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Drunk in Charge

We have years of experience of successfully defending drunk in charge of a motor vehicle cases. For free initial advice call 0800 999 5535


Success Rate* From Jan 2018

*Based on results from Jan 2018.  

100% found not guilty or not disqualified

90% Success rate

Read About Our Court Victories

Our specialist team of drunk in charge of a motor vehicle solicitors have years of experience successfully defending drunk in charge cases.  Call our team today for free initial advice on 0800 999 5535 or submit your case and we will call you back

Being Drunk in Charge of a Motor Vehicle

In 1925, it became a driving offence to be in charge of a motor propelled vehicle whilst under the influence of alcohol.  The definition of this offence is:

“a person in charge of any motor vehicle on a road or other public place after consuming so much alcohol that the proportion of it in his breath, blood or urine exceeds the prescribed limit he is guilty of an offence”

A motorist can unintentionally end up in this position for a number of reasons

  • They decide to sleep in their car after a night out
  • Obtain belongings from their car
  • Have the engine running in their car whilst under the influence of alcohol but with no intention to drive

To prosecute there must be a realistic reason to believe that the person who is under the influence of alcohol has an intention to take control of the vehicle.

Defending a drunk in charge chase

The burden of proof

It is recommended that you get legal advice, as unlike other driving offences, the burden of proof is on the defence to evidence you had no intention to take control of the vehicle.

We have the technical expertise to advise you on all aspects of your case.  Areas we will look at include

  • Breath/blood/ urine reading (unfitness)
  • Rate at which you would have metabolised the alcohol
  • That you would not have taken control of the vehicle whilst still unfit
  • Accuracy of the reading
  • Police technical and procedural errors
  • Factual circumstances relating to the offence
  • Mitigating circumstances
  • Expert evidence

It is important that we review all the evidence, so we can provide you with an honest assessment of your case and if a defence is available, so  we can provide you with best possible options available to you.


Sentencing Guidelines

  • Fine and/or imprisonment for a maximum of 6 months
  • Endorsement of 10 points or disqualification from driving (usually up to 12 months)


Should I drive to Court?
This depends on your plea: Yes, if you are pleading not guilty. No, if you are to be sentenced for an offence that carries a mandatory disqualification.

Our advice is that anyone who faces the possibility of a period of disqualification, no matter how small, should not drive to Court.

The Police Officer said that if I instruct a Solicitor I can avoid a disqualification, is this true?
This can be true in a lot of cases, however, if it is your intention to plead guilty to an offence that carries a mandatory period of disqualification, then the Magistrates have no discretion not to impose a period of disqualification.

I really need my car for my job, will the Court let me keep my licence?

If you are facing a disqualification for accumulating 12 penalty points or more (‘totting up’) or facing a sentence that carries a discretionary disqualification, then it is possible to persuade the Magistrates not to disqualify you. However, if you are to be sentenced for an offence that carries a mandatory disqualification, like driving with excess alcohol for example, then these types of offences carry a mandatory disqualification and the Magistrates have no discretion. In those circumstances you will only avoid a ban if your case is successfully defended after a not guilty plea.

Do you cover cases on Legal Aid?
No. All our cases are on a private paying fixed fee basis. We will tell you what your exact fees will be before you engage us. We cover Courts throughout England and Wales. Only general Criminal Defence Solicitors (not road traffic specialists) based in an area close to where your Court case is, will have a Legal Aid Contract. You may not be eligible for Legal Aid in any event. The two tests for whether you are eligible for Legal Aid are

  1. Whether you are financially eligible
  2. Whether it is in the interest of Justice for you to receive Legal Aid for the offence that you are due to appear before the Court for. For almost all road traffic matters you will not be eligible for Legal Aid as for a lot of cases the Sentence is a financial penalty and either penalty points or a disqualification.

Will I have to say anything in Court?
Once we are instructed by you, we will advise you of the precise Court procedure. If you are pleading guilty to an offence, then you will only have to confirm your name and enter your plea. We will present the mitigation on your behalf.

If you are pleading not guilty, you may have to give evidence at your Trial, but you will be guided by Millars Solicitors.

What are my chances, can you give me a percentage?
We would not give a client their chance of success in a percentage. It is a bit of a nonsense to give percentage chances of success. We provide all clients with a comprehensive assessment of their case and we are instructed by the clients with the client knowing that they have been advised whether there are strong grounds or a strong chance of success or a limited chance of succeeding with what their expectations are.

Will the Police or witnesses be in Court?
If you are pleading guilty or if it is your first hearing and you are pleaded not guilty then the witnesses will not be in Court.

If your matter is listed for a Trial, then the witnesses will be in Court as the Court will want to hear what the witnesses have to say.




From Our Clients


Guilty plea

DON’T plead guilty until you let us look at your case. See how we can help you avoid a ban or significantly reduce your sentence.

Ask Carl

Did you fail to give a sample?  Concerned you have to plead guilty? Tell us about your case and we will review it and let you know

Not Guilty Plea

The police must prove to the court that you are guilty of the offence for which you have been charged. This must be proved beyond reasonable doubt. See how we have helped our clients defend their plea.

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About Keep My Driving Licence

Keep My Driving Licence is part of Millars Solicitors who are a specialist firm of road traffic and drink driving solicitors who represent motorists all over the country.

Formed by Carl Millar, Millars Solicitors has adopted his dogged tenacity and exacting technical understanding of motoring law. Before starting Millars Solicitors, Carl has been employed as the Head of Department at some of the most high profile Motoring Law Firms in the country. He is a member of the Society of Motoring Lawyers and has an enviable nationwide reputation for the results he gets for his clients.

Through representing a wide range of people you will find Carl and his team very approachable and never judgemental. Their advice is straightforward and will leave no stone unturned in pursuing all available defences in presenting your case.

If you have been caught drink driving you can contact Carl today on 0800 999 5535 or your can send a confidential email by clicking here. If you need to speak to a drink driving solicitor out of office hours than please call the 24 hour emergency line on 07855 806119.