Drink Driving Defence Solicitors

Drink Driving – Driving with Excess Alcohol

The police can stop anyone if they think they may be driving with too much alcohol in their body.

If stopped, the driver will be asked to take a breathalyser test to measure the amount of alcohol in their breath. If the test is positive, the driver will be arrested and taken to a police station for further tests – possibly involving blood and urine.

Failure to give the police a proper sample is a separate criminal offence and unless you can prove that you had a reasonable excuse not to provide a sample, you could face severe penalties.

What is driving with excess alcohol?

The legal alcohol limit for drivers in England and Wales is:

  • 35 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath
  • 80 milligrammes in 100 millilitres of blood
  • 107 milligrammes per 100 millilitres of urine

However it is not possible to say how much alcohol you can drink and stay below the limit. Your alcohol level depends upon many factors including:

  • weight, age, gender and metabolism
  • type and amount of alcohol consumed
  • eating patterns
  • stress levels

Failure to provide a specimen- What is a reasonable excuse?

The police are able to request a specimen should they suspect you have driven under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Failure to give the police a proper sample is a separate criminal offence and unless you can prove that you had a reasonable excuse not to provide a sample, you could face severe penalties.

There are a number of reasonable excuses as to why a breath, blood or urine sample could not be provided which may be put forward as a defence, including:

  • Asthma, reduced lung capacity, anxiety and panic attacks
  • Genuine phobia of needles
  • Prostate problems
  • The police have not followed the appropriate procedures

To successfully put forward a reasonable excuse defence you will need the assistance of a specialist road traffic defence solicitor who will seek expert medical evidence to support your case.

Drink Driving Penalties

If you are convicted of failure to provide a specimen or driving with excess alcohol the penalties are:

  • Disqualification from driving for a minimum of 12 months
  • Prison sentence of up to six months
  • An unlimited fine

In turn, the consequences of this often include:-

  • Job loss
  • Loss of independence
  • Shame of having a criminal conviction
  • Trouble getting into countries like the USA
  • Massive increase in car insurance costs and some companies won’t insure you

The IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) calculates that a drink drive conviction could cost up to £50,000 as a result.

If you have committed any other alcohol driving offences within the last ten years, this will result in a minimum three-year disqualification from driving.

In these circumstances, it is vital that you contact a lawyer who can help you build a strong case for defence so you stand the best chance of reducing your penalty.

Our services

Our dedicated team of driving offence solicitors will be able to guide you through the complexities involved with building a strong defence case. Our Yorkshire based lawyers have many years of experience in helping drivers facing allegations of driving with excess alcohol.

Contact us

To speak to a lawyer about a d, please contact our offices based in Leeds, York and Sheffield by using the details on the enquiry form. If you require assistance immediately, please call us on our 24/7 mobile number on 07971 520407

Jeremy (Scott), I just wanted to thank you for today. I think your presence with me at the police station really helped, and lead to the charges being dropped.


Thank you once again for all your help (Jeremy Scott) and support through, what was, an extremely stressful time and also for achieving such a positive outcome for myself. I honestly thought I would get 8 points and a huge fine, so that was a massive relief.


Thank you Meghan for all your help - we obviously did a good job between us to get the result. I am ever so pleased you represented me as I felt very cared for throughout the whole process - thank you once again .


Thank you for your support (Meghan Waldron) and for keeping the cost to a minimum. We truly appreciate your thoughtfulness in this case.


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