Speeding fines 2020: How much will you have to pay?

Speeding tops the list of the most common motoring offences in the UK.

If you’re caught putting the pedal to the metal, don’t just assume you’ll get a basic fine and points on your licence. There are different fines for different speeds, and some can mean serious penalties.

Speeding tops the list of the most common motoring offences in the UK.

If you’re caught putting the pedal to the metal, don’t just assume you’ll get a basic fine and points on your licence. There are different fines for different speeds, and some can mean serious penalties.

Daniel Hutson
From the Motor team
4
minute read
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Posted 14 DECEMBER 2020

How much is a speeding fine in the UK? 

The minimum penalty for speeding is a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) fine of £100 and three points on your driving licence.  
 
If it’s your first offence, and depending on the police force in the area, you may be offered a speed-awareness course instead of getting points. 
 
If you get 12 points or more on your licence over a three-year period, you could end up with a driving ban.  
 
New drivers who have built up more than six penalty points within two years of passing their driving test could also have their licence immediately revoked. 

What happens if you get caught by a speed camera?

If you’re caught speeding by a speed camera, you’ll be sent a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) and a Section 172 notice within 14 days of committing the offence.

You must send back the Section 172 notice within 28 days, telling the police who was driving the car. You’ll then receive a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) or a letter telling you to go to court.

What happens if you’re stopped by the police?

If you’re stopped by the police, it’s likely you’ll receive either a verbal warning or an FPN.

If you were speeding excessively, or are repeatedly stopped for speeding, the penalty could be more severe, and police could order you to go to court. This will be up to the police officer who stopped you and how serious they think the speeding offence was.

What about the 10% leeway?

There’s a perception that there’s a so-called ‘buffer zone’ of 10% plus two mph over the speed limit. But the fact is that it’s totally up to the police whether they decide to penalise you or not.

Even if you do 31mph in a 30mph zone, you’re technically breaking the law.

How might you end up in court?

If you plead not guilty and decide to dispute the charge, you’ll have to go to court. You may also end up in court if you’ve gone way over the speed limit, have repeatedly committed a speeding offence, or have ignored an FPN you were issued.

If you end up in court and are found guilty, you could face a higher fine, more penalty points and a possible driving ban.

How are speeding fines calculated?

The amount you’re fined, and the number of penalty points you get depends on how fast you were going over the speed limit.

If you’re found guilty of speeding and are taken to court, you’ll be put into band A, B or C.

Band A

Legal speed limit (mph)  Recorded speed (mph) 
20 21-30 
30 31-40 
40 41-55 
50 51-65 
60 61-80 
70 71-90 

Points = Three penalty points

Fine = 50% of your relevant weekly income, although the magistrate can fine you anywhere in the range of 25%-75%, up to a maximum of £1,000 (£2,500 if you’re caught on the motorway).

Band B

Legal speed limit (mph)  Recorded speed (mph) 
20 31-40 
30 41-50 
40 56-65 
50 66-75 
60 81-90 
70 91-100 

 

Disqualification/points = disqualified for 7-28 days or 4-6 penalty points

Fine = 100% of relevant weekly income, although the magistrate can fine you anywhere in the range of 75%-125%, up to a maximum of £1,000 (£2,500 if you’re caught on the motorway).

Band C

Legal speed limit (mph)  Recorded speed (mph) 
20 41 and above 
30 51 and above 
40 66 and above 
50 76 and above 
60 91 and above 
70 101 and above 

Disqualification/points = disqualified for 7-56 days or 6 penalty points 

Fine = 150% of your relevant weekly salary, although the magistrate can find you anywhere in a range of 125%-175%, up to a maximum of £1,000 (£2,500 if you’re caught on the motorway). 

What else could affect the court’s decision?

As well as the speed you were doing, there are other things the court will want to consider. For example, speeding near a school or in poor weather could go against you. Speeding in an HGV could also be bad, as lorries could potentially cause more damage than cars.

Can I dispute a speeding fine?

If you think you were given a speeding ticket unfairly, you can dispute it. There’s a section on the NIP for doing this. You’ll need to submit it within 28 days.

Be careful about your reasons, though. If the police don’t accept your appeal, you could be taken to court. If things don’t go your way, you could end up with a much heavier fine.

Some appeals can be won on technicalities. But you’ll need proof, like photos or videos, if you want to show these in court:

  • the speed limit sign was unclear or absent
  • you can prove you weren’t driving
  • missing or incorrect details on the speeding ticket
  • it was a genuine emergency

Bear in mind that courts have heard every excuse out there. What won’t cut it:

  • you were in a rush due to an emergency, but can’t prove it
  • you weren’t aware of the speed limit
  • you didn’t notice the speed limit had gone down
  • it was late at night and the road was quiet

If you have to go to court, it’s advisable to get legal advice. If legal expense cover is included in your car insurance, it might cover your solicitors’ fees.

It’s my first speeding offence. Can I do a speed-awareness course instead?

If it’s your first speeding offence, and relatively minor, you may be offered a speed-awareness course instead of getting three points on your licence. Not all police forces in the UK offer speed awareness courses though, so it can depend on your region.

You’ll have to pay for the course yourself. It typically costs between £80-£100. If you don’t turn up for your course, you could be re-issued a fine and given penalty points.

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, physical classroom courses have been replaced with online courses. Find out more on the National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme website.

Can I check if I’ve been caught speeding?

If you’re not sure if you were zapped by a speed camera, you’ll just have to wait and see if a ticket arrives in the post. You should receive a notice within 14 days.

How long do penalty points stay on my licence?

Penalty points for speeding stay on your licence for four or 11 years, depending on the offence.

Can I check if I have points on my licence?

You can view information about your driving licence and check whether you have penalty points on the gov.uk website.

If you have penalty points for speeding, you’ll also see a code for the type of speeding offence. The most common are:

  • SP30 – speeding on a public road
  • SP50 – speeding on a motorway

Will a speeding ticket affect my car insurance?

It could do. Speeding is not only a motoring offence, it’s highly dangerous. If you’ve had a speeding fine in the last five years, insurance providers may consider you a greater risk and this might bump up the cost of your car insurance.

If you have penalty points for speeding, Compare the Market can find you quotes from a range of car insurance providers. We can also help you compare specialist car insurance for convicted drivers.

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