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Does an NIP have to be Served Within 14 Days?

By: Tracy Wilkinson - Updated: 14 Apr 2021 | comments*Discuss
Speeding Camera Ticket Notice Of


I have just received a letter about a speeding offence that allegedley took place on the 19th August. I received the letter (dated 24th September), on the 25th September.

I was under the impression that the NIP had to be served within 14 days. This is clearly over that time, so I was wondering if you thought I would be able to use this technicality as a defence?

(Mr Adrian Moore, 4 October 2008)


If you are caught on camera committing a motoring offence, before any action can be taken against you, it is a legal requirement that you must to be informed that you have been caught breaking the law and that the authorities intend to prosecute.

Because you were 'caught on camera' rather than being stopped and served with intent to prosecute by a police officer, a Notice of Intended Prosecution or NIP, will be sent out to you - and this document will be set out in a way that complies with the regulations laid down in the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988.

Most typically, NIPs relate to speeding offences and running red lights, or similar offences and the obligation is on the authorities to have sent out the Notice in a timely fashion so that it arrives within 14 days of the offence being committed.

So what's with the 14 day limit?

The 14 day limit refers to the amount of time that the Police need to process the original Notice of Intended Prosecution. There is a lot of misinformation about the 14 day rule, but the facts are:

  • It’s not up to the police to prove that the NIP reached the registered keeper within 14 days
  • It is up to the police to be able to prove that in the normal course of events, the NIP would have arrived at the last known address of the registered keeper within the 14 day time limit

Can you explain that a little more?

The onus is not on the police to chase down the registered keeper of the offending vehicle: all they have to do is prove that they sent out the ticket in time to reach the registered keeper within 14 days if there are no ‘unusual events'.

Can you give me an example of 'unusual' events?

Things such as a postal strike, or the registered keeper no longer being at the last known address. If this happens, the ticket will not be considered void as best endeavours were undertaken to contact those responsible. If the registered keeper is, for example, a leaseholder - or company car driver ,then the driver may well be unaware of the offence within 14 days - but as long as the NIP arrived at the last known address of the registered keeper - the head office or leasing company - in time, that's what matters.

Tickets issued over the 14 day limit

If the issue date of the NIP sent to you was more than 14 days after the alleged offence took place, than you can refuse to accept it on the basis that it is time barred. This is certainly true in your case and if you appeal against the ticket on these grounds you should have no problem getting the ticket cancelled.

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I have been accused of doing 46.3mph in a 40mph zone by an average speeding camera. I received the NIP on the 14/04/2021 which was issued on the 08/04/2021 of a speeding offence which occurred on the 13/03/2021. That’s 26 days after the offence, which means they issued this NIP 12 days late. Is this sufficient grounds for an appeal? Also, I have already responded to the letter agreeing it was me as there was no option to appeal it, will this impact on my appeal?
Skeptic - 14-Apr-21 @ 7:32 PM
BAZ - 10-Mar-21 @ 3:43 PM
Hi there, I received a NIP dated 25/11/20, the date of the offence was 21/09/20. Their was no communication at all and on the 18/01/21 and 19/01/21 I had police visit me for enquires and another NIP issued on the 26/01/21 do I have grounds to ignore this NIP or return to sender with 'reject outwith 14 days' written on the letter?
Talbot - 17-Feb-21 @ 9:38 AM
Received a Nip on 15/2/21 the letter was dated 12/2/21 for a reported offence on the 11/01/21 so the letter was produced until 32 days after offence. Can I refuse to accept it?
Billy - 15-Feb-21 @ 11:29 AM
I received an NIP on 09/02/21. The date on the letter is 05/02/21 The alleged offensive is dated 21/01/21 So the letter is dated 15 days after the offence and I didn’t receive the letter until 19 days after the offence . Do I have grounds to have the ticket cancelled ?
Bryn - 9-Feb-21 @ 4:29 PM
Hi I was issued with a N.I.P for a speeding offence the date on the letter said 21/01/2021 it was sent I got the letter on the 23/01/2021 and the date of the offence was 13/11/2020 can I appeal this as it’s way past the 14day period and get it cancelled
Waz - 4-Feb-21 @ 7:36 PM
Just received a letter dated the 07/01/21 for an offence on the 18/08/20. I was the driver but the vehicle wasn’t mine that I was caught in, I know the owner didn’t deal with his letter until December so I’d that why I’ve only just received it and am I within my rights to refuse it as it is 4 months after the offence and isn’t my fault the owner didn’t respond to his letter sooner? Thanks
Asb - 10-Jan-21 @ 8:31 AM
I may have been caught speeding on the 24/12/2020 and I haven’t gotten a NIP yet in the post (7/1/21) am I in the clear or do I need to take into account Christmas/New Years into the 14 days
Nina - 7-Jan-21 @ 10:45 AM
I’ve receive 4 NIP & I’ve asked for details of date received from lease company as obviously this could impact my licence status. Do you have any recommendations?
Dave - 31-Dec-20 @ 4:46 PM
I got caught by a mobile speed camera on the 12/11/2020 but the NIP sent to my employer was dated the 01/12/2020? Can I return as time barred?
Supra driver - 10-Dec-20 @ 11:42 AM
Hi My employer has received an NIP for the van I drive on 20/11/20 for an offence on 30/10/20 can I appeal because NIP was issued date was over 14 days period?
Dean - 4-Dec-20 @ 6:09 PM
Just looking for advice. I received a NIP that was dated the 6th October for doing 36 in a 30 zone on the 3rd of august (2 month). Can I appeal against it since it has past its 14 day period and if so how do I go about it? I’m unsure if I’ve done the right thing as I did send the form back to say I was the driver at the time of the offence.
Kris - 26-Nov-20 @ 8:50 PM
Received an NIP on 10/10/20 for speeding offence that took place on 24/09/20. The letter is dated 05/10/20. The date on letter is within 14 days but as it was not received in post until after the 14 days, can we get this cancelled
Damus - 25-Nov-20 @ 11:58 AM
Hi I have a3 year lease vehicle and have recently a notice of intended prosecution. The alleged offence was 18/9/2020. The date on the letter was 22/10/2020 and I did not receive the letter till 17/11/2020. Can I refuse as this was past the time restriction?
Dpo - 21-Nov-20 @ 7:08 PM
I was caught doing 72mph on a reduced 60mph stretch of the M5 on 5th October. Avon & Somerset wrote to my lease company (not sure when) who didn't inform me the keeper of the car until 29th October. I got the NIP from A&S on November 6th. Am I in anyway able to challenge this as technically they failed to inform me the keeper of the car until one month after the offence or as they informed the lease company in a timely manner they can proceed.
Smiler - 18-Nov-20 @ 3:29 PM
I have a letter from north Yorkshire police saying the van i drive was speeding on A171 58 mph on 19/09/20 and the letteris dated 12/11/20 is it still valid
Brian - 14-Nov-20 @ 7:38 PM
Received an NIP on 10/11/20 for speeding offence that took place on 24/10/20. The letter is dated 04/11/20. The date on letter is within 14 days but as it was not received in post until after the 14 days, can we get this cancelled?
Monkey - 11-Nov-20 @ 12:48 PM
I have recived a NIP dated 04/11/2020 for an speeding alleged speeding offence of 38 in a 30 zone on the 18/08/2020 there is no photo of the car attached. Do I have to pay? if not what do i do please?
Hay - 7-Nov-20 @ 9:28 AM
I have just received a NIP dated 04/11/2020 for an offence on 08/07/2020. I relinquished ownership of the vehicle on 31/08/2020 and notified the DVLA as such. Should I appeal?
Lola - 5-Nov-20 @ 4:44 PM
Hi I have been sent a NIP today 05/11/20 for an offence dated 28/07/20, I am trade plate driver and my employer wasn't notified until last week can I appeal this as it is well over the 14 day period
Dazlov2703 - 5-Nov-20 @ 2:40 PM
Hi I received an NIP on 27/10/20 for an offence on 23/08/20. Caught on a variable speed camera47 in 40 mph on the M1. I've returned the form. Can I appeal as it was more than 14 days notification?
Sandy - 3-Nov-20 @ 7:27 AM
Hello, I have been studying this website for 30 minutes now & cannot find the answer i need. Hopefully someone will give me a definitive answer to the below. On 4/5/20 i was recorded travelling on the M5 motorway at 96.77mph by 2 officers following me in an unmarked car, using a vascar device. I was stopped, given a ticket and went on my way. I received the Single Justice Procedure notice on 7/10/20, so over 5 months after date of offence. The correct home address was on my driving license, which they took my details from at the time, the actual vehicle was registered to my company address, which is different to my home address, not sure if that makes a difference though. So to recap offence date is 4/5/20, first paperwork of any sort i received on 7/10/20 (although it says posted on 5/10/20 on the letter. Any advice gratefully received, thank you in advance, regards colt
colt - 12-Oct-20 @ 11:46 AM
Received a PCN on 09/10/20 for the following alleged contravention 52. On the PCN data was 20/09/20, the date of notice on letter 08/10/20. This is almost 20 daysafter. What do I need to do please?
Bill - 10-Oct-20 @ 8:32 AM
Hi I recieved an NIP on 26th Sept, the date on the letter states 24th Sept and the speeding offence took place on 29th Aug. I sent the letter back admitting the offence. Today I received a letter stating I either had to complete a course or accept a fixed penalty. As the date issued is over 14 days of the date the offence took place, is this letter void?
Bernie - 3-Oct-20 @ 10:53 AM
I have received an NIP for 1. Driving without due care and attention 2.Failing to stop at a road traffic accident and 3. failing to report a road traffic accident. The details are that it was my father driving the vehicle and was unaware that he had caused any damage to a parked car (he stopped and checked). The incident happened on 11/9 and the NIP was dated 28/9. As this is outside the 14 days, does this invalidate it?
SALLY_M - 30-Sep-20 @ 9:48 AM
My partner received a NIP on 26 Aug relating to an offence on 11 April. I was the driver (doing 90 in a 70 limit) and he returned the form to state this. I then received the NIP on 17 September. I’ve queried the time lag, they’ve come back to say that it’s valid as was initially sent to my partner (the registered keeper) on 17 April. It wasn’t, or if it was, he never received it. So I’m now querying this. I feel fairly confident that I can reject the fine as it’s over 4 months out of time but what happens if the police refuse to confirm the case is closed? Do they keep pursuing the fine; would I eventually need to go to court to argue my case? Or are they likely to drop it as can’t give me the evidence I need?
JuJu - 27-Sep-20 @ 8:37 AM
Hi. Company received a nip dated 14.08 for speeding 84 in 70 on dual carriageway. However company moved into new offices and is shared building and they did not get the ticket until the 11th. Where do we stand with this. Surely if the letter is dated the 14.08 we would not of received the letter within 14 days of the offence. Pls help
Gill - 21-Sep-20 @ 10:15 AM
I have just been served a NIP for an offence dated 28th august. The date on the nip is 11th sept which is the 14th day. I recieved it on 14th sept. I am under the impression they must send it so that it will reach me within 14 days under normal circumstances. However if they sent it on the 14th day, even if they sent it 1st class it would be past the 14 day deadline.... is it time barred? Can i appeal/reject?
Aaron - 15-Sep-20 @ 11:35 AM
I received a NIP today 12/09/2020 for when I was pulled over by an unmarked unit Back in March. Where do I stand as this is months down the line
Jo - 12-Sep-20 @ 3:22 PM
Hi there. I got a NIP through the post this morning 11-09-20 for a speeding offence committed on 31st May. I then filled in the form and sent it off. I have just been directed to this site to now find that apparently it’s not valid. The fact that I’ve already sent the form off, does this mean I can still contest it?
Matt - 11-Sep-20 @ 4:40 PM
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