Mumsnet has not checked the knowledge, experience or professional qualifications of anyone posting on Mumsnet Talk and cannot be held responsible for any advice given on the site. If you have any serious legal concerns, we would suggest you consult a lawyer.

Help please - I have a court summons - not sure how to handle this - plead guilty by letter or turn up?

(20 Posts)

I dont normally talk on the phone when I am driving.
But I was in the car, and the phone kept ringing, and it was distracting me. I picked up because I was worried that something had happened to somebody, heard it was a sales call so said sorry and hung up straight away.

Of course the police saw me. I was pulled over and given the "you dont have to say anything speech". He gave me a parking ticket, and I paid.

I have received a court summons. sad

Do they ban people from driving from one offense?
Is it better for me if I show, or should I just plead guilty by letter? What is the best or the worst outcome I can possibly hope for?

lougle Tue 21-May-13 19:31:11

Did you send your licence off to be endorsed? I'm confused, because if you were issued and accepted a Fixed Penalty Notice, you shouldn't also be summonsed to court.

No, I have not sent my license off. I have a foreign license. The police officer took my license details, and said I would possibly get 3 points on my license.

The penalty I paid was refunded a month ago.

Why was the penalty refunded?

I have no idea.

I googled. Apparently lots of people have had the same experience, penalty refunded and they are summoned to court instead.

I am very worried. I am anxious enough as it is, and verging on depression due to all the shit life throws at us, and now this.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Tue 21-May-13 19:48:05

I suspect it's because it's a foreign license. I'd very much doubt you'd get a ban for a first offence, but they can't endorse your license so you might get a bigger fine. Not sure about attending court or not, though.

I also have an old style license, not a credit card one.

Is there a court helpline number? Or what about your local police station - di you ahve to take your documents there? They might be able to explain.

No, I did not take my license to the police station, I had it on me, and the officer also took the details of my credit card for additional information.

I am shit scared, to be honest, I cant be without a driving license. I need the car for the school run!

SanityClause Tue 21-May-13 20:00:49

I got a summons for speeding (101 on a motorway), many years ago. I got a solicitor to speak for me in court. He was local to the court, and did it everyday.

I was given a biggish fine, and six points. I was not disqualified. He was well worth the money, I thought.

And FWIW, I am now far more careful about speeding.

apostropheuse Tue 21-May-13 22:20:48

You say you're driving on a foreign licence. I may be wrong here, but I thought you could only drive on a foreign licence for twelve months, after which you have to sit a UK test.

It might depend where your licence was issued though.

I checked, I am fine on that account.

WestieMamma Tue 21-May-13 22:59:29

EU licences are valid until they reach their expiry date.

Quint this is my line of work. No need to spend money on solicitor or go to court. Fill in the form making sure you say you are pleading guilty and want the case dealt with in your absence. In the part where you can have your say (mitigation) tell them you were offered a fixed penalty which you tried to pay but couldn't because you don't have a UK licence. Then make sure you fill in the form about your income. If you don't the magistrates have to assume you earn £400 a week.
You are unlikely to get a ban - just 3 points on your UK driving record.

droitwichmummy - Thank you so much! I have been in bits the last week, getting a tummy ache every time I have tried to complete the court forms.

Do I really need to list my expenses? Will it count against me if I dont?

Literally feel I am going to start hyperventilating....

You can get away without listing your expenses but make sure you declare your income - unless you are a high earner it will be for your benefit

Thank you. You have really put my mind at rest. Reading your message last night untied the knots in my stomach. smile

PolterGoose Wed 22-May-13 20:13:25

Dp had similar a few years ago for careless and inconsiderate driving blush and pleaded guilty by post. Very easy. Got a small fine. Please don't worry flowers

(And don't do it again)

I wont! I have learnt my lesson!

I'm glad I could help

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now