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Challenging a Speeding Fine

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 27 Mar 2017 | 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 £60 fine and three to six Penalty Points. But fines can be larger than this depending on the circumstances, and fines can even hit the £1000 mark. Guilty offenders who are offered a fixed penalty will usually have their licence endorsed with a minimum number of penalty points and a £60 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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I recently got pulled over after doing 40mph on a road that A:) didnt have any speed repeaters and B:) didnt have any streetlighting (other than at one junction halfway down the road) I was told that this was a 30mph zone. What do you think my chances are at contesting the points and fine? I dont have any points on my license but I think its an annoyance that they are totally abusing the system and flexing their power because they think they can.
Nexial - 27-Mar-17 @ 12:43 PM
Hi, I have just found a letter on my doorstep telling me I was caught doing 36 in a 30 in a hire car two months ago, I assume it was sent to Enterprise first. This letter where it's been redirected is dated a month ago and is addressed to the house next door rather than to me, correct name but wrong address, I have never lived next door, have been at this address for 10 years now and the DVLA have my correct address. Can I challenge this because they sent the NIP to the wrong house? Thank you Leah
Leah - 23-Mar-17 @ 8:27 PM
I have been sent a NIP reminder notice from a hire car I had back in January. It doesn't state how fast I was going, should it?
Darrell - 20-Mar-17 @ 1:43 PM
I was flashed on the motorway at 75mph,it was 3am in the morning,no traffic,no incidents,no roadworks,at some point appears on the indicator board 60 and exactly there was the camera,i did not even had time to slow down,it was just 5 seconds between the new speed limit to the camera flash,how can I break so quick on motorway?
Ady - 16-Mar-17 @ 2:49 PM
PamJ - Your Question:
Hi, my partner has been caught by average speed check cameras at the same spot twice, on the only 2 occasions he has driven along that stretch of road during the temporary average speed check put in for roadworks. Both times he used cruise control to ensure he didn't go over the limit. When we received the first fine we assumed he made a mistake and paid the fine. Then, naturally, when he drove along the same spot again he as even more careful, using the cruise control, but also paying lots of attention he didn't go over the 40mph limit. But we received another fine, and strangely it recorded exactly the same speed as the first fine had - 49 in a 40 mph average speed check zone. It seems really odd that the same speed was recorded and neither time was my partner aware he had gone over the limit. It suggests the camera might be recording the time incorrectly as it would be hard to go that much over without realising, especially when being extra careful not to.Can you see any option for us to challenge it?

Our Response:
If your partner is convinced that he was not speeding and his cruise control was set to 40 it might be worth challenging. It's worth speaking to a legal professional/motor lawyer and also double checking the cruise control facility on the vehicle.
NoPenaltyPoints - 14-Mar-17 @ 11:56 AM
Hi, my partner has been caught by average speed check cameras at the same spot twice, on the only 2 occasions he has driven along that stretch of road during the temporary average speed check put in for roadworks. Both times he used cruise control to ensure he didn't go over the limit. When we received the first fine we assumed he made a mistake and paid the fine. Then, naturally, when he drove along the same spot again he as even more careful, using the cruise control, but also paying lots of attention he didn't go over the 40mph limit. But we received another fine, and strangely it recorded exactly the same speed as the first fine had - 49 in a 40 mph average speed check zone. It seems really odd that the same speed was recorded and neither time was my partner aware he had gone over the limit. It suggests the camera might be recording the time incorrectly as it would be hard to go that much over without realising, especially when being extra careful not to. Can you see any option for us to challenge it?
PamJ - 12-Mar-17 @ 9:53 AM
Hello i received a speeding fine today on the 07/03/2017 They said i was caught on 09/02/2017 Notice issued date 23/02/2017 Can they get away with this? as it was first class post and doeskin take 2 weeks to come though the post. sneaky that they have dated it exactly 14 days after the offence took place, but not sent it in the post until to weeks after As it has only just come though the post and i wasn't even aware there was a camera
Patch - 7-Mar-17 @ 7:46 AM
Naz - Your Question:
I got speed camera it was 20mph out of 25 mph was my speed that is two way normal that road used to be 30mph they change to 20mph.Can I challenge for this?

Our Response:
No, 20mph roads have signs displayed. If there are no signs, then yes you can challenge it.
NoPenaltyPoints - 24-Feb-17 @ 12:27 PM
I got speed camera it was 20mph out of 25 mph was my speed that is two way normal that road used to be 30mph they change to 20mph . Can I challenge for this?
Naz - 21-Feb-17 @ 11:36 PM
daz - Your Question:
I got flashed doing 43 mph in a 30 zone but there are no road signs at all saying the limit have I git a case

Our Response:
There are no speed limit signs in a 30 mph zone. This is something you learn when you take your driving test. In built-up areas, where there is street lighting, you should always assume that the limit is 30 mph until you see a sign saying otherwise.
NoPenaltyPoints - 20-Feb-17 @ 12:44 PM
i got flashed doing 43 mph in a 30 zone but there are no road signs at all saying the limit have i git a case
daz - 18-Feb-17 @ 8:26 AM
Hi. Got caught doing 41mph in a 30. It was a Sunday and I was stressed because my partner was in pain and we were on our way to the hospital. It was because of the second ectopic pregnancy we have suffered in the last month. And I was worried she would need surgery for the second time.Anyway. Wrote to camera unit. They asked for a letter from doctor. I got confirming reason for our visit to the hospital on that Sunday. Sent it off. Letter back from camera unit. No acknowledge of my letter or circumstances but 3 options. Course , points or court. What should i do ?
Les - 9-Feb-17 @ 11:20 PM
Sunday morning I went through a speed camera .It says I waz doing 38 m.p.h yet on checking my tracker it says 35 m.p.h. I except I waz speeding but is there a case to be had
None - 2-Feb-17 @ 7:33 PM
Disappointed - Your Question:
Back in mid September 2016 I was driving on the A46 around 10.30pm heading south when couple cars full of youths started driving right up my rear they where playing cat and mouse in their little boy racer cars they seemed to be following me since leaving the A15 or just unfortunate they heading same wayEither way it was wreck less and frighteningI was hoping a police car might pass but 15 miles or more no signI am 54 lone female driving home and I was feeling pretty vulnerable heart pounding as we approached roundabouts in case I had to stop and they got out the cars etcIn this day and age you never know but I had locked the doorsAnyway that's the scene and start of my problemI decided to speed up a little at next roundabout and leave them behind and as I did I was flashed by speed cam doing 80mph my journey home was a disaster I had ran over a bunny already and my dog then decided to throw up all over the back seat ??I text my partner of 2 years by now in tears but was home safe finally he was ok about it as cars registered in his name at his address3 months later the NIP arrived at his home just a couple days before xmas thinking I had been lucky enough to have escaped the offence after such a journey I was gutted.Anyway new year he filled it in returned it notifying them I was the driver after he had been told about the 14 day thing but being straight as they come and not wanting to get points on himself he went ahead and returned the details refusing to let me return it and dispute the 14 days which I thought was unreasonable as I would have allowed him the opportunity shoe being on the other foot and all that.So yesterday I received the NIP now registered to my address in my name and am unsure what my options are as whilst I admit I was driving I felt at the time it was unavoidable and had this been issued earlier I would have informed the police I even had a partial number plate off one the cars chasing me which I have since thrown away as I thought the matter had gone away and was no longer neededMy partners not being very helpful and refusing to consider any other option apart from pay it and get point and move on but I am feeling very disappointed by his lack of support and not happy that I should take this on the chinThis will be my first ever offence and I feel like I am being punished whilst keeping myself safe on the road?

Our Response:
If you want to claim mitigating circumstances, you will need to be prepared for the case to go to court. It might be worth seeking professional legal advice before making your decision.
NoPenaltyPoints - 30-Jan-17 @ 10:50 AM
Back in mid September 2016 I was driving on the A46 around 10.30pm heading south when couple cars full of youths started driving right up my rear they where playing cat and mouse in their little boy racer cars they seemed to be following me since leaving the A15 or just unfortunate they heading same way Either way it was wreck less and frightening I was hoping a police car might pass but 15 miles or more no sign I am 54 lone female driving home and i was feeling pretty vulnerable heart pounding as we approached roundabouts in case I had to stop and they got out the cars etc In this day and age you never know but I had locked the doors Anyway that's the scene and start of my problem I decided to speed up a little at next roundabout and leave them behind and as I did I was flashed by speed cam doing 80mph my journey home was a disaster I had ran over a bunny already and my dog then decided to throw up all over the back seat ?? I text my partner of 2 years by now in tears but was home safe finally he was ok about it as cars registered in his name at his address 3 months later the NIP arrived at his home just a couple days before xmas thinking I had been lucky enough to have escaped the offence after such a journey I was gutted. Anyway new year he filled it in returned it notifying them I was the driver after he had been told about the 14 day thing but being straight as they come and not wanting to get points on himself he went ahead and returned the details refusing to let me return it and dispute the 14 days which I thought was unreasonable as I would have allowed him the opportunity shoe being on the other foot and all that. So yesterday I received the NIP now registered to my address in my name and am unsure what my options are as whilst I admit I was driving I felt at the time it was unavoidable and had this been issued earlier I would have informed the police I even had a partial number plate off one the cars chasing me which I have since thrown away as I thought the matter had gone away and was no longer needed My partners not being very helpful and refusing to consider any other option apart from pay it and get point and move on but I am feeling very disappointed by his lack of support and not happy that I should take this on the chin This will be my first ever offence and I feel like I am being punished whilst keeping myself safe on the road?
Disappointed - 29-Jan-17 @ 1:21 PM
Hi, I've just received a speeding ticket for doing 30 in a temporary 20 (20 when lights flash outside a school). The road is usually a 30. The 20 sign is just after a roundabout and is obscured from view by an icecream van which is there every school day. Therefore I thought I was driving at the speed limit of 30. There are no markings on road to indicate that it's a 20 or even a variable speed limit and no signs anywhere else. Effectively I couldn't see the sign never mind whether the lights were flashing. Thanks
Flickx - 27-Jan-17 @ 2:24 PM
I was pulled over doing 37 in a 20 zone (Richmond Park). Officer gave me a "Traffic Offence Report". He said it would be upto the Traffic Prosecutions Department to decide on the outcome. Its coming to a week now but I haven't recieved anything regarding this. What would the likely outcode be? Instant ban/ summons or is there a chance of recieving an FPN/ driving course. What is the likely outcome?
JimSmith23 - 25-Jan-17 @ 2:30 PM
Got caught by a fixed camera doing 37 in a 30 last week. Got my NIP on Saturday. Just noticed today that some road markings are incorrect (Im a traffic engineer!!) The longitudinal lines are 4m long with 2 metre gaps which are correct however there is hatching down the middle of the road which is at 2m intervals and not 3 metres as stated in the traffic signs manual. Have I grounds to get off as the speed limit is unenforceable?
Daveyboy - 23-Jan-17 @ 1:06 PM
Hi, I believe I was caught in my work van exceeding 3.5 tonnes on a single carriageway doing 60mph however at the time of the alleged offence the road had broken into a dual carriageway(overtaking lane) which also had national speed limit signs at the bottom of the hill. I believed the road to be a dual carriageway but there was no central reservation however it was an over taking Lane and I had overtaken a lorry but never exceeded 60mph believing that the road limit on that over taking Lane was 60mph for vans. Do you think I'll receive a speeding fine for this?
Danny - 23-Jan-17 @ 1:06 PM
can i really get done for doing 26 on a 20 road on a bank holiday
angry - 21-Jan-17 @ 8:07 PM
I was driving a hire van when i got flashed on the 6th of December. I received the NIP on the 16th of January. Surely this timeframe is too long, can I appeal?
Dav B - 21-Jan-17 @ 4:08 PM
I have bean cought on a Variable speed camera where the speed limit changed from 50 to 60 and I was driving 60 the camera catch me what I suppose to do now?
Lukas - 19-Jan-17 @ 7:01 PM
DelBoyT - Your Question:
I got 2 tickets from the same journey 10 minutes apart - 37 in a 30, and then 62 on a 50 stretch of the motorway. This was on Boxing Day. Would any of the following help with an appeal against getting six points?Same journey (ten minutes apart).No workforce in road on motorway roadworks because it was Boxing Day.62 on a 50 NIP was certified as being served by 1st class post on 2nd Jan, but Royal Mail wouldn't have collected their post on 2nd Jan because it was a bank holiday.Thanks.

Our Response:
We can't see of any reason why an appeal would be successful; the NIP was sent within the correct time frame and you were actually speeding in both instances. Sorry we can't be of any help here.
NoPenaltyPoints - 18-Jan-17 @ 1:50 PM
Hi, I got a NIP for doing 69 in a temporary 50 zone on the motorway. It was foggy and rainy and there was no flashes whatsoever. How can I appeal this, they claim to have a photo but no link to a website for me to view it? and what is the likely fine/points? Thank you so much
Lorraine - 18-Jan-17 @ 1:22 PM
I got 2 tickets from the same journey 10 minutes apart - 37 in a 30, and then 62 on a 50 stretch of the motorway. This was on Boxing Day. Would any of the following help with an appeal against getting six points? Same journey (ten minutes apart). No workforce in road on motorway roadworks because it was Boxing Day. 62 on a 50 NIP was certified as being served by 1st class post on 2nd Jan, but Royal Mail wouldn't have collected their post on 2nd Jan because it was a bank holiday. Thanks.
DelBoyT - 17-Jan-17 @ 9:49 AM
I was caught speeding at the end of August 2016 by a ANPR with a speed gun I was doing 72 in a 50 once he pulled me over he asked for my licence so I provided it. After he returned I told him I had recently changed address and I work in the transport industry and was waiting on a driver course relevant to work where I need to provide my pink license (which I'd already paid for the course)I told him I'd moved in the last week and that I was going to change address as soon as I had done my course he noted my new address down and I have proof of this.I asked the officer what I should do in the meantime with the green ticket he provided to me and he replied. To wait for a letter in the post. At the beginning of January 2017 I received a court summons for the speeding offence and the next day a plea letter both dated sent on 30th December 2016 so I called the court before I had received a plea and asked why I'd been summoned they said they sent a plea letter which I had not received.They then said the letter was sent to my old address do I stand any chance of winning if I contest?
Chris - 13-Jan-17 @ 2:59 PM
I was caught speeding at the end of August 2016 by a ANPR with a speed gun I was doing 72 in a 50 once he pulled me over he asked for my licence so I provided it. After he returned I told him I had recently changed address and I work in the transport industry and was waiting on a driver course relevant to work where I need to provide my pink license (which I'd already paid for the course)I told him I'd moved in the last week and that I was going to change address as soon as I had done my course.I asked the officer what I should do in the meantime with the green ticket he provided to me and he replied. To wait for a letter in the post. At the beginning of January 2017 I received a court summons for the speeding offence and the next day a plea letter both dated sent on 30th December 2016 so I called the court before I had received a plea and asked why I'd been summoned they said they sent a plea letter which I had not received.They then said the letter was sent to my old address do I stand any chance of winning if I contest?
Chris - 13-Jan-17 @ 2:56 PM
D - Your Question:
I've just had a letter informing me that I was speeding at 47 mph on a road that now had a speed limit of 40. For years the speed limit on this road was 50. I've driven down this road today and the signs have been changed (very small) to 40. I have travelled on this road every day this week and am concerned that I might have passed this camera several times, not exceeding 50, but breaking the new speed limit. Can I be prosecuted for breaking the limit each time, and can I argue that I unwittingly broke the new limit (which is the truth!)?

Our Response:
Many areas post signs to indicate that new speed limit is in place but these are not compulsory. If you think the new signs do not conform to the correct standards ( here's a guide if you need to check ), you could raise this with the police. If you are penalised for more than one incidence of speeding and it goes to court, your reasons may be seen as mitigating.
NoPenaltyPoints - 9-Jan-17 @ 2:12 PM
I've just had a letter informing me that I was speeding at 47 mph on a road that now had a speed limit of 40. For years the speed limit on this road was 50. I've driven down this road today and the signs have been changed (very small) to 40. I have travelled on this road every day this week and am concerned that I might have passed this camera several times, not exceeding 50, but breaking the new speed limit. Can I be prosecuted for breaking the limit each time, and can I argue that I unwittingly broke the new limit (which is the truth!)?
D - 7-Jan-17 @ 7:23 PM
Garfield - Your Question:
I was caught by a speed camera doing 49mph in a 40 zone. However, after revisiting the site I noticed a speed limit terminal sign was missing from its post but all other signs and road markings are present. This is on a trunk road. Does the fact that one of the two speed limit terminal signs is missing mean it invalidates the speeding offence? Thank you

Our Response:
It may possibly - as we don't have all the details we can't say for sure but this document is clear on how speed limit terminal signs should be placed - see page 106
NoPenaltyPoints - 5-Jan-17 @ 12:08 PM
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