Drug Driving

Drug Driving


This offence is most commonly charged under Section 5A of the Road Traffic Act 1988

It is an offence for a person to drive or attempt to drive a motor vehicle when on a road or other public place when the level of a specific drug exceeds the prescribed limit for that drug. This can include not only recreational drugs such as cannabis but also prescription drugs.

For prescription drugs it is a defence if it can be proven that the medication was taken in line with medical guidance and manufacturer’s guidance.

Similarly it is an offence to be “in charge” of a motor vehicle with the level of a specified drug exceeding the prescribed limit for that drug.

This is usually analysed by a blood sample taken in police custody.

A number of drugs stay in your system for over 48 hours.


For this offence there is a mandatory minimum 12 month disqualification from driving. Depending upon the circumstances of the particular offence fines as well as custodial sentences may be attached.

If you are convicted of a second offence within 10 years of the same nature, disqualification periods begin at 36 months.

For being in charge, there is a discretionary disqualification but mandatory 10 point endorsement.

If special reasons can be shown, you may avoid disqualification.

How we can assist:

Our solicitors have successfully represented several clients at the police station and at court for drug driving offences. Being found with drugs in your system is not enough to be convicted of this offence. Our solicitors have successfully defended clients who have taken medication in line with their prescriptions and medical advice and been found not guilty. It must also be proven that you had the intention to drive to be convicted. If this cannot be proven, you are not guilty.

Our solicitors are experienced in advocating and raising the issues of “special reasons” in your personal circumstances to avoid a ban.

If you have been charged with this offence and summoned to Court, contact us immediately to discuss your matter.