represent you in Court
  • Provide legal advice throughout your case
  • Seek to recover the cost of your legal representation by way of a defendant cost order

Appealing A Conviction

In some cases, it may be possible to appeal a historic motoring conviction or sentence that has led to having nine points on your licence and facing a totting up ban. If you have strong grounds to disagree with a conviction, or you think that the fine, penalty points or other sentencing measures were too harsh then you may have a case to appeal a previous motoring conviction if certain criteria apply.

  • You can only appeal against a driving conviction if you plead not guilty in the first place.
  • You can appeal against the sentence imposed in the Magistrates’ Court whether you pleaded guilty or not guilty.
  • You might therefore appeal against sentence or conviction or both depending on the circumstances.

An appeal is a complete rehearing by a Crown Court Judge sitting with two Magistrates, neither of whom will have heard your case before.

How Do We Help?

Caddick Davies will work with you throughout the appeals process to ensure that you have a strong case with fresh evidence and fresh arguments in order to give you the best possible chance of a successful appeal outcome.


Contact Caddick Davies Solicitors today
Send us a message or call us on 0333 443 2366 for friendly advice


Exceptional Hardship Bans

Motorists facing a driving ban as a result of ‘totting up’ can make an application to the courts for them not to be banned from driving on the grounds of ‘exceptional hardship’.

Not everybody facing a totting up ban can make a claim of exceptional hardship to avoid losing their licence. Every application will be fully investigated by the Courts before being granted so it’s imperative that drivers only begin this claims procedure under the direction of professional legal advice and if a genuine prospect of hardship exists.

A specialist motor defence solicitor will be able to ensure that a robust case is put together to support your claim when the punishment of a totting up ban will lead to extraordinary and real hardship being faced by the driver themselves, or those that they are responsible for caring for.

Genuine examples of exceptional hardship include loss of employment, loss of living accommodation, disability, inability to care for others or risk of redundancy would arise as a direct result of a totting up driving ban.

Examples include;

  • Loss of employment due to the inability to drive
  • Redundancy or business loss due to inability to drive
  • Severe reduction in income due to inability to drive
  • Loss of accommodation due to inability to drive and make money
  • A disability that requires you to be able to drive
  • Inability to care for a dependant family member or close contact such as taking children to school or taking relatives to medical appointments for example.

How Do We Help?

Caddick Davies will work with you to provide professional legal expertise throughout the process of submitting an exceptional hardship claim following a totting up driving ban. Ensuring that a claim is fully prepared with supporting evidence that will pass the scrutiny of the Courts is

If you have accumulated 12 penalty points and are facing a driving ban that would cause you exceptional hardship, please contact our friendly team for an informal discussion and advice and how we can help.


Contact Caddick Davies Solicitors today
Send us a message or call us on 0333 443 2366 for friendly advice


Related Questions

How Long Will Points Stay On My Licence?

How long will points stay on my licence?











If you have lots of points on your driving licence then it’s natural to want to know how long they will be there and how long they will continue to impact things like your insurance premiums.

The length of time that penalty points stay on your record and continue to impact things such as insurance premiums will depend on; the severity of the offence that resulted in the points being issued and when the offence occurred.

Most penalty points stay on a driving licence for a period of four years from the date of the offence although they are only active for the first three years. The minimum number of points issued for a driving offence is two with most offences attracting 3-6 points. For more serious offences such as causing death by dangerous driving or drink driving, these points will stay on your licence for eleven years.

When the points on your licence have expired, you may still feel the effects of the driving conviction on your pocket for an additional period of time. Points on your licence must be declared to your insurance company for five years after they have been issued. This means that in the case of being issued points for a relatively minor offence such as speeding, you could be feeling the financial repercussions for up to five years after the offence.

Will Points Stay On My Licence After A Driving Ban?

Whether or not penalty points remain on a driver’s licence following a driving ban will depend on why they were banned in the first place.

If the driving ban was issued as a result of ‘totting up’, when the period of the ban or disqualification comes to an end, the driver’s licence will be returned to them with a clean slate and no points.

If however the driving ban was imposed for a specific offence, then the driver’s licence will still be returned to the driver after the ban but unlike for ‘totting up’, any previously issued penalty points will still be valid.


This article has given you an overview of what a totting up ban is, what to do if you are facing a driving ban due to exceeding the maximum number 12 points on your driving licence, and the options that you may have to overturn a driving ban.

In short, if you have accumulated 12 or more penalty points on your driving licence within a three year period, then you will be handed an automatic driving ban. If you find yourself facing a totting up ban then you should instruct the services of a specialist motoring defence solicitor who can:

  • provide appeals against any recent or historical motoring convictions that have attributed to the points that have resulted in your totting up ban
  • assist in compiling a watertight exceptional hardship claim that will pass the scrutiny of the Courts and give the best chance of reducing or overturning the ban
  • give advice and no-obligation consultation to discuss your case and explore the ways you can be helped

At Caddick Davies Solicitors, we have a team of specialist motor defence lawyers that specialise in representing motorists at risk of losing their driving licence due to totting up bans. From the simplest to the most complex of cases, we are here to help. We start every enquiry with an informal discussion to get a clear understanding of your circumstances and are here to answer any questions that you may have in confidence.

Our leading team of motoring offence solicitors at Caddick Davies have a reputation for success when it comes to defending motorists charged with driving offences. We work with clients all over the UK and are rated in the top 20 law firms on TrustPilot. 

For efficient and effective legal advice for motoring offences, please get in touch to discuss your case with our friendly team today. 

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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