Blackfords LLP

Driving without insurance

All vehicles used on a road or any other public place must have valid insurance against third party risks. This also applies to vehicles which are parked on a road or public place but not driven.

The Magistrates’ Courts treat driving without insurance very seriously because of the potential consequences to others if you were to be involved in an accident whilst uninsured.

Driving without insurance is an offence of strict liability; not knowing that you are driving without insurance will not usually provide you with a defence unless for example you were driving a vehicle which belongs to your employer and you did not know that they had failed to arrange valid insurance.

What are the penalties for being found guilty of driving without insurance?

You may be disqualified from driving. If there is no disqualification, your driving licence will be endorsed with between 6 and 8 penalty points unless special reasons can be established. You will be liable to an unlimited fine.

What are Special Reasons?

A Special Reason is something that does not amount to a defence but is connected with the offence. It must be a mitigating circumstance and something which the court should properly take into account. Examples might include:

  • A discrepancy with your insurance company for example cancelling your insurance without notifying you
  • You can prove that you genuinely believed that you were fully insured at the time
  • If you were driving a vehicle belonging to someone else and can prove a genuine belief that you were doing so in reliance of their confirmation that you were entitled to do so on their insurance policy

What can we do for you?

If you believe that you had insurance, you will need a lawyer to advance your case before the Magistrates’ Court. If you did not have insurance using one of our lawyers to advance expert mitigation on your behalf will usually have a positive effect on minimising the number of penalty points to be imposed and the financial penalty that will be ordered. We can also advise on whether an exceptional hardship application could be advanced to persuade the court not to impose a disqualification where it normally would be mandatory for example, where you have reached 12 penalty points on your driving licence.

We can advise and assist you upon all such aspects.

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