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fruitandveg

Special Reasons Court Hearing - No Insurance

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fruitandveg

Hi all,

 

I've got to go to court next week in relation to someone I reported for driving without insurance. He's pleaded guilty but is claiming special reasons why he shouldn't be given the relevant penalty points (he's subject to New Drivers Act 1995) - I've been called as a prosecution witness, does anyone know what sort of stuff I'll be asked?

 

Thanks very much,

 

F&V

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depot

It depends on the special reasons. Typically its how far (distance) did you observe the driver driving. How long did you observe them for. What the driver said when stopped.

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BlueBob

The specials reasons are usually to do with why the person shouldn't get the penalty and not the offence itself - so special reason not to be disq due to family hardship. 

How or why they drove isn;t usually a special reason as they have pleased guilty to the offence.  Seems a little unusual that the officer is being called as the case has been resolved by the plea.

Is the OP sure they are being called to give evidence rather than being their to asnwer any questions or to hold CPS hand?

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depot

I've been to court a couple of times for special reasons and what you are talking about Bob is part of the special reasons but mainly that stuff, hardship and the like is for the solicitor to go over in mitigation. The last I went to was an opl. Pleaded guilty but was claiming special reasons such as shortness of distance travelled and driving due to an emergency, hence the need for witnesses.

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LankyDan

Sounds like a Newton Hearing.

I'd never heard of one of these until I recieved an e-mail telling me one of my DV jobs had gone to one.

In my case the offender admitted the assault but disputed part of the account.

In your instance I can only think he's admitted the offence, but there are some other circs he is disputing. For instance the insurance company have cancelled his policy and he was unaware? Or something similar.

Newton Hearing or not your prosecution team will most likely have more information, fling them an e-mail.

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BlueBob

I'd never heard of one of these until I recieved an e-mail telling me one of my DV jobs had gone to one.

In my case the offender admitted the assault but disputed part of the account.

In your instance I can only think he's admitted the offence, but there are some other circs he is disputing. For instance the insurance company have cancelled his policy and he was unaware? Or something similar.

Newton Hearing or not your prosecution team will most likely have more information, fling them an e-mail.

A Newton hearing is where the person accepts they may have done something wrong but not to the extent and seriousness shown in the prosecution.  One of the more common Newton Trials is excess speed, where the driver agrees they may have been exceeding the speed limit but not as fast as alleged by the officer/s which in turn may result in a wider range of penalty options - so driver says they 'possibly' doing just over 60mph (derestricted single carriageway) but not as fast as alleged by the police, which could be the differenece between possibly no penatly (if |defendant's accoutn accepted) or disqualification (if Pros case accepted). The trial focuses on that aspect so the court can make an informed decision.

In the OP case, whether the Ins Co cancelled his cover or not would not be something the officer could directly evidence - the Ins Co rather than the office being the ones to provide any statement etc that may form part of the case.

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Steve

I had one of these for a Drink Drive case - it lasted all day and I was in the box for about an hour. The Magistrates got very tired of his brief trying to trip me up on technicalities - I cannot quite remember the outcome - but the basically threw his reasons out and the book at him.

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Burnsy2023

Sounds like a Newton Hearing.

 

Indeed, I've got one for a PWITS job from May 2012 in a couple of weeks.  

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fruitandveg

Yeah witness unit, traffic process unit and CPS all just said "it's a special reasons hearing"...I mean I'm aware it's not contesting the offence, it purely boils down to why he shouldn't get the penalty, he does say he didn't know he wasn't insured but I fail to see what I can add to it! Still, I'll see how it pa so put but I'm not keen on this whole all day at court!

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Lone Wolf

Yeah witness unit, traffic process unit and CPS all just said "it's a special reasons hearing"...I mean I'm aware it's not contesting the offence, it purely boils down to why he shouldn't get the penalty, he does say he didn't know he wasn't insured but I fail to see what I can add to it! Still, I'll see how it pa so put but I'm not keen on this whole all day at court!

 

I'd press the CPS/WCU as to exactly why you are needed, it might be that you can argue the case and be stood down.  If you are getting paid overtime for the waste of a day it might be worth mentioning it your Sgt/Inspector and getting them on the case too.

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fruitandveg

I'd press the CPS/WCU as to exactly why you are needed, it might be that you can argue the case and be stood down.  If you are getting paid overtime for the waste of a day it might be worth mentioning it your Sgt/Inspector and getting them on the case too.

 

And 2 days before, just like that, I've been dewarned!

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depot

Shock !!!

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