1. Obligatory disqualification

Some offences carry obligatory disqualification for a minimum of 12 months (Road Traffic Offenders Act (“RTOA”) 1988, s.34). The minimum period is automatically increased where there have been certain previous convictions and disqualifications.

An offender must be disqualified for at least two years if he or she has been disqualified two or more times for a period of at least 56 days in the three years preceding the commission of the offence (RTOA 1988, s.34(4)). The following disqualifications are to be disregarded for the purposes of this provision:

  • interim disqualification;
  • disqualification where vehicle used for the purpose of crime;
  • disqualification for stealing or taking a vehicle or going equipped to steal or take a vehicle.

An offender must be disqualified for at least three years if he or she is convicted of one of the following offences and has within the 10 years preceding the commission of the offence been convicted of any of these offences (RTOA 1988, s.34(3)):

  • causing death by careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs;
  • driving or attempting to drive while unfit;
  • driving or attempting to drive with excess alcohol;
  • failing to provide a specimen (drive/attempting to drive).

The individual offence guidelines indicate whether disqualification is mandatory for the offence and the applicable minimum period. Consult your legal adviser for further guidance.