Mitigation for Drink Driving

Updated on Sunday 17th April 2022

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When charged with an offence related to drink driving, the accused can, in certain circumstances, reduce the severity of the sentence.
Mitigation for drink driving can be raised when the accused shows exemplary conduct, as well as when he or she meets other criteria.
The sentence is determined according to both aggravating and mitigating factors and, in some cases, when the defendant pleads guilty, he or she can use the personal mitigating circumstances to reduce the disqualification period.
Our driving offence solicitors are able to assess your case and determine when and how you should use mitigation for drink driving.
It should be noted that any circumstances presented for this purpose should be prepared with the help of a drink drive solicitor who has experience in mitigation for motoring offences.
Below, you can find out more about the factors that can reduce the sentence, as well as when to apply for mitigation.

Mitigating factors for motoring offences in the UK

Mitigation for drink driving is possible when the individual meets one or more of the following:
-      Number of convictions: the individual had no previous convictions or any relevant or recent convictions;
-      Emergency/medical: the person who was driving has a genuine emergency or has a serious medical condition or mental disorder/learning disability;
-      Unintentional: the sentence can be reduced when the driver had his or her drinks spiked;
-      Good character/caretaker: the sentence can also be reduced when the individual shows remorse, is of good character and when he or she is the sole or main provider for dependents (relatives).
Mitigation for drink driving is performed in accordance with the Magistrates Court Sentencing Guidelines.
Our drink driving solicitor in London can give you more information about these guidelines that also include aggravating factors.

When to apply for mitigation for drink driving

Mitigation can be raised when the individual pleaded guilty and the case is taken to court.
When working with us, a drink drive solicitor from our team, who represents you in court, will also present the mitigation.

This will be based on your particular circumstances, and character references can be used to support your case.

Penalties for drink driving in the UK

There are strict limits for drivers who choose to drink alcohol. The following apply in the UK (England, Wales, and Northern Ireland):
  • 35 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath; or
  • 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood; or
  • 108 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine.
If you are caught drink driving, the police can ask that you take a test. Penalties also apply if you refuse to provide a specimen for testing. When this is done without a reasonable excuse, you can be arrested.
The penalties for drink driving are the following:
  • unlimited fine and/or six months’ custody for driving or attempting to drive with excess alcohol;
  • the driver can also lose the licence for 12 months (at least);
  • when the offence was excess alcohol while in charge of the vehicle, the offender can also lose the license and receive 10 penalty points.
For the excess alcohol (in charge) offence, the maximum sentence includes a fine of up to £2,500 and/or three months’ custody.
Our team can give you more details about the penalty for drink driving, the penalty points and minimum, maximum sentences.
If you would like to know if you can be subject to a reduction of these penalties, you can discuss mitigation for drink driving with our team.
Contact our drink drive solicitor for more information and assistance.
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