Driving while using mobile phone, Glasgow, 26 June 2018, case dismissed
Driving while using a mobile phone now carries 6 penalty points. Our client was therefore justifiably concerned when he came to see us after being mistakenly accused by the police of using his phone while driving on the M8.
In this case our client was offered a fixed penalty which he was in a position to accept; however, on a point of principle, he contacted us instead.
On review of our client’s papers we quickly identified a legal defence to the charge. We thereafter succeeded in having the case dismissed without the need for a trial.
Our data on the public perception of penalties for driving while using a mobile phone is mixed. Data suggested that, since the new penalties came into effect, the amount of fixed penalties issued had dropped from around 80,000 a year to 20,000 a year. This suggests that the message is getting through. However the BBC recently reported that two-thirds of drivers are actually unaware of the new penalties:
It may be that the reason for reduced fixed penalties is that the amount of people eligible has decreased substantially. While previously anyone with up to 8 points would have been eligible for a fixed penalty, the increased penalties now mean anyone with 6 points or more will not be eligible.
This case was handled by Steven Farmer at Glasgow Justice of the Peace Court on 26 June 2018,