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How Long Do Police Have to Issue a Speeding Ticket?

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Scott Nelson

Managing Director

MoneyNerd’s founder, Scott Nelson, has a decade of financial industry experience, including 6 years in FCA regulated loan and credit card companies. Troubled by a lack of conscience in the industry, he founded MoneyNerd to give genuine advice to those in debt and struggling financially.

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Janine Marsh

Financial Expert

Janine Marsh is an award-winning presenter and a valuable member of the MoneyNerd team. With a wealth of experience as a financial expert, she's been featured on BBC Radio 4, BBC Local Radio, and BBC Five Live, and is a regular on Co-op Radio.

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· Feb 7th, 2024
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How Long Do Police Have to Issue a Speeding Ticket

Are you feeling upset about a speeding ticket? You might be asking how long the police have to send one.

Well, we have the answers here to help you. Each month, over 130,000 people visit our website seeking advice on fines and parking tickets. 

In this guide, we’ll talk about:

  • How long the police have to issue a speeding ticket
  • Whether you have to pay the fine right away
  • How to understand your speeding ticket
  • What happens if you don’t get a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) within 14 days
  • Ways to figure out if you should pay or appeal

We know getting a speeding ticket is not fun; some of us have been there too. With our expertise, we’ll help you understand what to do next.

Do You Have to Pay Speeding Fines?

In some circumstances, you might have a legitimate reason not to pay your speeding fine.

It’s a bit sneaky, but the last time I needed legal advice, I paid £5 for a trial to chat with an online solicitor called JustAnswer.

Not only did I save £50 on solicitor feeds, I also won my case and didn’t have to pay my £271 fine.

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How long do police have to send a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP)?

Unless you were given a verbal NIP by a police officer who pulled you over, the registered vehicle keeper must receive a NIP in the post within 14 days from the date of the alleged speeding offence. 

What happens if you don’t receive a NIP within 14 days?

Suppose the registered vehicle keeper doesn’t receive a Notice of Intended Prosecution within 14 days of the alleged speeding offence. In that case, the police can no longer prosecute the driver for this speeding offence. This means you cannot be served a Fixed Penalty Notice and therefore don’t have to pay a fine or accept penalty points on your license. 

This is the law! 

How long do police have to send a speeding ticket?

The police must send the actual speeding ticket, i.e. the Fixed Penalty Notice, within six months of the date of the offence. As I see it, they can only send the speeding ticket if they previously sent the Notice of Intended Prosecution within 14 days. 

Speeding ticket disputes UK

When you look online for how long the police have to send a speeding ticket, you’ll find many answers stating 14 days. However, these answers confuse the Notice of Intended Prosecution with the actual speeding ticket. Yes, the NIP must be sent within 14 days. From my experience, once the NIP has been returned and the guilty driver identified, the Fixed Penalty Notice has to be sent within six months. 

Successful Appeal Case Study

Situation

Initial Fine £100
Additional Fees £171
Total Fine £271

The Appeal Process

Scott used JustAnswer, online legal service to enhance his appeal. The trial of this cost him just £5.

Total Fine £271
Cost of legal advice £5

JustAnswer helped Scott craft the best appeal possible and he was able to win his case.

Scott’s fine was cancelled and he only paid £5 for the legal help.

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What happens if I receive a speeding ticket after 14 days?

Nothing will happen if you receive a speeding ticket after 14 days of the alleged offence because the police have up to six months to send the speeding ticket. On the other hand, if you receive the Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) more than 14 days after the alleged offence, the guilty driver cannot be prosecuted. 

Are NIPs ever late?

Yes, it has been known for the police to send the Notice of Intended Prosecution late. This usually happens when the police send the NIP thinking it will arrive in time. However, due to bank holidays or a delayed postal service, the NIP can arrive 15 days or more after the alleged speeding offence occurred.

There could be legal ramifications if a NIP is sent to the wrong address because the vehicle owner’s registered address is outdated or incorrect. It is your legal obligation to provide the most current contact information to the DVLA. If you fail to do so, you could be fined up to £1,000.

» TAKE ACTION NOW: Get legal support from JustAnswer

How long after getting caught by a speed camera do you get a letter?

When you receive a letter depends on the traffic enforcement measures. The Notice of Intended Prosecution letter will usually be received within the 14 days allowed if you were caught on camera.

It’s important to remember you won’t receive one of these letters if a police officer stops you and they give you a verbal Notice of Intended Prosecution. 

How long does it take for a speeding ticket to come through the post (UK)?

Although the police have up to six months to send the Fixed Penalty Notice, it usually arrives sooner. Timescales can differ for many reasons. If you’ve already responded to a NIP, you’ll know it’s coming. 

What else can happen when you get caught speeding?

Sometimes you won’t be fined for speeding. A police officer may give you a verbal warning instead of a verbal Notice of Intended Prosecution. They may be more lenient if you only slightly exceed the speed limit for a short period.

On the other hand, you can be subject to more severe punishment. If you were caught speeding and already have eight or more penalty points on your license, you can be hit with the maximum fine and summoned to court, which could lead to a driving ban. 

Speed Awareness Courses

In some cases, drivers who have exceeded the limit slightly, or first-time offenders, might get the chance to participate in a speed awareness course rather than receive a ticket. The fee for the course is usually between £80 and £120.

Getting the support of a Solicitor can take a huge weight off your mind.

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What happens after you get caught speeding?

You can be caught speeding by a police officer on patrol or by speed cameras. The process of being issued a speeding ticket – also called a Fixed Penalty Notice – can differ depending on how you were caught speeding. 

Traffic stops UK

The police may also ask you to do a breathalyser test and check your vehicle for defects. If you’re found to be over the limit or have faults with your car, you may be convicted on other counts too.

Importance of NIP UK

If a police officer pulls you over, they can give you a verbal Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP). However, if you’re caught on camera, the registered vehicle owner will receive the speeding offence notification in the post. 

The NIP you receive in the post includes a form to be completed and sent back within 28 days. This gives the registered vehicle owner a chance to tell the police they were the ones speeding or to notify the police that someone else was driving the car at the time. 

Once the offending driver has been confirmed, the Fixed Penalty Notice will be sent to that person. They can then accept the fine and penalty points or challenge the speeding ticket in court. 

How much is a speeding ticket in the UK?

Speeding tickets in the UK are capped at £2,500 on motorways and £1,000 on other roads. As the speeding fine is based on a percentage of your weekly income, two people can be fined different amounts for the same type of speeding offence. 

Some of the worst speeding offences can cost up to 700% of your weekly income – without exceeding the caps!

Does a speeding ticket affect your insurance UK?

Yes. If you receive points on your licence as a result of speeding, insurers will deem you to be a risky driver and your insurance premiums can increase dramatically.

It might be tempting to simply not inform your insurer about tickets you have received. However, according to UK insurance regulations, you must inform your insurance company about any endorsements you have been given. Failing to do so can lead to criminal charges as you will be guilty of fraudulently withholding information.

Furthermore, your policy will be invalidated and any future claims you make will probably be turned down.

As you can see above, this MoneySavingExpert forum user was caught speeding on a 30mph road but was not offered a course, while their husband was offered one despite driving at a higher speed on a 30mph road.

Although it seems unfair, the police force handling the case decides if a driver qualifies. If they do, the driver can avoid a fine and points on their license. Unfortunately in this case, the offending driver was not given the opportunity to take part on a course.

Road safety UK

The aim of the course is to educate drivers about speeding and to stop them from re-offending. Practising safe driving will reduce the risk of serious collisions on the road. The best way to stay safe, and avoid hefty fines and penalty points, is to obey speed limits and drive safely.

Hire a Solicitor for less than a coffee.

If you’re thinking about appealing your speeding fine then getting some professional advice is a good idea.

Getting the support of a Solicitor can make your appeal much more likely to win.

For a £5 trial, Solicitors from JustAnswer can look at your case and help you create an airtight appeal.

Try it below

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How long do police have to issue a speeding ticket? (Quick recap)

The police have up to six months to issue a speeding ticket as long as the registered vehicle keeper previously received a Notice of Intended Prosecution letter within 14 days of the incident. Or as long as they received a verbal Notice of Intended Prosecution instead.

The authors
Scott Nelson Profile Picture
Author
MoneyNerd’s founder, Scott Nelson, has a decade of financial industry experience, including 6 years in FCA regulated loan and credit card companies. Troubled by a lack of conscience in the industry, he founded MoneyNerd to give genuine advice to those in debt and struggling financially.
Janine Marsh Profile Picture
Appeals Expert
Janine Marsh is an award-winning presenter and a valuable member of the MoneyNerd team. With a wealth of experience as a financial expert, she's been featured on BBC Radio 4, BBC Local Radio, and BBC Five Live, and is a regular on Co-op Radio.
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