Driving without insurance is a foolish thing to do, as it is considered to be one of the most serious traffic offences you can commit, and is as such punished harshly by the law. There are a number of different potential penalties which you could receive if you’re caught in the act, from having to pay a pretty hefty fine to spending some time behind bars, so it’s best not to do it at all.
If you do drive without insurance, however, and you’re caught doing so by the police, there are a few things you can do and say to try and get a more lenient punishment, or perhaps even avoid the conviction altogether.
Is This Your First Offence?
This isn’t a tip per se, but if you have not offended before then you have a higher chance at getting a less serious sentence. If you are lucky, you may simply receive a fixed penalty, which will be set at £200. This is getting off easy, so pay up and pay quick.
If it’s not your first time, you’re almost guaranteed to have to attend a court hearing. Because the crime is such a serious one, you would not be able to effectively argue your own case in court – hire a lawyer who specialises in driving offences.
Here are some possible defences which you could present in court.
You Weren’t Driving the Vehicle
This is a fairly common defence, perhaps because it can be tricky to prove or disprove. Basically, if your solicitor can prove that you did not actually manoeuvre the vehicle yourself (as in, you were in the driver’s seat but someone else was in charge of the steering), you can get away without charge.
You would need an experienced lawyer to pull this off – if your solicitor isn’t confident enough, the courts aren’t going to buy the defence.
You Weren’t Aware Your Insurance Had Been Cancelled
This is the best defence available to you, but only if it can be proven with little doubt. Basically, your lawyer will argue that you previously had insurance, but it had been cancelled without your knowing it.
This has been successful a number of times, usually when the driver is unaware that their partner had cancelled a joint insurance policy or similar circumstances. If it is proven, you should be able to get off scot-free.
The Insurance Company Failed to Notify You
You may be able to be saved from conviction if you are able to convince the court that your insurance policy did not inform you that your policy had been cancelled.
This would leave the blame squarely on the shoulders of your insurance company, meaning that you could not reasonably be charged with knowingly driving without insurance.
Another method in which you could claim ignorance is if you had paid for your policy renewal via credit or debit card, and either they failed to take it from your account or the payment didn’t go through for some other reason. The caveat is that you must not have realised; you would have known simply by checking your bank statement.
Driving Offence solicitors are specialists in all types of driving offence claims such as speeding, drink driving among other areas