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Archive for the ‘Early Return of Driving Licence’ Category

Early Return of Licence Specialist Lawyers

Helen Newman of Forrest Williams

 

Can I Apply For An Early Return of Licence?

 

Have you been disqualified from driving for more than 3 years?

 

Have you served almost half of your sentence (or a minimum of two years)?

 

If you have said yes to both of these questions then you could be eligible to make an application to the courts to allow you to reapply for your licence before the disqualification period has finished.  This early return of licence is in addition to any credit applied for successfully completing any court offered courses (such as the Drink Drive Rehabilitation Course). So for example if you were disqualified for 4 years in May of 2012 you could now make the application as you will have served half of it by the time of the hearing, so could gain up to 12 months further reprieve (48 months – 24 months already served + 12 months credit for the course = 12 months gained!)

 

At Forrest Williams we know that people rely on their cars and that being without the means to drive can have a significant impact on the quality of your life and those around you. We know that your life now may not be as it was when you were disqualified. We are experienced in supporting client through the application process, both in preparation and at court, to persuade the courts to grant the early return of licence.

 

The application itself is not difficult – you simply need the courts to agree to list the matter. What is hard though is persuading the courts that your licence should be returned early. In effect you are asking the courts to amend its earlier sentence – one which they will have considered as appropriate when passing initially. This will require you to attend court and give evidence in person as to why the courts should amend their earlier decision.

 

The courts will consider:

 

  • The circumstances of the original offence which led to the disqualification
  • Your conduct since
  • Why you are making the application now.

 

At Forrest Williams we work with you to show the courts not just that you want your licence back but why you need it. We work very closely with you preparing documentary evidence to provide to the courts to support the assertion that not only do you need your licence back, but that should they agree to the application, that they are satisfied that you will not be back before them for a similar offence.

 

We recently helped a gentleman in Stoke Magistrates Court regain his licence a full 18 months earlier than he should have done. His mother’s health had taken a turn for the worse and he wanted to be able to spend more time with her, time he wasn’t able to by making use of public transport due to the distance between them. Without his licence he could only get to see her at the weekend, with it back he would be able to pop over most nights. We worked closely with her carers to provide the court with references to support the benefit having her son around would have on her. We worked with him to help the courts see that he did not pose a risk of reoffending, we provided them with medical evidence to support that his body showed no effects of ongoing alcohol or substance abuse. The courts granted the application and our client was delighted!

 

At Forrest Williams we know that every case is unique and because of that we do not have a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to cases. If you are considering making an application for early return of licence then give us a call on 01623 600645. We will listen to you, hear your story and advise you as to the strength of any application.

 

 

 

 

 

Early Return of Driving Licence

Julia Coffin

 

EARLY RETURN OF DRIVING LICENCE 

 

We get a lot of calls about the early return of driving licences following disqualification for driving offences.

 

If you have been disqualified for 3 or more years then you can apply to the court for your driving licence to be returned to you before the end of the disqualification period, after 2 years or half the ban period has elapsed. So for example, if you were disqualified for 2 years you would not be able to apply to have it returned early, for a 3 or 4 year ban you could apply after 2 years, a 5 year ban would be after 2.5 years and so on. 

 

There seems to be a common misconception that it is an automatic right to have your licence returned early.  This is absolutely not the case, it is an in-depth application made to the court and you are effectively asking them to go against an earlier decision to disqualify you for a set period, so you have to have very compelling reasons to ask them to consider this. It is far from a tick box exercise and certainly not all applications are granted. 

 

The Police are informed about an intention to make such an application and do have the right to attend court and object to this. 

 

The Court will want to hear very specific reasons why you would like your driving licence back – simply saying “I just want to be able to drive again” or “I don’t like having to get the bus to work” just aren’t good enough and would not make a strong application. 

 

Recently we had a client make an application on the grounds that he had been offered an expansion of his role to include driving duties for the firm he was working for, which clearly meant he needed to have his licence to accept the role. If he couldn’t drive the boss would have no alternative but to employ a driver meaning he would lose his job. His other main reason was that his elderly mother was in a care home with a degenerative and terminal illness and he would be able to see her much more regularly, and at short notice should something happen to her during the night. 

 

They were the strong points of his application. 

 

The weaknesses in his application were that he had been disqualified from driving three times previously, all within the past ten years. Twice for drink driving and once for driving whilst disqualified during his most recent disqualification, a very serious offence for which he very nearly went to prison. 

 

Our client had had plenty of time to reflect on his past decisions and the consequences on him and other people. Since his most recent offence he had settled down in a stable relationship and become much more settled within himself. He had changed his drinking habits and stopped drinking at home completely.

 

His remorse was clear to see, and the changes he had made to his lifestyle had made a huge impact on his life. However, there was still the hurdle of his past offending to overcome. 

 

Our Barrister was able to present a full picture of this client’s circumstances to the Court, and they found some sympathy with him.  His driving disqualification was lifted and we had a very relieved, grateful and happy client.

 

If you would like to make an application for Early Return of Driving Licence, call our expert team now on 01623 600645.

 

Early Return of Driving Licence For Delighted Client

Tracy Johnson, Paralegal at Forrest Williams Solicitors

Tracy Johnson, Paralegal at Forrest Williams Solicitors

There was elation in Nottingham Magistrates’ Court this week following Errol Jackson’s successful application for early return of driving licence.

 

Errol, who was very concerned that his application would be refused, had asked Forrest Williams to take on his case as he was well aware that his application would not be straight forward.

 

He had been disqualified for drink driving offences twice in the last 10 years, and had in the previous few months been involved in an altercation outside a nightclub which had resulted in a charge of being drunk and disorderly and being ‘tagged’ for a period of 6 weeks. Unfortunately there was also a previous drunk and disorderly offence within the last few years.

 

However, as staff at Forrest Williams are well aware, behind every incident is a real-life back story. It is very easy to respond with a knee-jerk reaction, but we take time to listen carefully and not judge. Only in this way can we get to the heart of the matter, assess the situation and then agree on the best way forward.

 

In Errol’s case, he readily admitted that he had, when younger, fallen in with a ‘bad’ crowd and, through peer pressure, had done things he later regretted. At this time, he explained to his case worker, he was estranged from his parents and isolated from the people who could have been positive role models in his life. He felt, quite literally, adrift from the rest of society, so did not care about his actions, or their consequences. In this frame of mind, with nothing to lose, he established a reputation as a ‘trouble-maker’, which, in turn, encouraged him to behave in a more anti-social manner.

 

Errol told his case worker that when he became a little older, and found a girlfriend of good character, he lost the urge to lash out against the world and decided he wanted to settle down and enjoy family life.

 

His long disqualification from driving was now seriously impacting on his ability to perform his duties as an Electrician, a job for which he himself had paid all the fees for training and exams. Knowing that he was at risk of dismissal from his job, as colleagues were becoming tired of acting as his driver, Errol approached Forrest Williams and asked if we could fully prepare his application for the early return of his driving licence, and represent him in court.

 

The preparation for his case was detailed and thorough, with Errol’s case worker guiding him through each stage of the preparation and giving him feedback that he said he found very helpful. We were well aware that this application had to be very strong, given the fact that they are never easy to be successful with at the best of times.

 

Forrest Williams are, however, delighted to report that Errol’s application was successful and that he will soon be able to drive again, thereby keeping his job and moving on within his company. There is even the offer now of a company van, so he can be fully mobile and respond to electrical call-outs as part of an out-of-hours service.

 

Errol thanked everyone involved in the preparation and presentation of his case, particularly his case worker and barrister. He can now, he said, move forward with his life.

 

If you’d like to give yourself the best chance of success for a motoring case, call our expert team now on 01623 600645 for a free initial 30 minute consultation.

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