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DRINK DRIVING PROFESSIONAL CONSEQUENCES

Geoffrey Miller Solicitors are specialist drink driving solicitors. Call our team of expert driving offence solicitors for some free initial advice.

drink driving penalty 2017

Drink Driving Penalty

The motivation to instruct us to represent a client is often linked to preserving our client’s ability to drive but in the case of offences that are classed as criminal convictions, more pressing concerns often relate to the client’s ability to save their job. If you have concerns about the prosecution you face affecting your employment, we have addressed below some of the most common concerns for employees and drink driving professional consequences.

We have also outlined regulatory consequences for various professions as follows:

If you are regulated or you hold a specific licence that requires you to have a clean record, please note the specific consequences of a drink driving conviction as perceived by your regulators:

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General Employee Concerns

The police and the courts will not normally contact a defendant’s employer to advise them of a drink driving conviction. However, you could be in breach of your contract of employment if you fail to disclose the charge against you. Below we consider some of the most common questions and concerns clients have:

1. Do I need to inform a prospective employer of criminal convictions?

Prospective employees and the employer have certain rights and responsibilities when disclosing convictions.

Employees should be aware that:

  1. If an employer requests details of spent convictions, you need to consider whether or not the job you are applying for is exempt under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (see below);
  2. If an employer asks if you have a criminal record and your convictions are spent, and the job you are applying for is not excluded from the Act, you are legally entitled to say ‘no’.

This is a complex are of law and we recommend that if this is a concern for you, to seek advice, particularly if an employer claims a job is exempt under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 when in fact it is not. Advice can be sought from Citizens’ Advice Bureau or a careers adviser.

2. Relevant law for spent convictions

The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (c.53) allows some criminal convictions to be ignored after a rehabilitation period. This means that even if convicted of an offence, you will not have a lifelong “blot” on your record. The rehabilitation period is automatically determined by the sentence, and starts from the date of the conviction. After this period, if there have been no further convictions the conviction is “spent” and, with certain exceptions, need not be disclosed by the ex-offender in any context such as when applying for a job, obtaining insurance, or in civil proceedings.

3. When does a conviction become ‘spent?’

Certain criminal convictions are ‘spent’ (forgotten) after a rehabilitation period in accordance with Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. This period varies according to the offence. For people aged 18 or over when convicted:

  • convictions resulting in sentences such as fines, compensation and community service become spent after five years (Drink drive when not custody risk)
  • prison sentences up to six months become spent after seven years
  • prison sentences up to two and a half years become spent after ten years
  • prison sentences over 2.5 years are never spent

Most rehabilitation periods are halved if you were under 18 when convicted.

4. Does an employee need to declare a spent conviction?

Prospective employees are not obliged to disclose spent convictions when applying for most jobs. Pursuant to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 it is unlawful for an employer to discriminate on the grounds of a spent conviction. However, some types of jobs are exempt from this Act. This means that the prospective employee must disclose spent convictions in addition to unspent ones. These jobs include:

  • working with children and vulnerable adults, such as elderly and disabled people
  • senior roles in banking and the financial services industry
  • certain posts connected to law enforcement, including the judiciary and the police
  • work involving national security
  • certain posts in the prison service
  • certain professions in areas such as health, pharmacy and the law
  • private security work

5. Does an employee have to declare driving convictions?

Disqualifications From Driving

When a driver is disqualified from driving, the rehabilitation period Under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 will be the same length as the period of disqualification. It is important to note, however, that if more than one penalty is imposed at once, the rehabilitation period takes the length of the longer sentencing.

For example, a motorist who is prohibited from driving for seven years and is also hit with a fine, which will take five years to become spent, the offender faces a rehabilitation period of seven years, as it is the longer rehabilitation period of the two.

Driving Endorsements (Penalty Points)

Because an endorsement does not fall under the relevant part of the Act, not being a ‘disability, prohibition or other penalty’, it does not have any effect on rehabilitation periods for road traffic convictions. If a driver were to be fined for an offence and also have their licence endorsed, the rehabilitation period would be defined by the rehabilitation period for a fine, and the endorsement would not factor in at all.

6. Can an employer request additional information about a prospective employee?

Depending on the job, employers can request that successful applicants supply different types of disclosure:

  • Basic Disclosure — an employer can request this for any job (even jobs not exempt pursuant to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act). This includes only details of unspent convictions.
  • Standard Disclosure is for jobs with regular contact with children or vulnerable adults and jobs exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act. This includes all convictions, including spent ones.
  • Enhanced Disclosure is for jobs with greater (unsupervised) contact with children or vulnerable adults and for some judicial appointments and licensing purposes. This includes all convictions, including spent ones, plus possibly other information from local police records.

7. Rehabilitation of Offenders Act Outside UK

The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act does not extend beyond Britain. Spent convictions may have greater significance in other countries so you should not rely on the protection of this Act if you are seeking guidance about how you may be affected in other countries. If you need assistance, you are advised to contact appropriate agencies in those countries.

8. Consequences of Failing to disclose convictions

If an applicant/employee fails to properly disclose criminal record, they are likely to be invited to a meeting to discuss why they failed to fully disclose their criminal record.

If a current employee has unspent convictions and they did not disclose them intentionally when asked to, they can be dismissed by their employer, and possibly prosecuted.

When you think that it is not just your driving licence at stake but there is also a real risk of your livelihood being lost, why would you make any decision about what to do next without seeking expert advice from the top motoring law firm in the UK. We offer initial telephone advice without charge and have a number of price options to suit most budgets.

OUR DRINK DRIVING TESTIMONIALS

I cannot put into words how grateful I am for the help Geoffrey Miller have given me. I got caught 7 years ago and then caught again 7 years later, which could have resulted in a 3 year ban (possibly more) and a fine and possibly community service. I run... Read More

I cannot put into words how grateful I am for the help Geoffrey Miller have given me. I got caught 7 years ago and then caught again 7 years later, which could have resulted in a 3 year ban (possibly more) and a fine and possibly community service. I run my own business and this had the potential to ruin my business and everything I have. I did a search for specialist solicitors and Geoffrey Millar came up first. I was obvs in a state of distress, but I spoke to Jeanette and she instantly put me at ease by talking through the event of arrest and assuring me that they had confidence to help. Naturally you feel sceptical I think that’s natural, however after the first call they kept in contact and it helped in making the decision to use Geoffrey Miller. I’ll be honest the fees can make you feel its a big risk, but then the success rate is high, so I took the plunge. John Ruane was my case manager and he always kept me informed and told me not to worry. It did take nearly a year to get to a decision (no fault of Geoffrey Miller, that’s just how it worked out) but I kept my licence during this time, which meant I could continue with my life, and I was looked after by some great people on preliminary court hearings and they too, were great! Today I have just been acquitted and case dismissed. Worth every penny, and now they are helping to get some court fees back, which is great! If you Need help, and you feel lost/stressed give these guys a call! and check out the success rate, it worked for me.

Consider what it means to keep a licence and not pay high premiums on insurance after your ban is over, and you will see its worth the cash!

Thank you John, and All the team.

Jim
Drink Driving
Acquitted
West Sussex

The best team in the UK. Saskia saved me from losing everything. I can’t thank Geoffrey Miller more!

Manveer S Virk
Drink Driving
Case Dropped
Uxbridge

My case was handled by Saskia Abbot. I called several times, often requesting reassurance following emails which I had received. Saskia always called me back as quickly as she could. She was extremely helpful and very informative throughout. Her emails also provided detailed information about my case. She raised several... Read More

My case was handled by Saskia Abbot. I called several times, often requesting reassurance following emails which I had received. Saskia always called me back as quickly as she could. She was extremely helpful and very informative throughout. Her emails also provided detailed information about my case. She raised several issues which could potentially secure my acquittal, which made me more confident that I was right to go with a ‘not guilty’ plea.

Anonymous 50
Drink Driving
Case Discontinued
London

This case started 14 months ago when I received a call from a police station at 2.30 am telling me that my son had been charged with drink driving. He blew 54 by the road and 49 at the police station. I phoned Geoffrey Miller and spoke to Ellie Taylor.... Read More

This case started 14 months ago when I received a call from a police station at 2.30 am telling me that my son had been charged with drink driving. He blew 54 by the road and 49 at the police station. I phoned Geoffrey Miller and spoke to Ellie Taylor. She was extremely professional and well informed and told me that we could do what I thought was impossible and plead not guilty and have a good chance of a successful outcome. We decided to go down this route although the case appeared utterly unremarkable. There were no obvious problems with the prosecution case and we were just hoping that the prosecution would fail to serve their evidence. This unfortunately did not happen and they were very proactive and provided us with everything but a proper copy of the cctv. We only received this on the morning of the first hearing date. Our barrister, the magnificent Phillip Lucas, reviewed the cctv at court and immediately spotted two potential case winning points. The case eventually came back about 10 months later. At the trial our barrister performed a cross examination of the police witnesses worthy of a court room tv drama. After this the judge asked if Mr Lucas would mind if the witnesses were taken out of order as he wanted our expert to give evidence “with a view to dramatically shortening the length trial”. This is what happened and an acquittal shortly followed! A fantastic result. This case has shown me that you can never know if you have got a good case until all the evidence has been reviewed by the experts at Geoffrey Miller. Whilst it was both a stressful and expensive experience it was extremely worthwhile and worth every penny. Thank you to John Ruane, Victoria Brennan and Saskia Abbott.

Anonymous 49
Drink Driving
Acquitted
West Midlands

Not Guilty to drink driving case. Planned for the worst but GM attained the very best outcome. Very in depth from start to finish. Cannot thank enough.

Anonymous 48
Drink Driving, Careless Driving
Acquitted Drink Driving
Manchester

It is a year ago today that I was stopped for alleged drink driving, performed a roadside test and as a consequence breathalysed at the police station. But due to the breathalysing machine producing both a positive and a reading of “mouth alcohol”, a blood sample was requested, which I... Read More

It is a year ago today that I was stopped for alleged drink driving, performed a roadside test and as a consequence breathalysed at the police station. But due to the breathalysing machine producing both a positive and a reading of “mouth alcohol”, a blood sample was requested, which I gave. I was terrified during the whole procedure as my occupation depends on my driving and I have a company car. The circumstances prevailing this are complicated, but I want to summarise my experience with the legal engagement and my lengthy history with Geoffrey Miller Solicitors.

When I left the police station the following morning, I panicked;- I could lose my job, my marriage, my home and of course my dignity and reputation. I did not have a breath result but upon leaving I noticed on the custody board, my name and a reading of “blew 93” I knew this was more than twice the legal limit without awaiting the results of the blood alcohol sample.

In a haze, I googled “drink driving” firstly to determine the seriousness of the offence and secondly to educate myself on what my position was, I had no idea Solicitors existed that specialised in motoring offences regarding drink driving. I read through the first advertised website who were “drink drive” specialists, a family run business, great testimonials, video’s and exceptional statistics. I rang this company and spoke to one of the Directors, who explained all the different scenarios and in particular that the “CPS” are very dysfunctional, unorganised and often just drop cases. I’m sure this may be true but it wasn’t my experience.

I signed up immediately in a panic, I didn’t consider the overall costs and was told to deal with the initial case it would be £1,500. Deal done.

I then had time to research the offence in detail and came across Geoffrey Miller Solicitors, which to be honest sounded very much like my already contracted firm. I called and spoke to Eleanor Taylor, Solicitor, who basically ran through very similar scenarios as my contracted solicitor, however she was more professional in her approach, explaining procedural errors that could secure my acquittal for a blood sample and less damning about the CPS. This worried me, I had already paid a substantial amount, so I really had to trust my contracted solicitor.

I received my blood sample reading of 182mg, the legal limit is 80mg therefore the ban is 17 – 22 months. This was inconceivable to me, I was unable to tell anyone of my position which caused me enormous anxiety, sleepless nights and dreadful stress. I would lose my JOB, my HOUSE, my LIFE and my husband would never forgive me.

I attended the first hearing to plead not guilty and was annoyed that the Director I spoke to had delegated me to another solicitor without talking me through this process. The solicitor that attended court with me was nervous in his demeanour and did not fill me with confidence in his overall manner at all.

The case worker assigned was flippant with me, didn’t return calls and gave me the impression that I was just another case, nothing special. My trial was scheduled for end of March 2018 which required another £4000. A week before the trial after no defence strategy explained and very little communication, my calls weren’t returned and I wasn’t a priority. I rang Geoffrey Miller in a complete panic. My whole life was dependent on this trial and I had no confidence in this solicitor. Within an hour Jeanette Miller called me back. The conversation with her transformed my state of mind knowing I could win the case with one of the most experienced Barristers in the country. I hadn’t even been assigned a Barrister, never mind a competent solicitor.

Of course, I had to agree a new contract but Jeanette took into consideration my previous experience, but I had to re-assign for GMS resources to start from the beginning, so in effect I had to “write” off the amount I’d already paid to the previous Solicitor. There is only one option you must take and that is sign with Geoffrey Millers and do not make the mistake I made and waste money and your licence with any other company.

Now, for the rest of my journey, it was horrific and terrifying but Ellie (assigned to me) assured me and listened to all my constant queries over and over again. I had an out of office number and she always and I mean always responded to me. Jeanette talked to me and re-assured me about my case and arranged 2 conference calls with my appointed Barrister. This gave me so much confidence understanding the procedures but most importantly the defence strategies. They were all honest and straightforward with me from the start.

The end of March hearing turned into a case management hearing and then trial was adjourned to July. Again, this meant more costs but by now I understood by July how my case would be presented and during the trial, I was completely amazed at this Barrister’s complete focus on my case. He had only started cross examining the Police Officer when the case was adjourned as they do not give up on an argument. I had a forensic expert assigned as well as a Barrister. I then had 5 more months to wait for a 2 day trial, again more expense for me to gain an acquittal. This was an extremely difficult case, to prove a verdict of not guilty, to a Judge that was not familiar with the case law, which was part of the Skeleton argument and it seemed throughout he would convict whatever.

A half time submission was made by my defence Barrister and I thought the case would be won. No, the Judge said there was a case to answer and I honestly expected my Barrister to loose his focus, enthusiasm and not change tactics so late in the day. But no, he was AMAZINGLY brilliant and put the Judge into a position that proving me guilty was an impossibility for the Crown. I was found not guilty and I have my life back after this terrifying ordeal. Ellie is frankly a star and a credit to her profession. I was made to feel important and cared for as a client, I could not recommend them enough.

I still can’t believe I am free and I am ecstatic that I made the right decision with the right team and we were successful. If you have what I had to lose then you have to realise this is an expensive investment, at their results but I can honestly say that Ellie and Jeanette personally cared about the outcome for me.

Ms W
Drink Driving
Not Guilty
Merseyside

I cannot express how grateful I am to Geoffrey Miller, my solicitor John and his team have been exemplary. The sheer professionalism and experience they have, managed to get me acquitted from my alleged driving offence. My lawyer, I have no words but Fabulous! Knows his stuff and very meticulous.... Read More

I cannot express how grateful I am to Geoffrey Miller, my solicitor John and his team have been exemplary. The sheer professionalism and experience they have, managed to get me acquitted from my alleged driving offence. My lawyer, I have no words but Fabulous! Knows his stuff and very meticulous. One piece of advice… Do Not Go to Any Other Law firm. This ones the best.

H Singh
Drink Driving
Acquitted
East Midlands

I would highly recommend Geoffrey Miller Solicitors to defend your case if anyone is looking to keep their Driving Licence, yes its absolutely true if they say you are in a good position of keeping your licence they mean it…. The whole experience has been very daunting but the team... Read More

I would highly recommend Geoffrey Miller Solicitors to defend your case if anyone is looking to keep their Driving Licence, yes its absolutely true if they say you are in a good position of keeping your licence they mean it….

The whole experience has been very daunting but the team at Geoffrey Millers have been very supportive and reassuring that a positive outcome will happen, and yes it became a reality, I got to keep my Driving Licence… also a very valid lesson was learnt and that was not to ever drink and drive again.

Miss L Harris
Drink Driving
Acquitted
London

I was acquitted of drink driving and although I knew that medical reasons were responsible for that result, I was also worried about losing my licence. Geoffrey Miller solicitors put me at ease and guided me through the whole procedure and likely outcome without promising the world. I am grateful... Read More

I was acquitted of drink driving and although I knew that medical reasons were responsible for that result, I was also worried about losing my licence. Geoffrey Miller solicitors put me at ease and guided me through the whole procedure and likely outcome without promising the world. I am grateful for their professional realism through out. Many thanks Geoffrey Miller’s.

Mrs F
Drink Driving
Acquitted
Kent

When I was charged with driving with excess alcohol, after a blood test at the police station, I sat down and thought about the impact on my life the inevitable ban would have, not to mention a criminal record. I found Geoffrey Miller online and initially spoke to Tara, who... Read More

When I was charged with driving with excess alcohol, after a blood test at the police station, I sat down and thought about the impact on my life the inevitable ban would have, not to mention a criminal record. I found Geoffrey Miller online and initially spoke to Tara, who was knowledgeable, compassionate and entirely non-judgmental. Tara explained my options and let me get a much clearer picture of how to proceed against this charge. I was initially unsure but Tara was never pushy, only explaining the best possible outcomes alongside the worst. When I did the sums, and looked online at their success rates in these types of cases, it became an easy choice. Once instructed, Tara was always available and happy to talk, to answer my questions and allay any fears I had. I am happy to report that the case was dismissed and I was free to drive home. Tara and the team, through their hard work and diligence, won my case for me with the best possible outcome. I would like to thank all the Geoffrey Miller team, especially Tara, and would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone in a similar situation.

Mr M Gray
Drink Driving
Case Dropped
Newcastle Upon Tyne
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VIEW ALL OUR DRINK DRIVING TESTIMONIALS

†Figures include successful appeals and exclude cases lost that are the subject of appeal as at 20th December 2018.

Not Sure What to Do About Your Drink Driving Offence?

Most people who get in touch with our team of motor offence expert solicitors are uncertain of their options. They are unaware of any legal defences that may be available and find it difficult to believe that it might be possible to defend the drink driving offence charge they face by using loopholes that apply to the rich and famous! We do represent celebrities but we also represent many hardworking motorists like Brian and we want to help you make the right choice about what you do next.

We are always more than happy to chat things through with potential clients Free of Charge. Call us now on Freephone 0800 1389 123 to speak to one of our specialist motoring offence solicitors. It is only once you decide to instruct us that payment will become necessary and we can often arrange installment plans to assist you. Many satisfied clients have thanked us for offering this free consultation service as it has prevented them from following inaccurate non-expert advice which could have led to them accepting a driving ban unnecessarily.

If you would like to spend more time browsing on the site before you get in touch, make sure you have a look at our specialist motor offence guidance features such as our drink driving ban calculator which will help you to determine the penalty you may face if convicted and our money saving calculator which helps to outline some of the hidden costs of accepting a conviction.

We think we are simply the best in the business but if you are not satisfied in taking our word for it, our unique “ask our clients” testimonials scheme allows you to contact previous clients of the firm to seek a completely independent reference about us and what we might be able to do for you.

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