Jeff’s next step
Jeff rang Kent Traffic Law and, based on his initial, brief account was told that he probably would not succeed in an ‘exceptional hardship’ submission (which is necessary if one is to avoid a penalty points disqualification having had 12 or more points endorsed on one’s licence). It should be borne in mind that in an initial call clients are given ‘provisional guidance’ rather than formal legal advice (as this can only be given once detailed instructions have been taken). Jeff did not want to give up his licence without at least checking whether anything could be done and so he booked a formal consultation.
Jeff had been advised to take certain steps in advance of his court date in order to make his mitigation stronger. On his behalf it was conceded at the outset that loss of licence, even for 6 months, would not cause ‘exceptional hardship’. Instead, a submission was made that an immediate, relatively short ban rather than the endorsement of points should be ordered. Unusually, this was accepted by the court. Jeff was thrilled as his ban was only 21 days long! This meant that he could keep his job. He said,
‘I have had the stress of this day hanging over me for 8 months. I could not have hoped for a better result. Without your case preparation and experience I could not have obtained such a lenient outcome.’
Jeff had been very fortunate that the court agreed not to endorse points but simply to impose an immediate ban which meant that the current penalty points remained on his licence but that the 6 month minimum tariff ban did not apply. The reader should be aware that, although the defence sought this outcome, that the odds of achieving it were relatively low as the courts usually order the endorsement of points in such a situation meaning that a 6 month tariff ban can usually only be avoided if ‘exceptional hardship’ is made out.
So, if you fear the endorsement of points and a 6 months penalty points disqualification because your case for submitting ‘exceptional hardship’ is weak, this does not necessarily mean there is no hope of ‘winning’ your case. It might still be possible to persuade the court to impose a much shorter ban instead. If you would like to speak to us, without obligation, to make a provisional assessment of your prospects don’t hesitate to call.