Obligatory disqualification for driving offences
Produced in partnership with Red Lion Chambers
Obligatory disqualification for driving offences

The following Corporate Crime guidance note Produced in partnership with Red Lion Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Obligatory disqualification for driving offences
  • Offences which require obligatory disqualification
  • The duration of obligatory disqualification
  • Extended period of disqualification
  • Reduced disqualification for attendance on approved course
  • Disqualification until passing of extended driving test
  • Exceptions to obligatory disqualification
  • The impact of a second conviction on obligatory disqualification
  • Notice of appeal in cases involving obligatory disqualification

Offences which require obligatory disqualification

Offences which carry obligatory disqualification are set out in Schedule 2, Parts I and II of the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 (RTOA 1988).

These include:

  1. causing death by dangerous driving

  2. dangerous driving

  3. causing death by careless driving

  4. driving or attempting to drive when unfit

  5. driving with excess alcohol, and

  6. causing death or serious injury by driving while disqualified

The duration of obligatory disqualification

Where an offence requires obligatory disqualification the period of disqualification is for a minimum of 12 months.

Offences of:

  1. manslaughter

  2. causing death by dangerous driving, and

  3. causing death by careless driving while under the influence of drink or drugs

all require an offender to be disqualified for a minimum of two years.

Disqualification runs from the moment it is announced in court. See R v Bain [1973] RTR 213 (not reported by LexisNexis®)).

In cases where a defendant is sentenced for two or more driving offences which require him to be disqualified, the court should impose concurrent periods of disqualification, rather than consecutive.

The court cannot order disqualification to run from the day a defendant is released from prison. See R v Lambert [1974] RTR 244 (not reported by LexisNexis®).

If the defendant is being sentenced for two or more offences which carry penalties of both obligatory disqualification and penalty points disqualification then only one period of disqualification should be made.

The courts have determined

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