Mr Atkins faced an allegation of failing to stop and failing to report an accident, which carries a penalty of between 5 – 10 points and a fine. The Magistrates also have the discretion to impose a period of disqualification for the offence alone. Mr Atkins decided to plead guilty and appeared before the Magistrates at Newbury Magistrates’ Court. At the time, Mr Atkins had 6 points on his licence. Had he received a further 6 points or more, he would have been facing the possibility of a 6 month disqualification from driving under the ‘totting up’ provisions. Mr Atkins intended to plead exceptional hardship in an attempt to persuade the Magistrates to exercise their discretion and allow him to continue to drive as he is a self employed company director and his driving licence is crucial to the day to day running of his business. The loss of his licence would have had a devastating effect on his business partner and his employees.
We were instructed to enter mitigation on behalf of Mr Atkins in an attempt to keep the penalty to an absolute minimum. The Court ordered that Mr Atkins should pay prosecution costs of £35.00, a fine of £190.00 and 5 points be endorsed on his Driving Licence. This left Mr Atkins with 11 points endorsed on his driving licence.