What happens if you’re caught speeding? Suella Braverman in spotlight for speeding awareness course request

Suella Braverman is in the spotlight again, facing allegations she asked civil servants help her avoid points on her licence  (Victoria Jones / PA)
Suella Braverman is in the spotlight again, facing allegations she asked civil servants help her avoid points on her licence (Victoria Jones / PA)

Home Secretary Suella Braverman has caused controversy by reportedly trying to dodge a group speeding-awareness course after being caught speeding in the summer of 2022.

Braverman, who was caught speeding in a 50mph zone last summer, was faced with either paying a fine and getting three points on her licence or doing a speed awareness course.

According to The Sunday Times, Braverman requested civil servants arrange a private one-to-one course, rather than enrolling in a classroom setting with other drivers or completing an online course that would have revealed her identity to other students.

She reportedly sought assistance from a political aide after the civil servants refused, and the political aide asked the course organiser for a private session, permission to use an identity, or permission to turn off her camera.

When the service provider objected, Braverman decided to accept the three points on her licence, according to the newspaper.

But how do you get caught speeding and how much is a speeding fine?

How do you get caught speeding?

If you’re caught speeding on camera, you’ll be sent a notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) Section 172 notice within 14 days. You must return the Section 172 notice within 28 days, telling the police who was driving the car.

Don’t ignore the notice as you may have to go to court.

Once you send the Section 172 notice back, you’ll be sent a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) or a letter telling you to attend a court date.

If you’re stopped by the police, they can give you a verbal warning, give or send you an FPN, or order you to go to court. A letter sent to your home address will tell you what to do.

How much is a speeding fine?

According to the Government website, a £100 fine and three penalty points will be applied to your licence, minimum.

If you get 12 or more penalty points within three years, you risk losing your driving privileges. Check your driving record to see if you have any points.

If it is your first offence, England, Wales, and Northern Ireland may offer you a speed-awareness course instead of penalty points, but you will still be responsible for the course expenses, which are typically around £100.

Although many drivers are given the choice of taking a speed awareness course, you can instead face a court prosecution based on the severity of the violation or other considerations, such as prior speeding convictions.

If so, the highest fine you may receive is £1,000; however, if the infraction was committed on a motorway, the maximum fine would be £2,500.

How long do points stay on your licence?

If you are found guilty of a driving offence, the court has the power to punish you and “endorse” your driving record with penalty points.

Depending on the offence, endorsements must remain on your driving record for four or 11 years.