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Road Traffic driving offences, guilty plea – single hearing

Your solicitor will be Michael Gupwell.  Michael is an experienced court advocate with Higher Rights of audience. Full details of his experience and qualifications are included on his Profile.

Michael’s hourly rate is £265 + VAT (£318). We do not do any work under the legal aid scheme.

Road Traffic guilty plea cases dealt with at a single court hearing take, on average, about 3 hours of a solicitor’s time. 3 hours of Michael’s time would cost £954, including VAT. As this is an average only, sometimes the case will take less than 3 hours and sometimes the case will take a little longer. We therefore feel that a fixed fee is not appropriate. However, we will always give you a more accurate estimate at the beginning of your matter based on the particular circumstances of your case.

The 3 hour estimate for our costs includes:

  • 2 hours attendance/preparation, including:
  • Considering the evidence
  • Taking your instructions
  • Providing advice on your likely sentence
  • 1 hour attendance and representation at a single hearing at a local Magistrates Court

The fee does not include:

  • The instruction of any expert witnesses or their fees
  • Taking statements from any witnesses
  • Advice and assistance in relation to a special reasons or exceptional hardship hearing to try to avoid you losing your driving licence
  • Advice or assistance in relation to any appeal against the level of the sentence
  • Travelling time to a court outside Bristol
  • Attendance at any later adjourned hearing date, for example when sentence is deferred for reports to be prepared.

The key stages of your matter are based on the presumption that you have entered or will enter a guilty plea and have a date for your hearing and include:

  • Meeting with your solicitor to provide instructions on what happened
  • Obtaining and considering initial evidence and any other evidence and providing advice
  • Explaining the court procedure to you so that you know what to expect on the day of your hearing and the sentencing options available to the court
  • Conducting any further preparatory work, obtaining further instructions from you, if necessary, and answering any follow up queries you have
  • Attending court on the day of the hearing and meeting with you to discuss any final points before going into court. While much of the time at court can include waiting, we usually anticipate being at court for up to half a day
  • Discussing the outcome with you. If advice is required in relation to an appeal against the level of the sentence, this will carry an additional cost.

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    February 2021: Covid-19 arrangements

    Wards Solicitors remains open for business during the national lockdown and we are taking on new cases.  We are available for video call and telephone meetings but cannot currently offer face to face meetings with clients except in some specific emergency situations and at court hearings.

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