Timely legal advice and representation is essential if you have been charged with a drink driving offence. Oratto works to ensure that those in this situation can be both properly informed and connected with a motoring defence lawyer suitable to their situation.
Whether you have been charged with drink driving, failing to provide a specimen, driving while unfit or some other related charge, our member motoring defence lawyers are committed to upholding Oratto's standards and will do their utmost to defend you against the allegation.
Procedural and factual defences
Procedural errors can severely hamper any efforts to prosecute a person for driving under the influence of alcohol. In fact, in many cases evidence of procedural errors can lead to a not guilty verdict; in others the case may be dropped before even reaching the court – typically such procedural failures relate to the taking of blood, breath or urine samples.
For example, for a specimen to be relied upon, police must tell you that failure to provide a specimen is an offence – if you can prove that they failed to do this, the case will be dropped. Another example of procedural error relates to the continuity of a specimen; in order to prove its case the prosecution must prove that the sample being used as evidence is the same sample that was given at the police station. If they cannot prove continuity the case may be dropped.
Examples of factual errors include instances where the defendant was not in fact the driver or the "hip flask" defence, which is where although the driver was over the legal blood alcohol limit at the time of giving the sample, he or she was not so at the time of being stopped by the police.
Although arguing "special reasons" is not a defence, it can help a defendant avoid disqualification. A defendant might reasonably argue special reasons in the following situations:
- They have reasonable grounds to believe their drink was spiked
- They were driving under duress
- They were driving only a very short distance
Drink driving penalties
Penalties for drink driving range from a 12 month disqualification and a fine in the case of a first offence to community orders or custodial sentences for more serious offences. Second offences are penalised with a minimum three-year disqualification while repeated offences can attract much more serious penalties.
Rehabilitation courses are another option and successful completion of one of these can reduce the length of disqualification.
Oratto drink driving defence solicitors
Oratto empowers you to make informed choices about your legal representation. Use our website to search for a drink driving defence solicitor by location or area of specialism today.