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If you have been charged with Drink Driving, a common concern for many motorists is whether they will go to jail for drink driving. This is a valid concern and one which requires an individual assessment of each specific case, if you would like to speak with one of our Specialist Drink Driving Solicitors, please call us on 0345 222 9955 or complete our Contact Form at the bottom of this page for a no obligation initial telephone assessment of your case.

Driving with Excess Alcohol

The offence of Drink Driving (Driving with Excess Alcohol) is committed if a person drives or attempts to drive a vehicle whilst over the legal limit. The offence is contained within Section 5(1)(a) of The Road Traffic Act 1988.

Drink Drive Legal Limit

A motorist will only face a prosecution for drink driving, if the proportion of alcohol in their body was over the legal limit, this can be measured in breath, blood or urine. When a person is arrested and taken to the Police Station, if the reading provided is below the legal limit, they will be released without charge.

The legal limits are:

Level of AlcoholEngland, Wales & Northern IrelandScotland
Micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath3522
Milligrammes per 100 millilitres of blood8050
Milligrammes per 100 millilitres of urine10767

The Magistrates’ Court Hearing for Drink Driving

If you have been charged with drink driving, you will have received a Charge Sheet, Court Summons or Postal Requisition and this will contain details of the Court you should attend, along with the date and time. It is crucial that you attend Court on time otherwise, you could be convicted in your absence or a Court warrant could be issued for your arrest. 

As soon as you are aware of when you are in Court, you should make arrangements to formally appoint an experienced driving offence lawyer to attend Court with you, this can in many circumstances improve your chances of avoiding a prison sentence.  

Prison Sentence

When a Drink Driving matter appears in Court, the Magistrates’ or District Judge have a range of powers available to them when imposing a sentence. This includes:

  • Imposing a driving ban of 12 – 60 months
  • Imposing a 6-month prison sentence
  • Imposing a fine of an unlimited amount
  • Imposing a Community Order (unpaid work requirement)

Whether the Court decides to impose a jail sentence for drink driving will depend upon the individual circumstances of the offence and the level of alcohol recorded by the Police. The higher the reading of alcohol in breath, blood or urine, the higher the likelihood the Court may impose a prison sentence.

On deciding whether to send a person to jail for drink driving, the Court will take into consideration the level of alcohol recorded, whether there are any previous convictions for drink driving and the aggravating / mitigating factors of the offence and the offender.


 Our Agreed Fees for Motoring Offence cases start from;

£1000 + VAT

Aggravating Features

If a Defendant facing sentence has previous similar convictions such as Failing to Provide a Specimen for Analysis or being Drunk in Charge, this will increase the likelihood of possibly receiving a prison sentence.

Aggravating features of the offence will also be taken into consideration, the more aggravating features present, the more serious the offence becomes and that increases the likelihood of the Court imposing a prison sentence.

Aggravating features usually include:

  • The offence being committed whilst on bail
  • Carrying passengers
  • If you were involved in an accident
  • Poor road or weather conditions
  • Evidence of an unacceptable standard of driving
  • High level of traffic or pedestrians in the vicinity
  • Injuries caused to others

Mitigating Features

If you are facing a serious drink driving charge, you should consider appointing expert legal representation in your corner so that you stand the best possible chance of avoiding a prison sentence. The Court takes a tough stance towards driving with excess alcohol and if the offence is serious and contains aggravating features, there is a risk of an immediate prison sentence being imposed when you attend Court.

Clients frequently instruct our solicitors and barristers to represent them in Courts throughout England and Wales to ‘mitigate’ on their behalf. This is when a person accepts, they are guilty but there are mitigating factors which the Court should be made aware of. Strong and compelling mitigation can often convince the Court to impose a Community Order of unpaid work as opposed to a prison sentence.

It is a misconception that attending Court without a lawyer in your corner will result in the Court being lenient, this is far from the truth and the reality is that if you attend Court and represent yourself you are attending Court grossly unprepared for what awaits.

Best Rated Driving Offence Solicitors

Due to our skill and expertise in successfully defending motorists throughout England & Wales, we are regarded as one of the Top Ranked Motoring Defence Law Firms in Birmingham and Milton Keynes.

Our solicitors are dedicated towards providing our clients with the best possible chance of a successful outcome and we frequently receive 5 Star Reviews and positive feedback from our clients on Google ReviewsTrustpilot and Yell.

Our Recent Cases

Exceptional Hardship:
Successful Application

We were instructed by Mr Machin to represent him at court for a exceptional hardship application to avoid a driving ban from a totting-up of points.

Trial Success

Mr Garratt received a Single Justice Procedure Notice (SJP) from Warwickshire Police for speeding, but was adamant he was not driving beyond the speed limit.

recent cases drink driving case study

Drink Driving:
Minimum Ban Imposed

Mr Singh appointed Kang & Co Solicitors  to represent him at his sentence hearing and to mitigate on his behalf after he was charged with drink driving


Request A Callback or Email from a Kang & Co Solicitor

Do you require a solicitor? Please don't hesitate to get in touch with us. Use our quick contact form below and a member of our experienced and professional team of solicitors will contact you as soon as possible to discuss your requirements and your options.


Our Offices

Birmingham Head Office

1 Victoria Square
B1 1BD

London Office

5 Chancery Lane

Milton Keynes Office

Exchange House
494 Midsummer Boulevard
Milton Keynes, MK9 2EA

Accreditations, Partnerships and Press

Our Competitively Priced Agreed Fees for Motoring Offences start from £1,000 + VAT

Our Competitively Priced Agreed Fees for Criminal Offence cases start from £1,500 + VAT

An exceedingly competent, professional and dedicated practice lead from the front by Manjinder Kang.

In my experience, it is often very difficult to find a professional organisation that truly delivers on their promise of expertise, quality of service, compassion and dedication to their client.

I would not hesitate in recommending Kang & Co Solicitors.  Mr. C Pilkington


Amazing service overall. I was impressed with how fast I had responses from emails with any queries or questions.

On the day of my meeting with Kang & Co all options were made very clear and the advice I was given provided the result I wanted!

I highly recommend Kang & Co.

Joseph McBrearty

Kang & Co Solicitors is a truly specialist high-end law firm providing legal advice and representation for all matters involving Criminal Law, Driving Offences, Transport Law, Pace Interviews, Regulatory Law and Licensing Law.

Our head office is located at 1 Victoria Square in Birmingham City Centre and we offer our services throughout England and Wales on a private fee-paying basis. We also have an office at 5 Chancery Lane in London and another office in central Milton Keynes. We are frequently instructed by individuals and businesses nationwide.

birmingham office lawyers

Birmingham Office

1 Victoria Square
West Midlands
B1 1BD

london office lawyers

London Office

5 Chancery Lane

milton keynes office lawyers

Milton Keynes Office

Exchange House
494 Midsummer Boulevard
Milton Keynes

Business Hours

Monday – Friday
09:00 – 17:00
Weekends/Bank Holidays

Meetings at our offices are by Appointment Only

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