We offer emergency representation at police stations and can take your case all the way to the highest courts, through our own specialists and links with highly experienced barristers. We have representatives available on a 24-hour basis.
At the police station, we all have certain rights that must be explained to any detained person by the custody sergeant. One such right is the right to speak to an independent solicitor free of charge. To support this right, a Duty Solicitor Scheme exists to service every police station where individuals may be detained. We are members of the Duty Solicitor Scheme.
It is astonishing how often people in custody fail to speak to a Duty Solicitor. More often than not, it is because they believe that they can ‘handle it themselves’ and that they personally ‘don’t need a solicitor’. They ignore the fact that the Duty Solicitor is independent of the police and will be there to fight their corner as long as they are detained. More often than not the Duty Solicitor will be their only ally whilst they are within the system and under investigation.
A Duty Solicitor can keep things moving. Given that the police can initially hold a suspect for up to 24 hours without charge, and even for up to 36 hours in certain circumstances, it is vital to have a solicitor on your side, challenging and questioning your continued detention.
In this day and age, no one can afford to be without a driving licence in terms of safeguarding their employment. It is even more vital to the self-employed and their employees, who may lose their livelihood along with their driving licence.
At FM&C, we will talk you through the legal process and help you decide on the best course of action to assist you in having the best possible chance of keeping your licence.
Quick Guide to Motoring Penalties
The majority of Road Traffic related offences carry obligatory endorsement by way of penalty points. Examples include:
- speeding – 3 to 6 points
- driving without due care and attention – 3 to 9 points.
If you accumulate 12 points or more within a 3 year period you will be disqualified for a period of any length, at the Court’s discretion, but these periods must be at least:
- 6 months if no previous disqualification is to be taken into account
- 1 year if 1 previous disqualification is to be taken into account
- 2 years if there is more than 1 such disqualification
Should you become liable to disqualification under this procedure, we can help. We can explore with you the possible existence of grounds for lessening the normal consequences of conviction and if the Court finds such grounds, it may reduce the minimum period to which you are liable, or it may decide not to disqualify. In either event, a Court must state its reasons which will be recorded. However, the Court’s discretion is limited. It may not take into account:
- Any circumstances which are alleged to make the offence not a serious offence
- The fact that the disqualification would cause hardship (but it may take account of exceptional hardship e.g. The knock-on effect upon those dependent on you of keeping your licence, such as your employees if you are a small business employer)
- Any circumstances which have already been taken into account during the previous 3 years so as to avoid or reduce disqualification
- Certain offences will of course always carry compulsory disqualification, such as driving with excess alcohol, where the minimum period of disqualification is 12 months.