The penalty for driving without due care
In law careless driving is defined as driving without due care and attention and without consideration for other persons. Many different scenarios can be construed as such, from causing an accident due to a distraction such as smoking or altering the radio, or an accident in which no one else was present, to undertaking and driving through a red light.
If you are to be prosecuted for careless driving you will need to be issued with a Notice of Intended Prosecution. Possible defences for a careless driving charge include:
- A mechanical fault on the car - this needs to be reported to the police at the time when the police initially speak to the defendant about the incident. Then they are duty-bound to disprove it.
- Necessity - arguing that it was necessary for the careless driving to be undertaken because of someone else’s indiscretion.
If, however, you are to be prosecuted for careless driving, it is recommended that you Find a Solicitor to aid your defence.
The possible punishments for careless driving include a fine of up to £5000, 3-9 penalty points and, in serious cases, a disqualification from driving.
Causing death by careless and inconsiderate driving
Causing death by careless and inconsiderate driving is a charge brought against anyone causing a death when driving if their actions come under the definition of driving without due concern. A charge of causing death by careless driving would result from a mistake such as a momentary lack of concentration that caused a death; for instance if the driver was to glance away to talk to a passenger, or retune the radio. This charge requires a Notice of Intended Prosecution.
The punishments can range from a mandatory disqualification, extended retest and unlimited fine, to a 5 years prison sentence.
It is recommended that you engage a solicitor to aid your defence should you be charged with causing death by careless driving.
Causing death by careless driving when under influence of drink or drugs
This charge relates to causing a death under the definition of driving without due care and attention, whilst also relating to the definitions of being unfit to drive through drink or drugs, or being over the prescribed legal limit of alcohol. This charge can also be brought if in the resultant 18 hours after the death you refuse to contribute a mandatory sample of breath, blood or urine, or if you were physically unable, at the time, to consent to a sample of blood being taken and in future refuse, without reason, for the sample’s analysis by a laboratory. This charge requires a Notice of Intended Prosecution.
The punishment for this charge ranges from a minimum of 1 year to a maximum of 14 years prison sentence, as well as a mandatory 2 years’ disqualification and extended retest.
It is recommended that you engage a solicitor to aid your defence should you be charged with causing death by careless driving when under influence of drink or drugs.
Causing death by driving: unlicensed, disqualified and uninsured drivers
There doesn’t have to be any fault in the standard of driving when the death was caused for this charge to be brought, only the fact that the driver was not lawfully able to drive, through either the lack of a licence or insurance, or disqualification, at the time of the death. Disqualification is considered a more serious offence than driving without a licence or insurance. This charge requires a Notice of Intended Prosecution.
The maximum punishment for this charge is a 2 year prison sentence, with a mandatory disqualification for 12 months, extended retest and 3-11 penalty points.
It is recommended that you engage a solicitor to aid your defence should you be charged with causing death by driving: unlicensed, disqualified and uninsured drivers.
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