Winner of the Legal 500 - 'Criminal, Fraud & Licensing Law Firm of the Year 2019'
Special Reasons - Defence Solicitors
Section 34(1) of the Road Traffic Offenders Act states:
“Where a person is convicted of an offence involving obligatory disqualification the court must order him to be disqualified for such period not less than twelve months as the court thinks fit unless the court for special reasons thinks fit to order him to be disqualified for a shorter period, or not to order him to be disqualified.”
A Special Reason is one which is special to the facts of a particular offence.
It is a mitigating or extenuating circumstance which is directly connected with the commission of the offence and which can be properly taken into account by the sentencing court.
It is not a defence and does not apply to specifics regarding the offender.
If a defendant can prove that he or she had an unusual circumstance leading to the offence being committed, the Court could be persuaded not to disqualify that person from driving.
Special Reasons can be applied to a number of offences:
- Insurance offences
- Alcohol related driving offences;
- Speeding offences
Examples of Special Reasons include:
- driving in emergencies or
- inadvertent consumption of drink or drugs.
Sentencing guidelines (‘the guidelines’) covering health and safety offences, corporate manslaughter and food safety and hygiene offences came into force on the 1st February 2016. On the 4th April 2019 the Sentencing Council published an impact assessment of the...
Kangs Solicitors has successfully assisted a client, who was a serving prisoner, achieve his desired deportation under the Early Removal Scheme (‘ERS’) back to his home country, being France, despite initial difficulties encountered with the Home Office. Cagin Husnu...
Whilst there are reasonably clear principles that apply when a court is sentencing anyone under the age of eighteen years, sentencing after a convicted individual has reached that age is not always so straight forward. Nazaqat Maqsoom of Kangs Solicitors comments on...
Worker Struck by Forklift Truck | Manufacturer Fined | Kangs Health and Safety Regulatory Solicitors
Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court imposed a fine upon a Cheshire based pallet manufacturer (‘the company’) which pleaded guilty to breaches of Health & Safety Regulations resulting in a worker suffering serious fractures to his leg and ankle....
Kangs Solicitors has been instructed to defend a client facing Confiscation Proceedings relating to the proceeds of a crime involving drugs. Steven Micklewright of Kangs Solicitors reports. The Circumstances | Kangs Confiscation Proceedings Solicitors The Crown...
The court will consider a range of questions such as:
- The reason for driving;
- The distance driven;
- The manner of driving;
- The condition of the vehicle driven;
- Whether or not it was the driver’s intention to drive any further;
- The road and traffic conditions at the relevant time; and
- The possibility of danger to other road users.
The defendant bears the burden of proving Special Reasons on the balance of probabilities.
There must be a genuine exceptional situation which cannot be solved by any other means.
For example, if someone else could have driven legally in the circumstances then the Special Reasons defence is likely to fail.
It is usual that the defendant will have to give evidence under oath which may lead to cross-examination by the Court and the prosecution.
How We Can Help with Special Reasons Applications
Kangs Solicitors can advise you whether there are any Special Reasons arguments to submit to the Court.
If we advise that Special Reasons should be submitted we can prepare you for giving evidence and represent you expertly during the hearing making submissions to the Court as necessary.
2 Wake Green Road, Moseley
Birmingham, B13 9EZ
0121 449 9888
9 Carmelite Street, City of London
London, EC4Y 0DR
020 7936 6396
Pall Mall Court 61-67 King Street
Manchester, M2 4PD