- Business transport offences
- Careless driving
- Dangerous driving
- Drink driving/excess alcohol
- Drunk in charge
- Exceptional hardship
- Mobile phone use
- Notices of intended prosecution
- Penalty points/totting up
- Remove disqualification
- Special reasons
- Speed cameras and furnishing information
- Traffic light offences
Totting Up - Exceptional Hardship
Where a person accumulates 12 or more penalty points, disqualification is mandatory under the totting-up provisions unless the Court finds that such disqualification will cause exceptional hardship.
The Magistrates have guidelines, but the correct presentation of the relevant mitigating factors may persuade them to exercise their discretion and impose a lesser sentence than they might have done otherwise. This could relate to any aspect of sentencing including the length of the disqualification.
Almost every order of disqualification entails hardship for the person disqualified. It is for the Court to decide whether such hardship is “exceptional”.
The hardship need not be restricted to that caused by the offender and hardship caused to somebody who is wholly innocent is something the Court make properly take into account.
There is no hard and fast rule as to what “exceptional hardship” amounts to and each Court must make its own judgement of fact.
Our experience of these cases will enable us to advise you as to what view the Court will take.
We can also advise you in relation to the circumstances in which a Court might hear a second application not to disqualify on the grounds of exceptional hardship.
Exceptional hardship is not the same as special reasons. ‘Special Reasons’ is a reason not to disqualify at all because of some factor relating to the commission of the offence. Hardship issues relate to the consequences of the imposition of a particular sentence.
The question of exceptional hardship is relevant to those cases where a driver faces the prospect of disqualification as a result of having accumulated twelve or more penalty points.
Persuading a Court not to disqualify requires careful preparation and skilled advocacy.