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Challenging a Speeding Fine

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 9 Jan 2019 | comments*Discuss
 
Speeding Fine Speeding Ticket Speed

Speeding tickets can result in a variety of fines and penalty points depending on the offender’s driving history. But there are ways to legally challenge a speeding fine under certain circumstances.

Speeding Offence Points and Penalties

A first offender can receive a £100 fine and three to six Penalty Points. But fines can be larger than this depending on the circumstances, and fines can even hit one and half times your salary if you are caught travelling over 51 mph in a 30mph area with a maximum £1000. Guilty offenders who are offered a fixed penalty will usually have their licence endorsed with a minimum number of penalty points and a £100 fine. Court appearances can be a risky option and may bring increased penalty points and fines, and can even mean disqualification under certain circumstances. Speeding offences with penalty points will also mean that Insurance Premiums are likely to increase.

Speeding Offences Statistics

According to a recent Home Office report there are around 2.3 million motoring offence court appearances per year in the UK. Around 191,000 people are Disqualified for Motoring Offences per year and 33,200 motorists are disqualified using the penalty points system. It has also been reported that £600 million in speeding tickets have been incorrectly applied to motorists in the UK. Only 1% of motorists actually challenge their speeding tickets. The £2,500 cost to hire a solicitor to challenge a speeding fine may be one of the reasons why people do not usually challenge the tickets.

Challenging a Speeding Fine

Successfully challenging a speeding ticket can actually occur under certain circumstances. The first point will be to check that all details on the Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) are correct. The NIP should include the vehicle’s details, and details such as the time, date and location of the speeding offence. An NIP also comes with a 14 day time limit; this means the alleged offender has received the NIP within 14 days of the offence occurring plus postage time. Be aware that small errors such as typography errors on the NIP will not be grounds for challenging a speeding fine.

Speed Cameras and Speeding Fines

If a Speed Camera was the method used to capture the speeding offence then it may be a good idea to return to the scene. Check that speed limit signs are evident and are placed on both sides of the road. Also check that the speed limits signs are highly visibly and not obscured by obstructions such as trees or bushes. If this is the case then evidence should be taken such as photographic records of the obstructions.

Request Proof of the Speeding Offence

Motorists who are certain they were not speeding can request copies of the photographs taken by the speed cameras. Motorists can also request any other evidence that will be used by the prosecution. Where speed cameras are concerned there is usually no requirement of any back-up evidence to exist. If a mechanical device was used to assess the speeding offence, such as a radar gun or police car’s speedometer, then a record of evidence plus a signed certificate by an authority must exist.

Defences Used to Challenge a Speeding Ticket

There are some defences that can be used to challenge a speeding ticket. These can include:

  • Incorrect details on the NIP
  • That the alleged offender was not driving the car at the time of the offence
  • That the alleged offender was in an exempted vehicle attending an emergency
  • That the vehicle was a company van and the alleged offender was not driving, proof will usually be needed
  • That a family member was driving at the time
  • Incorrect or absent road signs

Mitigating Circumstances and Speeding Offences

An offender who is pleading guilty may find it worthwhile to use mitigating circumstances to reduce the sentence level. Mitigating circumstances can include specific reasons for speeding including medical emergencies. Pleading that hardship will apply if disqualification is intended might also mean the sentence is reduced. Hardship can include the likely loss of a job if disqualified. Hardship can also mean that family members such as sick family members will be adversely affected with regards to family transportation means.

Challenging a speeding fine is a risky option and is the reason why so few motorists do use this route. Anyone who is considering challenging a speeding ticket should seek legal advice from a professional. A solicitor or lawyer will be able to assess the case and evidence, and the likelihood of actually successfully challenging the alleged offence.

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Can I contest a speeding offence on the grounds that the police spelt my name wrong despite seeing my driving license and also put down the wrong model of car...a suzuki swift instead of celerio? I was shown I was driving 31 mph in a temporary 20mph zone. What are the limits of accuracy of these lasar devices used car to car, as 30mph would make a difference to the band of offence?
ann - 9-Jan-19 @ 12:55 PM
I was stopped for speeding on the A71 between Livingston and Edinburgh. To my knowledge that whole stretch of road is a 50mph zone apart from a couple of parts going through villages. On checking the ticket, the police officer has put it as60mph. Could this error invalidate the ticket? Thanks in advance, Johnny
johnnys149 - 8-Jan-19 @ 1:33 PM
Hi can anyone please give me a little help the company I work for has just told me that myself or my workmate has been caught speeding 36 in a 30 but neither of us remember who was driving . We have requested photo evidence but the picture is no good still unable to identify the driver where do I go from hear
Gaz - 14-Dec-18 @ 3:17 PM
Travelling on M1 northbound at 2300hrs DEC 7th 2018, speed 70mph with minimal traffic and road conditions/visibility good, I approached 50mph smart signs north of Nottingham.After entering the zone and slowing down without breaking I was flashed at 68mph. No indication at all as to why the speed restriction was in force until approx 1mile later the road narrows due to unattended road works. Should we not be informed as to the reason of a speed restriction on a major motorway especially late at night when there is little or no traffic? I thought to begin with that maybe there had been an incident which was now cleared and the police had not removed the restriction immediately afterwards. On my approach to the speed restriction there was no evidence to suggest a reason for slowing down on a clear unobstructed motorway until nearing the roadworks. I have been driving with a clean licence for more than 40yrs and now feel gutted as to the prospect of being penalised because I did not slow down quick enough during a journey on a trouble free motorway. Is there a possible argument I could put forward here to avoid any fine or points?
rayby - 8-Dec-18 @ 10:49 AM
I have got NIP( as a owner of the vehicle) for exceeding the motorway with temporary 50mph( roadwork )speed with 16miles, but I was not the driver ( I can prove it with air plane ticket ) ,couple of friends come to pick me up , but I have find out who was driving, police send me photos only from the back of my car. What is the best way to approach this matter - shall I take all liability? This friend of mine , wife had hard operation soon? Can you please advice, what are the possible consequences 50mph exceeded to66mph Regards, Nick
nick - 3-Dec-18 @ 10:02 AM
Hi and advise me please. I have just received an intent to prosecute. I have looked at the photo of my car which clearly shows that my brake lights were on and therefore i had responded to the sight of the dreaded yellow box by starting to slow down. Is this a valid reason for appeal? Many thanks Macs
Macs - 3-Dec-18 @ 8:06 AM
Hi , I was on the m62 traveling about 72 mph no signs were shown so it was national speed limit. I went through the camera at 27 West bound and the camera flashed me. This was strange to me as they trigger at 79 mph normally, it became obvious to me as I approached the following camera and signs which was set at 50 mph and had work force on the road that (they) had made a mistake and turned the wrong camera on. I recived a nip in the post"to my gf home" but the information does not tell me any details other than "triggered a camera" !!! I called and ask what speed I was doing and it was 72 mph the camera as I suspected was set at 50 and the signs above were not activated and showing nothing. They are still wanting to proceed but the nip states I only have 7 days to send it back... what should i do should I fight it or accept it? If I accept it it will be 72 mph in a 70 limit..
Ant - 3-Dec-18 @ 1:54 AM
I recently passed through a temporary 40mph speed limit. Just before the limit was a sign giving advanced warning that the 40mph restriction was due to start the following week however the nation speed limit signs had been semi covered with black bags. There were no other 40mph repeaters in place along approx 2miles of road no roadworks but a speed van about 2rd distance along the road. I was doing approx 57 miles per hour but my van is restricted to 50mph. Is the 40mph speed limit enforceable or can i go for breaking the vehicle limit. Ive never had any speeding offences previous
Scotty - 2-Dec-18 @ 8:43 AM
hi all i have received an NIP but the time is wrong on the document it says that i was at Ingmanthorpe at 18:09 and in my work we have a clocking in and out so i have proof that i did not leave work unit 17:50 on the football ground side of Leeds, it takes 30 mins to get to were the office was there is no way i could have got there in that time -
rosler - 15-Nov-18 @ 9:27 AM
I have received a NIP doing 57 in a 50 zone and the location on the NIP has me heading in the opp direction to which I was travelling , yes I havea photo which shows speed 57mph is it worth contesting or shall I just accept the fine? Any help please
B - 9-Nov-18 @ 8:04 AM
Hi I was travelling on a road where I knew there were average speed cameras. The limit was 50mph. The stretch was up a quite steep incline. There was a crawling articulated lorry in front of me & I could see it was safe for me to overtake as the road swept off to the right & could see the whole of the hillside. I began an overtake manoeuvre past the lorry. As I was overtaking the lorry I saw a car behind starting the same manoeuvre. I then accelerated hard in order to allow the car behind as much space to safely get past the lorry. Once past the lorry & checking the car behind me had also past the lorry, I modified my speed & carried on at 50mph. There are a number of further camera zones along the road to log average speed which I drove through at the speed limit. I have now received a nip for travelling at 58mph through the zone where I overtook the lorry. I feel thatif there were no camera's on that stretch & even if the car behind me was a traffic police car then there wouldn't have been an issue. It's also worth mentioning that if I had ignored the car behind me I would have been able to safely get past the lorry at 50mph. Do I have grounds to contest my nip?
Peterb - 20-Oct-18 @ 3:06 PM
Two questions: A) Has there been a precedent for instances of inconsistent, incorrect or the inappropriate application of variable speed limit policy on a Motorway providing a legal basis to challenge a speeding ticket? For example: 1) Motorway road works have road side speed limit signs stating 60 mph but overhead gantry displaying lower variable speed limit i.e. 30 mph without risk factor justification. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 2) Motorway road works end and maybe end of road works signs are displayed each side of the road but subsequent overhead gantries incorrectly displaying variable speed limit of 60 mph without risk factor justification. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 3) Motorway overhead gantries correctly displaying variable speed limit during time period of high traffic volume but erroneously left on during subsequent time period of low traffic volume without risk factor justification. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 4) Motorway single overhead gantry displaying variable speed limit of 50 mph immediately followed by overhead gantry displaying national speed limit without risk factor justification prior during or after. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 5) Motorway road works reducing four lanes to two lanes having no variable speed limit applied followed by road works with the same lack of risk factor justification but with overhead gantries displaying variable speed limit. The remotely controlled gantry signs are not consistently applied to the same ground conditions. B) How incorrect or contradictory does a variable speed limit need to be before drivers should rely on their better judgement of the surrounding context to determine their progress without fear of the current judicial process automatically presuming guilt with no errors by the Highway Authority accepted in defence or mitigation?
Judicial Review Requ - 1-Oct-18 @ 1:49 PM
Two questions: A) Has there been a precedent for instances of inconsistent, incorrect or the inappropriate application of variable speed limit policy on a Motorway providing a legal basis to challenge a speeding ticket? For example: 1) Motorway road works have road side speed limit signs stating 60 mph but overhead gantry displaying lower variable speed limit i.e. 30 mph without risk factor justification. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 2) Motorway road works end and maybe end of road works signs are displayed each side of the road but subsequent overhead gantries incorrectly displaying variable speed limit of 60 mph without risk factor justification. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 3) Motorway overhead gantries correctly displaying variable speed limit during time period of high traffic volume but erroneously left on during subsequent time period of low traffic volume without risk factor justification. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 4) Motorway single overhead gantry displaying variable speed limit of 50 mph immediately followed by overhead gantry displaying national speed limit without risk factor justification prior during or after. The remotely controlled gantry signs do not correspond to conditions on the ground. 5) Motorway road works reducing four lanes to two lanes having no variable speed limit applied followed by road works with the same lack of risk factor justification but with overhead gantries displaying variable speed limit. The remotely controlled gantry signs are not consistently applied to the same ground conditions. B) How incorrect or contradictory does a variable speed limit need to be before drivers should rely on their better judgement of the surrounding context to determine their progress without fear of the current judicial process automatically presuming guilt with no errors by the Highway Authority accepted in defence or mitigation?
Judicial Review Requ - 1-Oct-18 @ 10:22 AM
I’ve been caught speeding do 45mph in a 30mph I’ve already got 3 points on my licence as it is plus I’m a new driver will I lose my licence as if I do I will lose my job as well
Singh - 30-Sep-18 @ 11:17 PM
I have received a NIP today (29 September), letter dated 28 September, for an offence on 30 August. The letter was sent 28 days after the offence, well outside the 14 day limit for receiving the letter.I am not the registered owner as it is a lease car. Do you think it is worth appealing the notice? The offence was 70mph in a 60 zone, caught by a mobile speed camera in a van.
Gordon - 29-Sep-18 @ 1:00 PM
Caught twice on A1M First time was doing 87mph in a 70 Second time 60seconds later 97mph in a 70 Had medical emergangy, wearing stoma bag, had a leak in bag and eves up sitting in a chair full off............ it began burning my stomach and it has a lot of acid in it. I don’t want to go too much into the gorrie stuff but I was desperate to get off the roof bye to the burning and also I was desperate to clean myself up as it had gone through to the seat cover. I managed to pull over in lay-by and if they want to check then it will be on CCTV Should I plead guilty but write letter or not guilty due to my stoma bag coming off Please help Ps. I’m on long term sick due to illness and can’t afford solicitor.
Primrose - 18-Sep-18 @ 11:41 PM
My NIP is from a temporary camera (in a van) and all details are correct but states a location that is the same speed limit but 2 miles from the incident. Can I challenge? is it worth it? I already have 3 pts and attending a course based on fines from the last 2 month's. Which I realise is stupid.
John - 11-Sep-18 @ 2:44 PM
Hi , I went past a speed camera earlier to day I noticed it 50 meters ahead and slowed down from 40 to 30 almost instantly. The road is a dual carriage linked to another duel carriage way with a medium size round about. The are no clear governing speed limit signs after the roundabout and before the mobile van. 150 metes distance. There is a clear sign on the end of the road before the joining and exiting the roundabout. Worth contesting ? It’s a very sly placement
MRNA - 8-Sep-18 @ 7:02 PM
I was travelling down a 30mph road when a van went to pull out on me (a van was parked obstructing his view) I was on my motorcycle and sped up and moved over as far as I could. A traffic cop was there and pulled me over. He took measurements from where he got me and where this van was. It proved that I didn't not have enough room/time to stop. I sped up to avoid a potential accident. Is it worth contesting? When I asked him what he would have done he said stop which would have made him go into the back of the van.
Jay - 23-Aug-18 @ 1:28 PM
received ticket saying I was doing 71mph in variable 50 zone. had travelled a long way on motorway but do recall several cars including mine being flashed at some point. also recall thinking none of the vehicles were going over the speed limit and must be something wrong with the camera. I was certainly not driving at 71 in a 50 zone but cannot recall where the camera went off. how should I try to appeal, can one ask to have camera checked for excessive number of hits on that day, giving evidence of false readings?
Paul - 19-Aug-18 @ 4:53 PM
I have received a NIP for my boyfriends car. He is registered keeper.I have looked at the photographs online and can’t see who is driving. It was probably him. Why do you think the police are after me and how did they get my details
Elaine - 17-Aug-18 @ 6:07 PM
Nick - Your Question:
I was Driving down the motorway late night on the way to work, traveling at 69mph there was Barley any other motorway users on the road, I then entered a variable speed limit area (smart motorway) that changed to 50 as I oproached so I took my foot off the accelerator and proceeded to slow down I then noticed the flash from the camera and a few days later Iv been hit with a speeding ticket, do these zones expect you slam all on even tho the road ahead is clear?? Would this be a case I should try seek legal advice on?? Also there was no road works nor was there any small road maintenance works going on within at least 15 mile of the location.Any advise would be appreciated cheers.

Our Response:
Yes if a 50mph variable speed limit is in place you should usually have time to see the sign and be travelling at that speed before you reach the sign (that's how they're supposed to be designed). Stating that there was no good reason for the 50mph speed limit at the time is unlikely to be considered a defence.
NoPenaltyPoints - 10-Aug-18 @ 2:56 PM
Psychoshoes - Your Question:
I’ve had a NIP - all the details are correct including registration number - but the details of the car are incorrect- it says it was a blue Tiguan T estate. I have a red Tiguan and it’s not an estate car. I haven’t sent the form back yet - what should I do?

Our Response:
Can you safely assume it's your vehicle? Can you ask for photo evidence? It it's simply a typographical error you can't easily reject it. If you feel, however, that the details of the NIP are completely wrong you should say so. - return the form and say that it's not your vehicle although the number is correct.
NoPenaltyPoints - 10-Aug-18 @ 2:23 PM
I was Driving down the motorway late night on the way to work, traveling at 69mph there was Barley any other motorway users on the road, I then entered a variable speed limit area (smart motorway) that changed to 50 as I oproached so I took my foot off the accelerator and proceeded to slow down I then noticed the flash from the camera and a few days later Iv been hit with a speeding ticket, do these zones expect you slam all on even tho the road ahead is clear?? Would this be a case I should try seek legal advice on?? Also there was no road works nor was there any small road maintenance works going on within at least 15 mile of the location. Any advise would be appreciated cheers.
Nick - 10-Aug-18 @ 7:50 AM
I’ve had a NIP - all the details are correct including registration number - but the details of the car are incorrect- it says it was a blue Tiguan T estate. I have a red Tiguan and it’s not an estate car. I haven’t sent the form back yet - what should I do?
Psychoshoes - 9-Aug-18 @ 4:55 PM
M - Your Question:
My son missed his stop on the last train of the evening, which meant me being woken at 1.30am and travelling 25 miles down the A127 to Westcliffe to get him ( in the world we live intoday panick sets in that your child is alone, at that time of the morning also drunk, he'd been out to a works function ) which made my panic worse, the arse in this law breaking society is that had and if the police protected civilians correctly I would of needed to panicky for his safety , as do most normal parents. There is of course an argument to say had he not missed his stop I wouldn't of ever gone.Point being not a point on my license for 12 years , no accidents for 30 years , I get caught doing 62mph in a 50mph, trying to get to my son as quick as possible in panicky at 1.30am does no one ever get the chance to put there case forward rather than go to court ??? What will I get prosecuted ? Will I get the offer of the course ? One more ironic twist to this , my sons a Lawyer.

Our Response:
Your speed is within the guideline limits for the offer a speed awareness course but these are offered at the discretion of the police, so it's not a definite. If you want to appeal/present your case, it will go to court - that's just the procedure unfortunately for you.
NoPenaltyPoints - 1-Aug-18 @ 3:03 PM
My son missed his stop on the last train of the evening, which meant me being woken at 1.30am and travelling 25 miles down the A127 to Westcliffe to get him ( in the world we live intoday panick sets in that your child is alone, at that time of the morning also drunk, he'd been out to a works function ) which made my panic worse, the arse in this law breaking society is that had and if the police protected civilians correctly I would of needed to panicky for his safety , as do most normal parents. There is of course an argument to say had he not missed his stop I wouldn't of ever gone. Point being not a point on my license for 12 years , no accidents for 30 years , I get caught doing 62mph in a 50mph, trying to get to my son as quick as possible in panicky at 1.30am does no one ever get the chance to put there case forward rather than go to court ???What will I get prosecuted ? Will I get the offer of the course ? One more ironic twist to this , my sons a Lawyer.
M - 31-Jul-18 @ 12:24 PM
Hi my girlfriend received a speeding ticket saying she had been caught going 34mph on a 30mbp road. However I was driving her car that day so know this was me, she then had to fill a form out to say this was me and put my details in. The next week I received the speeding ticket except it stated I was doing 35mph on a 30mph road and not 34mph as stated on the original ticket to my girlfriend. Unfortunately the original ticket had the form on the back of it so that was sent back with the form meaning I have no proof the speed has been changed. Is there anything I can do/should do about this that will make a difference? Thanks
Runlucky - 27-Jul-18 @ 8:49 PM
su - Your Question:
I was doing 44mph on a 30mph zone. I was unaware of the speed of the zone (first time driving down the road) and because I was driving late at night I did not see the speed limit either (the road is full of large trees and I believe blocked the site of where the camera is). I am wondering whether it is possible to request for a speeding awareness course instead (I would be eligible if I did 42mph)? thanks

Our Response:
A 30mph speedlimit area is recognisable because of street lighting and the lack of other speed limit signs, so you will not be able to challenge this, not will you be able to challenge because the camera wasn't visible. The cut of (maximum limit) in the recommended guidelines for a speed awareness course is 42mph in a 30 mph zone so it's very unlikely you'll be offered a course.
NoPenaltyPoints - 25-Jul-18 @ 2:14 PM
I was doing 44mph on a 30mph zone. I was unaware of the speed of the zone (first time driving down the road) and because I was driving late at night I did not see the speed limit either (the road is full of large trees and I believe blocked the site of where the camera is). I am wondering whether it is possible to request for a speeding awareness course instead (I would be eligible if I did 42mph)? thanks
su - 24-Jul-18 @ 2:34 PM
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