Using your phone while driving is treated seriously by the law and can result in serious penalties and punishment. Even the most experienced, alert and careful drivers are prone to distraction by a phone call or text, but a small lapse in concentration can cause accidents resulting in serious injuries and fatalities. Data from the DVLA published in 2016 shows that drivers from Scotland are the worst offenders for using their mobile phones whilst driving.
The law requires drivers to be in proper control of their vehicles at all times and they may be guilty of an offence if their attention is diverted because of the use of various electronic devices, including mobile phones, tablets and certain digital cameras. New legislation which came into force on 1 March 2017 has doubled the consequences for mobile phone use while driving. Under the new legislation, if a driver is stopped by the police for using a mobile, they will be issued with six points on their driving licence and a £200 fine – previously it was three points and £100 fine. The tougher sanctions could result in new drivers losing their licence as motorists who have six points on their licence within two years of passing their test are disqualified from driving. Whether a new or experienced driver, these penalties can have a serious impact on individuals who rely on their cars and other vehicles for their jobs and businesses on a daily basis.
At Keith J Tuck, we remain up to date with the changing laws and policies in this area of law and use this knowledge to provide a professional defence service to motorists who find themselves facing punishment. We understand what is at stake and take a proactive approach to help drivers stay on the roads.
Uses that can cause penalty points or prosecution
Here are some examples of illegal actions behind the wheel and advice on how to avoid them:
Changing music on your mobile phone.
Set up your playlist before you set off.
Using a mobile phone as a Sat Nav.
Your route should be programmed before you start your journey and your phone should be fixed in the vehicle where you can see the route easily and without taking your eyes off the road. If you do need to change the route then stop somewhere safe and reprogramme the route.
Declining a phone call.
It might be safe to decline the phone call if you are able to use the button on your steering wheel.
Taking a call or reading a text message.
Find somewhere safe to pull over if you need to respond.
Use of mobile phones while driving – Road Traffic Offence Solicitors Glasgow, Scotland
The six penalty points and the fine of £200 are fixed. You will have to attend the fines office at your local sheriff court to have the penalty points recorded on your licence and pay the fine.
If you do not agree with the police officers in relation to your mobile phone use while driving, you should get in touch with motoring offence lawyers to seek advice on the best course of action. The solicitors at Keith J Tuck have an enviable record in defending clients facing minor and serious motoring offences. If you disagree with the police, the matter may be contested in court. If you decide to challenge the matter in court, the police will refer the case to the Procurator Fiscal, who will write to you within a few months giving you the court date. We can provide professional advice and representation if the matter involves formal court proceedings. Do not hesitate to get in touch for guidance if you receive a letter from the Procurator Fiscal.
If you are involved in a collision while using a phone and that results in serious injury or death, you could be prosecuted for driving without due care and attention. This would carry far more serious penalties and you could be prosecuted for causing death by dangerous driving.
What will happen if I have already got six or more points on my licence?
If you already have six or more points, action will be taken to take the matter to court. If you are found guilty you will be given six penalty points and a fine of up to £1,000. If you are driving a vehicle which carries goods or passengers, in that case, the fine can go up to £2,500.
In serious cases, you can be disqualified from driving. To minimise the consequences of motoring offences allegations, you can rely on us for competent support and advice.
What happens in court?
Usually, there will be two police officers to give evidence against you. We can assist you by examining the circumstances in detail, identifying which defences may be available and representing you in court.
Contact Our Specialist Motoring Offence Lawyers in Glasgow, Scotland
Even if you already have six or more points, you do not need to lose hope. Our road traffic specialists have years of experience and could help you save and retain your driving licence. We have dealt with many similar cases in the past and we know what it takes to assist those who find themselves stuck in these difficult situations.
Our criminal defence solicitors operate in Glasgow and the surrounding areas. Give us a call today on 01413362020, or contact us via our online contact form.