Driving without due care and attention (Careless driving)

What is driving without due care and attention?

Careless driving or driving without due care and attention or careless driving is defined as;

  1. Driving that falls below the standard expected of a competent driver; or
  2. Driving that does not show reasonable consideration for other persons using the road or pathways

If you are found guilty of careless driving a court can impose between 3 and 9 penalty points, or disqualify you. It is therefore a serious matter, and one for which you should always seek specialist advice.

Since August 2013 the police now have the power to offer fixed penalties for careless driving. You do not have to accept a fixed penalty. If you think you have done nothing wrong then you should get in touch to discuss matters properly and take advice on whether to accept. If you decide not to accept that you have the right to reject the fixed penalty and fight the case in court.

If you are prosecuted for driving without due care and attention the prosecution has to prove that your driving fell below the expected driving level of a competent driver, and this has to be proved beyond reasonable doubt. With specialist assistance from our Lincolnshire Motoring Defence Team, you can be sure that you stand the best possible chance of being found not guilty.

Examples of driving without due care and attention

All sorts of driving could be said to be careless, from a moment’s inattention to driving into another vehicle or pedestrian. Drivers using mobile phones were often prosecuted for careless driving but there is now a specific offence covering this. Eating or smoking whilst driving, or changing a CD, would all be examples of careless driving. Other examples would include;

  • Driving inappropriately close to another vehicle
  • Driving through a red light
  • Turning into the path of another vehicle
  • Colliding with a pedestrian
  • Overtaking on the inside

What happens if you get caught driving without due care and attention?

If you are caught driving without due care and attention you will either receive a Notice of Intended Prosecution detailing the offence or a summons requiring you to attend court. It is essential that you contact us at this stage so that we can advise you on the steps to be taken.

There can be a fine line between what is classed as an accident rather than driving without due care and attention. If it is an accident then this is normally dealt with through insurance companies. As soon as the police become involved then they are looking at a criminal prosecution and you should receive immediate advice from one of our specialist Lincolnshire Motoring Defence Team.

What do you do if you believe you should not be convicted of driving without due care and attention?

If you believe that you are not guilty of careless driving then you should deny the offence in court. The prosecution needs to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt. It is best to be represented. Our specialist team have years of experience in cross examining often difficult witnesses and know how to use the laws of evidence to our clients’ advantage. We strongly advise that you do not leave it to chance. Sometimes, we might have to instruct an expert to prepare a specialised report, reconstructing the available evidence and providing a reasoned opinion as to who was to blame for an accident.

Mitigating circumstances?

You may be able to plead mitigating circumstances, for example, if there was a mechanical fault with your car that you were unaware of at the time of the incident. Although not a defence, this could result in a court dealing with you more favourably.

What is the penalty for driving without due care and attention?

Driving without due care and attention carries a penalty of either a disqualification, or between 3 and 9 points. You can also be faced with a fine up to £2,500 depending on the nature of the incident.

The worse the driving, the worse the penalty will be. The following will always be seen as aggravating features;

  • Excessive speed
  • Carrying out tasks while driving
  • Carrying passengers or a heavy load
  • Tiredness
  • Causing injury
  • Causing damage to other vehicles or property
  • High level of pedestrians or other vehicles
  • Location, such as near a school

If you are pleading guilty it is still essential that you seek advice. If the court is wrongly of the opinion that any of these factors apply, then the sentence could be much worse than it needs to be.

We can help.

The prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that your driving fell below the standards of a careful and competent motorist.

If you do not accept that the standard of your driving fell below that of a reasonable driver, we can advise you on the steps to be taken.

We can advise you on the evidence and represent you in court, putting together a strong case in your defence.

Sometimes, an accident can be just that, an accident, and if your driving is not at fault, then we can advise you on the steps to be taken, and represent you at court if it goes to trial.

If you are being prosecuted for driving without due care and attention contact us today at our offices in Boston, Grantham, Lincoln, Sleaford, Newark or Spalding or Click Here to fill out our online form and we will contact you.

Meet the Team

Tony Freitas


Roger Lowther


Mark McNeil


Kerry Woollason

Kerry.Woollason edit2

Sunil Khanna


Department Menu

For more on our Motoring Defence Services click onto our dedicated Traffic Lawyers Lincolnshire Website

Social Media Feeds

Client Testimonials

You’re amazing Julie!

Thank you so much. It was such a pleasure working with you and we will definitely recommend you to our friends.

Praise for Julie Atkinson

Nerina and her team were excellent, many thanks to you all, we are very happy in our new home and your work made it all go smoothly for us.

Grantham Conveyancing Team

Thank you and your team for all the hard work over the last few months. You have all been absolutely fantastic in everything you did in helping us move. I would not hesitate in recommending you to friends and family and will certainly call on you again if we have the urge to move…

Praise for Bev Kirk and the team

We just wanted to email to thank you for your help and support in both the sale and purchases of our houses – its been a stressful few months and relocating is not for the faint hearted, but we very much appreciated the work that you and the team have done.


Thank you to our conveyancing team

Thank you very much for all the hard work you and your team have done, it is very much appreciated! I would recommend you to anyone!


Feedback for Bev Kirk, Conveyancing Team

May I take this opportunity to say thank you for the manor in which you handled things on my behalf, and should we need any legal services or queries in the future we would not hesitate to contact you.

Praise for Michelle Davis, Personal Injury Team

I want to thank you for the incredible amount of work that you have done for me before and during the trial. I can never thank you enough

Thanks to Jan from our Criminal Department

“…It really was great to work with you and it made the whole buying a first house experience a lot easier knowing that I could pick up the phone and speak to someone who actually cared. Chris and I have both said already that we will be sure to recommend you both to any friends or family looking to move.”

Well done Lorraine & Nina

Great feedback for our conveyancing team

Thank you for your tenacity, tact, thoroughness, diligence, accuracy and most importantly results!

Great testimonial for Sophie our Employment Solicitor

I am SO grateful to you for all of your assistance but I hope you know this already…but many thanks again ( and again ).

Fantastic Feedback for our Employment team

Legal enquiry live chat

If you would like to try it for yourself simply click on the link below to start a chat with one of our Advisors.

Chat Now

Free Newsletter

Join our Mailing List

Signup for a Free monthly newsletter and we will send you an email every month keeping up to date which changes in the law, whats going on at Ringrose Law and any offers we maybe having.

subscribe to our newsletter