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Does an NIP have to be Served Within 14 Days?

By: Tracy Wilkinson - Updated: 22 Aug 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Speeding Camera Ticket Notice Of

Q.

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)

A.

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've done around 65mph on a 50mph dual carriageway and felt like I got flashed by a speed camera. I done it on 8th August around 1am. It's now 22nd August. Am I in the clear? Or the letter can still come?
Armz - 22-Aug-17 @ 7:03 PM
Flunky54 - Your Question:
Hi,I was caught speeding on the M3 after overtaking a slow moving BMW, as I flew past him at 99.55 mph he put the siren and lights on! This was on May 8th, I received the dreaded paperwork today:- Single Justice Procedure Notice with 21 days to plead guilty/not guilty, my question is around this 14 day notice period as everyone has told me that it was 3 months ago so stop worrying but I am not sure what to do next ?

Our Response:
Did he actually pull you over at the time? If so, an NIP will not be issued and the 14 day rule does not apply.
NoPenaltyPoints - 21-Aug-17 @ 1:59 PM
Hi, I was caught speeding on the M3 after overtaking a slow moving BMW, as I flew past him at 99.55 mph he put the siren and lights on! This was on May 8th, I received the dreaded paperwork today:- Single Justice Procedure Notice with 21 days to plead guilty/not guilty, my question is around this 14 day notice period as everyone has told me that it was 3 months ago so stop worrying but I am not sure what to do next ?
Flunky54 - 18-Aug-17 @ 10:37 AM
DWP - Your Question:
I have received a NIP which states I was caught speeding at 84mph on A3 Dual carriageway (limit 70mph) Offence committed 5th July 2017 NIP dated 27th July 2017. Envelope stamped same day.In my calculations that is 22 days in which NIP served.I am the reg. owner of the car so the NIP has come direct to my home address where vehicle registered.This is over the 14 day limit. I have a form to complete to confirm if I was the driver which I must return to enable them to prosecute. As this NIP was received 22 days after offence, should I complete form and return with letter saying this is over 14 days. Or just write letter to say they have contravened 14 day rule.

Our Response:
The information on how dispute this with the police is in our guide which you can read HERE. The basic procedure is as follows:
Write to the police force that sent you the NIP stating that you are rejecting the NIP on the grounds that it was sent to you after the 14 day period required
Copy the NIP, highlighting the date that the offence took place
Make a copy of your envelope, which details the postmark
NoPenaltyPoints - 7-Aug-17 @ 10:52 AM
I have received a NIP which states I was caught speeding at 84mph on A3 Dual carriageway (limit 70mph) Offence committed 5th July 2017 NIP dated 27th July 2017. Envelope stamped same day.In my calculations that is 22 days in which NIP served.I am the reg. owner of the car so the NIP has come direct to my home address where vehicle registered.This is over the 14 day limit. I have a form to complete to confirm if I was the driver which I must return to enable them to prosecute. As this NIP was received 22 days after offence, should I complete form and return with letter saying this is over 14 days. Or just write letter to say they have contravened 14 day rule.
DWP - 3-Aug-17 @ 8:49 AM
Brew85 - Your Question:
Received a NIP today dated 27.7.17 for doing 60 in a 50 zone (was one of those variable speed limit zones) but the offence is dated 26.6.17. My drivers licence holds my current address and that's where they've sent the letter, so am I right in assuming that it's time barred? Also how do I go about refusing it?

Our Response:
What about the vehicle document V5? Does that have your current name and address on it? Your driving licence is irrelevant really.
NoPenaltyPoints - 1-Aug-17 @ 12:06 PM
Received a NIP today dated 27.7.17 for doing 60 in a 50 zone (was one of those variable speed limit zones) but the offence is dated 26.6.17.My drivers licence holds my current address and that's where they've sent the letter, so am I right in assuming that it's time barred? Also how do I go about refusing it?
Brew85 - 28-Jul-17 @ 6:26 PM
spaniel lady - Your Question:
I was driving a hire car which was organized through my company, I received a note on 27th February 2017 from them that my car had been caught speeding on 27th January, the NIP went to the hire company who stamped it as received on 6th FEB 2017, they obviously completed it and sent it to the Police, I never saw this, only the second page of the document. I chased the hire company to no avail and eventually contacted the police's camera division who advised me that I did not need to take any further action. I have now received at my work address a final warning dated 19th July 2017 advising that I have 7 days to respond. This is almost 6 months from the date of he offence? can I challenge this?

Our Response:
You cannot challenge this under the 14 day rule. The hire company will have simply passed on the address of your company to the police following the issue of the first NIP. Your company should then have forwarded it to you or completed and returned it with your details on. If you have been given a chance to respond within 7 days then you should do so.
NoPenaltyPoints - 27-Jul-17 @ 1:52 PM
i was driving a hire car which was organized through my company, I received a note on 27th February 2017 from them that my car had been caught speeding on 27th January, the NIP went to the hire company who stamped it as received on 6th FEB 2017, they obviously completed it and sent it to the Police, I never saw this, only the second page of the document. I chased the hire company to no avail and eventually contacted the police's camera division who advised me that I did not need to take any further action. I have now received at my work address afinal warning dated 19th July 2017 advising that I have 7 days to respond. This is almost 6 months from the date of he offence? can I challenge this?
spaniel lady - 24-Jul-17 @ 11:14 AM
Hi. I am the registered keeper of the vehicle in question. I was caught speeding by a camera (in a police van), although i remember the incident happened a month previous to when I received the letter so I know it expired the 14 day rule. I however did not know about this rule (this was earlier this year) and replied, accepted responsibility, and therefore went on a speed awareness course. Meaning I can't go on another one for 3 years. If i flag this up now will they take the rule into account? My argument is that the ticket shouldnt have been issued so late and that I should still have the oppurtunity to go on a speed awareness course should I need to in the next 3 years. How likely is it that they will take this into account and let me have another speed awareness course in the future as i shouldnt have had to go on the first one in the first place? I have also yesterday just received another one which is outdated by 2 months, so i am going to ring them up and tell them this 14 day rule has been broken and that i refuse to accept it. Is that the correct way to go about it? Please let me know as soon as you can. Many Thanks Omar123
Omar123 - 21-Jul-17 @ 10:54 AM
I was pulled over Jan 16th for speeding and was told they would ring me and let me know if I would be charged I have today July 15 had a letter and forms to fill in saying I am being prosicuted for speeding Have they gone over the time limit!
Jonboy01647 - 15-Jul-17 @ 5:50 PM
My car was flashed by a Fixed Gatso camera at 23:31pm on 8th February 2017 - alleged speed 36 in a 30 zone. I have a few points to raise as to the validity of this and the mitigating circumstances. The streets lights were not working - defective and the street was in total darkness. No camera was visible and there were no 30mph signs for miles. I received an NIP notice on 13th February 2017 - within the allotted time of 14 days. A few days later ( still within the 14 day period)I received a call on my mobile phone from a woman at Crest accident reduction team asking me why I had not completed the paperwork. I stated I intend to appeal. I asked her position and was advised she was a civilian. she began to make threats over the phone of prosecution then put the phone down. I called them back on the telephone number on the NIP letter and a man answered it - I asked the man his position and told him what had just occurred. I asked him for his position and again he stated he was a civilian. I asked how the woman who called me got my mobile number - he stated they got it from previous records going back to 2013. I asked him who gave him permission to access my personal records from 4 years earlier. I challenged this data protection breach as at the time I had not been charged with any offence in 2013 as the case was thrown out of court. I had not been arrested at all - merely summoned to court and aquitted. I contacted the professional standards department with regards this data breach - however the professional standards dept handed the case to a traffic cop to deal with. I then had another call from the traffic cop stating he was assigned to Crest Accident reduction team. I raised this data breach and he assured me he would look into the matter - A week or 2 passed and I received a letter from the traffic cop stating my details had been retained on file from 2013 and the letter was worded in a way that implied I was a criminal - deformation of my character etc. I contacted the solicitors who represented me in 2013 and they advised me the police can't do such as I was never charged and later acquitted of any implied crime. I have a clean police record. I called the professional standards department back and raised how the letter was written in such manner that the traffic cop had implied - as if I had been charged and convicted of something. I also raised why the professional standards department had passed my complaint re data protection breaches to a traffic cop? I was advised that as it was a traffic issue they signposted it back to Crest. I requested a written response from the professional standards department as data protection protection breaches are not traffic cop issues to deal with. I received a response from the professional standards department which in its self is completely contradictory - it states the traffic cop was a temporary seargeant - but later referred to him as an inspector twice. This letter
Marley - 14-Jul-17 @ 1:26 AM
Just wondering if someone could help me, i was sent a speeding fine that took place on the 11th of May and the letter was dated 3rd of July, will this be included with the 14 day rule and how do i go about appealing this? Also i had already sent back my information before someone had told me about the 14 day rule and i had started to do my research. I would really appreciate some feedback or even better some support, Thank you Emma
Emma - 10-Jul-17 @ 9:55 AM
Hiya I got a ticket can it get sent out to a different add so my boss don't see it coz it wil go to his house
Nice - 9-Jul-17 @ 11:26 AM
Hi, Does the 14 day rule include the date of the actual offence? Thank you.
Jsmithe - 7-Jul-17 @ 4:44 PM
Philthered - Your Question:
I drive a company car and my head office recieved the NIP on the 23rd of June. The alleged offence took place on the 3rd of May and the issue date on the NIP is the 20th of June. Am I protected by the 14 dau rule?Also, my company HR manager filoed in my details on the NIP as the driver and sent it back before informing me. Can I still contest this if I am indeed covered by the 14 day rule?

Our Response:
If your company is the registered keeper of the vehicle, so the NIP was the first one sent to them then you may have been able to reject it on the basis that it was not issued within 14 days. The fact that is was completed and not rejected might render this impossible (we're not absolutely sure). Also if the company leases the vehicle and the registered keeper is the lease company, then the police will have taken longer to trace you and the 14 day rule will not apply.
NoPenaltyPoints - 5-Jul-17 @ 1:01 PM
I drive a company car and my head office recieved the NIP on the 23rd of June. The alleged offence took place on the 3rd of May and the issue date on the NIP is the 20th of June. Am i protected by the 14 dau rule? Also, my company HR manager filoed in my details on the NIP as the driver and sent it back before informing me. Can i still contest this if i am indeed covered by the 14 day rule?
Philthered - 5-Jul-17 @ 1:11 AM
Inara - Your Question:
Hi, Just to clarify; I received a NIP today (29/06/17). The letter was dated 28/06/17, but the alleged offence took place on 02/06/17. The 14 day rule doesn't take weekends into account as non working days, right? Or can I contest this?Thanks :-)

Our Response:
If you are the registered keeper, yes you should have received it within 14 days of the offence. If you are not the reigstered keeper (e.g it is a lease car etc), or you have changed address/vehicle in the last few months or so, the police may have taken longer to find you.
NoPenaltyPoints - 30-Jun-17 @ 12:59 PM
Hi, Just to clarify; I received a NIP today (29/06/17). The letter was dated 28/06/17, but the alleged offence took place on 02/06/17. The 14 day rule doesn't take weekends into account as non working days, right? Or can I contest this? Thanks :-)
Inara - 29-Jun-17 @ 8:00 PM
Smiffy - Your Question:
My friends son who passed his driving test Feb 2016 got caught speeding 23 January 2017. The first he knew about it was 29 March 2017 when he received a letter to admit he was the legal driver. He returned it admitting he was. He received a letter on Saturday 25th June explaining his licence has been revoked and a £295 fine as he received 6 points. He was in a works company car.are there time limits that they had to inform him rather than the 8 weeks he waited?

Our Response:
No the 14 day rule does not apply if the driver is not the "registered keeper" of the vehicle.
NoPenaltyPoints - 29-Jun-17 @ 11:21 AM
My friends son who passed his driving test Feb 2016 got caught speeding 23 January 2017 . The first he knew about it was 29 March 2017 when he received a letter to admit he was the legal driver. He returned it admitting he was. He received a letter on Saturday 25th June explaining his licence has been revoked and a £295 fine as he received 6 points. He was in a works company car.are there time limits that they had to inform him rather than the 8 weeks he waited?
Smiffy - 27-Jun-17 @ 10:05 PM
Matty - Your Question:
I have just received to my amazement, a speeding ticket (39mph in a 30 ). Being a toodler driver, I was gobsmacked, to the point , I went to where the offence happened. Well coming off a roundabout , I saw the speed van , and remember thinking , strange place, as who could be speeding at a roundabout. Anyway as I pulled off the roundabout, about 500 yards in front I could see 40 mph sign. Inadvertently on the other side of the roundabout partly hidden by overgrown bushes is a 30 mph sign, which I presume carries over until I make the 40 mph sign.Anyway the offence happened on 01/06/2017 the letter sent to me is dated 16/06/2017. Have I got a case ty

Our Response:
If you were speeding before you got to the 40mph sign there's not much you can as the default speed in an urban environment is 30mph. You might be able to reject it under the 14day rule. See our guide for details of how to do this
NoPenaltyPoints - 20-Jun-17 @ 12:16 PM
Graham- Your Question:
Hi my partner got caught speeding on a static camera doing 36 in a 30 and 53 days later after offence she's received a NIP can she contest this Cheers Graham

Our Response:
This depends on the factors listed as "unusual"in the above article. If she's changed address, vehicle or is not the registered keeper (e.g. it's company/lease vehicle), then she will not be able to reject it. Our guide here shows what to do in the event of an incorrect time procedure
NoPenaltyPoints - 19-Jun-17 @ 11:37 AM
I have just received to my amazement, a speeding ticket (39mph in a 30 ) . Being a toodler driver, I was gobsmacked, to the point , I went to where the offence happened. Well coming off a roundabout , I saw the speed van , and remember thinking , strange place, as who could be speeding at a roundabout. Anyway as I pulled off the roundabout, about 500 yards in front I could see 40 mph sign. Inadvertently on the other side of the roundabout partly hidden by overgrown bushes is a 30 mph sign, which I presume carries over until I make the 40 mph sign. Anyway the offence happened on 01/06/2017 the letter sent to me is dated 16/06/2017 . Have I got a case ty
Matty - 18-Jun-17 @ 1:25 PM
Hi my partner got caught speeding on a static camera doing 36 in a 30 and 53 days later after offence she's received a NIP can she contest this Cheers Graham
Graham - 15-Jun-17 @ 11:14 AM
SW - Your Question:
I think I was caught speeding about 6 days ago so I'm expecting an NIP soon. Is the 14 day rule for 14 straight days or 14 working days?

Our Response:
It is 14 days from the date of the offence, so it's irrelevant how many of those days were working days.
NoPenaltyPoints - 6-Jun-17 @ 12:44 PM
I got pulled over by a police bike in April for speeding. I've not had anything through in the post how long have they got to issue me a prosecution notice?
Comk1tr - 5-Jun-17 @ 7:29 PM
I think I was caught speeding about 6 days ago so I'm expecting an NIP soon. Is the 14 day rule for 14 straight days or 14 working days?
SW - 3-Jun-17 @ 7:01 PM
Hi, I was pulled over by the police for speeding 2 weeks ago. They said I would receive something in the post within 14 days to tell me whether I was to receive points or a fine. It's now been 2 weeks and I haven't received anything? Should anything come through now, would I be able to contest?
SF - 24-May-17 @ 6:18 PM
If a NIPP arrives at the head office and is filled out in my absence but the date of the offence was according to the time stamp the 3rd week in March and arrived in the office the 8th of may does this constitute an out of time NIPP. The office staff completed the form in my absence clearly without seeing the date. Do I have the right to refuse the NIPP?
NH - 20-May-17 @ 12:24 PM
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