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There are three main charges of negligent driving:
The second and third above offences are both very serious charges that carry with them maximum penalties of imprisonment. These charges also carry with them lengthy loss of licence together with other penalties such as likelihood of a criminal conviction.
The nature and elements of the offence of Negligent Driving were considered in Director of Public Prosecutions (NSW) v Yeo and Anor  NSWSC 953 wherein it was said the offence or test for Negligent driving essentially being established is;
….where it is proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused person drove a motor vehicle in a manner involving a departure from the standard of care for other users of the road to be expected of the ordinary prudent driver in the circumstances.
Section 117 of the Road Transport Act 2013 (NSW) provides that;
“a, ‘person must not drive a motor vehicle on a road negligently’.”
Negligent driving is defined as,
“driving without the standard of due care and attention reasonably expected of the ordinary prudent driver”.
Section 117 (3) of the Road Transport Act 2013 provides that the Court must have regard to all the circumstances of the case in considering whether or not your driving was negligent, including the following: –
Any obstructions or hazards on the road (such as broken down or crashed vehicles, fallen loads and accident and emergency vehicles).
Since Negligent Driving offence is a criminal offence, the burden of proof lies on the Prosecution.
National Criminal Lawyers are the one of the best Traffic Lawyers Sydney has to offer and we always ensure the prosecution must prove each of the elements in the charge beyond reasonable doubt.
That is a high standard of proof that the prosecution must achieve before someone can be convicted of Negligent Driving.
To establish Negligent Driving, the prosecution must prove each of the following matters beyond reasonable doubt;
National Criminal Lawyers have been successful in defending a number of Negligent Driving charges where the prosecution could not establish each of the elements of Negligent Driving. We have also achieved a number of non-convictions for Negligent Driving charges.
NCL offer the following options for those who have been charged with Negligent Driving;
If you agree that you have committed the offence and the police are able to prove all the elements of the offence, it is best to plead guilty at an early opportunity to receive the maximum discount. Currently the maximum discount available for an early plea of guilty is 25% of the sentence.
Furthermore, the early guilty plea shows the Court that you have remorse and contrition for your actions.
Our Lawyers at National Criminal Lawyers work closely with you to ensure that we obtain all necessary paper work at increasing the chances of obtaining a non-conviction or section 10.
Negligent driving not occasioning death or GBH is usually dealt with by way of infringement notice. The infringement notice carries with it three demerit points. It doesn’t have a mandatory period of disqualification, although the court can impose a 12-month disqualification period if believed to be appropriate.
Negligent driving occasioning grievous bodily harm carries a maximum of 9 months imprisonment for a first offence and up to 12 months for a second or subsequent offence. It also carries a fine of up to $2,200 for a first offence, and $3,300 for a second or subsequent offence. There is a minimum disqualification period of 12 months with this offence, which increases to two years for a second or subsequent offence.
Negligent driving occasioning death carries with it a maximum 18 months imprisonment for a first offence and two years for subsequent offences. The offence also carries a maximum fine of $3,300 for a first offence, rising to $5,500 for a second or subsequent offence. Upon conviction for negligent driving occasioning death there is also an automatic licence disqualification period of 3 years which in appropriate circumstances, the Court may reduce to the minimum period of 12 months.
Please note that the maximum penalties mentioned are reserved for the worse case offending.
If you decide to plead not guilty you will need to prepare to go to a Defended Hearing.
A defended hearing is where all the witnesses of that case are called to give evidence. The witnesses are both examined by the prosecution and tested by your defence lawyers.
National Criminal Lawyers have defended thousands of people charged with Negligent Driving and are experts at these hearings.
Some of the possible defences available for those charged with Negligent Driving can include;
The Courts are not bound by statistics however there must be reasonable consistency in sentences. A Magistrate or Judge should have regard to what has been done in other cases. In Green  HCA 45, the plurity judgement of French CJ, Kiefel and Creennan JJ stated:
“Equal Justice” embodies the norm expressed in the terms “equality before the law”. It is an aspect of the rule of law.
For Negligent Driving offenders
For second or subsequent offence
In NSW, a court can impose any of the following penalties for a Negligent Driving charge.
However, from the 24 September 2018 new penalty’s will be replacing the above. They are as follows:
Police withdrew proceedings for ‘negligent driving occasioning grievous bodily harm’ against our 21-year-old client from Parramatta after we made representations that the charge could not be sustained. The case involved our client, who was on his P Plates, allegedly failing to give way to another car at a roundabout and causing a collision, resulting in the driver sustaining a fractured leg and various other injuries. We argued successfully that the evidence suggested the other driver may have been travelling at excessive speed and thereby contributed to the collision. The charges were dropped, and our client kept his licence and remains conviction-free.
We are the experts in either beating or having criminal charges withdrawn AND/OR obtaining the least restrictive penalty available. This is because no matter which option you choose within our tailored Options at Law you will be dealing with experienced criminal lawyers who can make sure the evidence is not only obtained properly but also that your case is prepared and presented to the highest best practice standards possible. This is also done without breaking your pocket.
No matter which option at law you choose, National Criminal Lawyers can guarantee that a Senior Defence Lawyer will represent you. This means that with our over 25 years of Combined criminal law experience you will get the best result possible.
At National Criminal Lawyers we know that Criminal Law is a matter of Human Rights. For this reason, we take pride and passion in representing our clients. This pride and passion to assist those charged with an alleged or actual breach of the criminal law is to us a matter of righteous necessity and in that sense, you can always rest assured that National Criminal Lawyers are the best defenders of your rights. This true not only when the police have just simply got it wrong OR if they have got it right then we can speak with you and make sure you get you the best result available.
If you have been charged with any Negligent Driving offence our Team at National Criminal Lawyers are well versed and specialists in having charges either withdrawn and otherwise achieving favourable outcomes.
Please contact our office on 02 9893 1889 or visit www.nationalcriminallawyers.com.au for more information about your options.