Speeding tickets - how much you have to pay | RAC drive (2023)

Hundreds of thousands of people are fined for speeding each year - but how much is a speeding fine and can the penalty be more severe?

Our guide describes the different penalties for different speeding violations and also discusses ways you can appeal your fine.

Speeding fines - what is the penalty?

The majority of speeders are classified as a "minor offense" and still receive a penaltyPenalties fixed(FPN) a fine of £100 and three points on her licence.

However, you can avoid the points and opt for aSpeed ​​Awareness Courseif you are offered it. Whether you are eligible for an awareness course depends on which police station is handling your crime.

SeaNational Offender Retraining Program, the organization that administers speed awareness courses in the UK (excluding Scotland), you will only be offered the course if: "You have not been convicted of any other speeding offense in the past three years".

In some cases, howeverthe punishment can be harsherand you could be prosecuted in court, resulting in a significantly larger fine, more points on your driver's license, or even a suspension or disqualification from driving.

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Whether you are a prosecutor or have just received a speeding fine is at the discretion of the police officer.

The police will usually only decide to prosecute if you are considered a "felon" and have either significantly exceeded the speed limit or committed it repeatedly.

However, the fact remains that it is illegal to drive at 50 km/h in a 30 mph zone.

While it's unlikely you'd ever be fined for it - and even if you did, you'd most likely be offered an FPN - it's still technically possible to be prosecuted and tried in court for this offense, wherever you are face the fines described in the table below.

You will also be sentenced in court if you are given a speeding penalty and you ignore it or if you challenge the charge.

If you are then found guilty in court, your sentence will be based on these guidelines:

What is the penalty for speeding?

Legal speed limit (mph)Recorded speed (mph)Recorded speed (mph)Recorded speed (mph)
Band AB and BBand C
2021-3031-4041 and up
3031-4041-5051 and up
4041-5556-6566 and above
5051-6566-7576 and up
6061-8081-9091 and above
7071-9091-100101 and above
Points / Disqualification3 pointsDisqualify 7-28 days OR 4-6 pointsDisqualify 7-56 days OR 6 points
fine50% of the relevant weekly income*100% of the relevant weekly income*150% of the relevant weekly income*

* That's what you can expect, but the judge can fine you up to 25% either side of that number, meaning serious offenders could face a fine of 175% of their weekly earnings.

However, this fine is capped at £1,000, increasing to £2,500 if caught on a motorway.

Speeding fines are calculated as a percentage of weekly earnings after tax and National Security deductions.

For lower-income offenders or those on government assistance (e.g. Universal Credit) theJudgment Councilthe calculation of the speeding fine is based on "an amount deemed to be the perpetrator's relevant weekly income", currently this is calculated as a weekly income of £120.

For unemployed offenders, the accelerated fine calculation depends on a number of factors, including current financial circumstances, level of expenses, earning potential and savings.

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Am I allowed to have a 10% deviation from the speed limit?

Before the law, you face a fine as soon as you exceed the limit. So if you drive 50 km/h in a 30 limit or 71 km/h on the Autobahn, you are breaking the law.

The National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) guidance recommends a so-called "10% plus 2" margin for drivers to help police officers apply "discretion", but it is well remembered that this is a recommendation only , not the law.

Most speed cameras need to be manually set to trigger at a speed, however it is unconfirmed if they are actually set 10% over the limit. Not worth playing and assuming they will give you 10% - never exceed the speed limit.

If you are caught by a mobile camera speeding, it is at the discretion of the police officer to penalize you if you exceed the speed limit in any way as stated above - 1 mile per hour over it is still against the law.

The best advice is not to drive at full speed

Caught speeding, what happens next?

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This really depends on the severity of the speeding offense you've committed. The following sections describe what happens when you commit either a minor or a serious crime.

Minor speeding violations

If you think you've been flashed by a speed camera, you have to wait 14 days for this to be confirmed or not: that's how long the police have to issue a "Notice of Intended Prosecution" (NIP).

It will be sent to the vehicle's authorized owner - to be observed if you are driving a company car.

In the case of minor speed violations andif you are eligible, the police can offer the opportunity to take a speed awareness course instead of issuing fines and penalty points. You have to pay for this - and it usually takes half a day - but it helps keep your driver's license clean.

Whether you are eligible for an awareness course depends on which police station is handling your crime.

Serious speeding violations

For more serious speeding offences, speed awareness courses are rarely offeredNational Offender Retraining Program, "Most police forces offer a course for drivers who are caught speeding between 10% plus 2 and 10% plus 9 of the legal speed limit."

Beyond this limit there is usually a minimum fine of £100 and three or six penalty points on your driving licence.

Police give 28 days to name the driver and pay the fine; Points are then credited against the driver's license.

If you don't respond within 28 days, the matter may go to court.

Very serious speeding offenses are referred to court anyway, where the fine can be as much as £1000 - or £2500 if caught on a motorway.

If you collect more than 12 points in a period of three years, you risk having your driving license revoked; after four years you can apply for a point deduction.

revocation of driving licence

If you are caught speeding and taken to court, you could face an immediate driving ban.

Generally, judges only consider a driving ban if you've been caught driving a significant amount over the speed limit.

So according to the Band C fines in the table above, if you are driving at 30 km/h you must drive more than 81 km/h, at 40 km/h 66 km/h, at 50 km/h 75 km/h, at 60 km/h 85 km/h and at 70 km/h 100 km/h.

Suspensions generally range from 7 to 56 days, depending on the severity of the offence.

In extreme cases they can last up to 120 days and you will need to reapply for your license once the ban is lifted.

You may need to retake your driving test or even take an advanced driving test.

In the case of driving bans, the court has discretionary powers.

They take into account factors such as the road conditions when you were caught speeding.

And you might also show some leniency if you've been speeding for an emergency, or losing your driver's license could cost you your job.

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How to Pay a Speeding Penalty

Once you plead guilty, paying your speeding fine depends on where it happened.

  • In England and Wales you cangood online here
  • There are four payment options in Scotlandoutlined here
  • In Northern Ireland you must contact the Laganside Courts Complex directlyhere

How to dispute a speeding penalty

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Speeding penalties are in place to protect all road users and contesting them is a task that should not be attempted if you believe you have exceeded the limit. Always obey the traffic rules and never exceed the speed limit.

However, if you believe that you have been wrongly issued with a ticket, you may appeal by completing the appropriate section of the Notice of Intended Prosecution within 28 days.

However, think carefully beforehand if you have any grounds for appeal, because if the police do not uphold your appeal, you will have to go to court to challenge the conviction.

In this case, it is best to get legal advice, but you should also reckon with the fact that – if things do not go your way – you will ultimately have to expect a significantly higher fine than in the first instance.

Allowable Disputes

Some successful speeding fine appeals are based on technical grounds, such as: B. missing or incorrect information in the NIP or incorrect, missing or covered traffic signs.

You can also appeal if you weren't the one driving or you think you weren't speeding and you can prove it.

If the traffic signs were unclear, you must prove this with a photo.

If you're sure you weren't speeding, the only way to prove your innocence is in court.

There you can demand that the corresponding calibration certificate for the speed camera that captured you be presented in court.

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Invalid Dispute

Prosecutors have heard every excuse under the sun for speeding.

Excuses that won't do are that you are unaware of the speed limit, that the roads were quiet since it was late at night, or that you are in a hurry and say it's an emergency.

However, if you accept that you were caught speeding, some of these "excuses" could be used as mitigating factors, which could result in a lighter sentence if you plead guilty in court.

How to send a damage mitigation letter

If you decide to contest a speeding fine, the case will be heard in the District Court.

Although you should consider attending in person (they might be more understanding if you show your remorse and present extenuating factors), you can also put your case forward in writing.

Apologize - admit you made a mistake, but give reasons why.

If you are at risk of losing your driver's license (e.g. if you already have points on your driver's license), explain the consequences if this should happen (e.g. losing your job).

Frequently asked questions about speed penalties

  • How long does the police have to issue a ticket?

    If you're caught speeding by a fixed speed camera, you'll receive a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) and a Section 172 notice within 14 days.

    If you are stopped by the police, they can issue you with a verbal warning or a fine on the spot.

  • How many points is 20 km/h over the speed limit?

    It depends on the speed limit and circumstances. For example, if you're caught driving 20 mph at 20 mph, the case will likely go to a magistrate's court, where you could face a hefty fine and a driving ban.

    However, if you are caught driving 140 km/h in a 110 km/h zone, you can get three points on your driver's license. Avoid scoring at all by respecting the speed limit of the road you are on.

  • How much is a 20 mph ticket?

    It depends on the speed limit and circumstances. For example, if you're caught driving 20 mph at 20 mph, the case will likely go to a magistrate's court, where you could face a hefty fine and a driving ban.

    However, if you are caught doing 90mph in a 70mph zone you can face a £100 fine along with penalty points. Avoid scoring at all by respecting the speed limit of the road you are on.

  • How fast can you drive over the speed limit?

    Technically, you could be fined if you exceed the limit by just 1km/h, although this is unlikely, especially with fixed speed cameras. In April 2019,researchfound that most police forces in the UK operate speed cameras with a tolerance of 10% plus 2mph which, for example, would penalize motorists for driving over 35mph in a 30mph zone.

  • How much does my insurance increase after a traffic ticket?

    When it comes to getting coverage, the cost of your premium is based on your perceived level of risk and if you were caught speeding, this increases your perceived level of risk.

    All of this means that if you're caught exceeding the limit, you're likely to face higher premium costs. Exactly how much more expensive will depend on your driving history and the severity of the offense, but it's definitely something to consider.

  • Do you have to declare speed awareness to insurance companies?

    If your insurance company asks you if you have taken a speed awareness course, you should inform them truthfully, otherwise your policy could be void and your coverage may be void.

    However, whether participation in speed training is taken into account when calculating the premium depends on your insurance provider.

  • What happens if I don't take my Speed ​​Awareness course?

    A course cancellation is referred back to the responsible police station, which then decides how to proceed. You may be offered another date or face a fine or a different penalty.

    If you are ill or unable to do your speed training for any reason, you should inform the course provider as soon as possible, who will often require a medical certificate as proof of illness.

  • Can you lose your driver's license for speeding?

    Put simply, yes. While most drivers caught speeding face three points and a £100 fine, more serious cases could face a hefty fine and even lose your licence.

    You could also lose your driver's license if you are speeded several times in a short space of time. So stay on the right side of the law and respect all speed limits.

  • How long do speeding points stay on your driver's license?

    Penalty points or "affirmations" remain on your driver's license for either four or eleven years, depending on the offence. With a four-year endorsement, the points are “valid” for three years.

  • How do you check if you were caught speeding?

    There is no way to check if you have been caught speeding, you will have to wait to see if you receive a notice from the local police in the post which you should receive within 14 days.

  • How do you report speeding on your road?

    If you witness a motorist driving dangerously near you, you can call the police non-emergency number 101 and inform them of the incident. You may be asked about the incident and asked for any evidence you may have gathered.

  • What is the minimum penalty for speeding?

    The minimum penalty for a motorist caught speeding is a £100 fine.

  • How to complain about speeding cars in the UK?

    If you witness a motorist speeding dangerously in your area, you can call the police non-emergency number 101 and inform them of the incident. You may be asked about the incident and asked for any evidence you may have gathered.

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Speeding Fines - Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can you fail a speed awareness course?

    In the UK, a speed awareness course doesn't come with any tests, so technically you can't fail the course. However, the workshop leaders expect you to participate and collaborate with them throughout the course. If you don't do this, they will call the police to let them know you didn't follow the court's instructions. This may result in re-taking the course or more serious consequences.

  • How long is a speed awareness course on Zoom?

    The National Speed ​​Awareness Course lasts 2 hours and 45 minutes and also includes a 10-15 minute break. The course covers all the information you need to avoid re-offending.

  • How long does a speed awareness course stay saved?

    It will remain on your police record for three years. If you're caught speeding within this time frame, you'll likely get an immediate fine and points on your driver's license.

  • Can I do my speed awareness course online?

    Virtual online courses can be booked with any course provider so that you can "participate" from home. You must enter this when booking the course in the portal.

  • How often can you take a speed awareness course?

    A speed awareness course can only be offered to an offender once every three years from the last date of issue by the police. You must book your course within 28 days of the date of the invitation and attend on the day of the instruction.

  • How long does it take to find out if you're speeding?

    Should you be in a situation where you believe you have been caught speeding, you will have to wait two weeks to be told in the mail. This will be a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP). After that, there may be a fine.

  • What is involved in a speed awareness course?

    The Speed ​​Awareness Course is a classroom-style workshop for up to 20 people, where you discuss why you've been speeding, the consequences of breaking the law - and then engage in group activities to relearn the Highway Code.

  • What can I expect from a Speed ​​Awareness course?

    You are there to relearn the basics of speeding in the UK. The key part of the course is to understand why you should better obey the highway code and obey the speed limits.

  • Need to answer questions about an online speed awareness course?

    Although there are no tests, you must participate in group assignments and discussions. So if you are asked a question, you are expected to answer it to the best of your ability.

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