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Drink or Drug Driving Allegation After Being Taken to Hospital

Drink or Drug Driving Allegation After Being Taken to Hospital


If you are suspected of committing an offence the police may require you to give a sample that they can analyse for alcohol/drug content. Depending on the circumstances (i.e. if you were involved in an accident) this may mean that the requirement for the sample is made whilst you are a patient in hospital.


If you provide a sample it will likely be blood or urine and the principles of their respective case-types will still apply so we would urge you to review that page in addition to this one.


Having been admitted as a patient in hospital however provides suspects with an additional level of legal “protection” and the prosecution find these cases much more difficult to prove.


As a result of this, I have never had a single client convicted at trial under these circumstances and we would urge you to contact us to discuss you case in more detail.


It may be that you have been bailed back to the police station pending the results of the police analysis however you should not delay in seeking advice as knowing your options at the earliest opportunity can often have a significant impact upon the end-result. Not only could this make a huge different to the end result in your case but, you will hopefully find that it puts some of your concerns to rest and makes you feel better about the position you have found yourself in.


It is important that you realise from the outset that whilst you may have provided a sample that was above the limit, this does not always mean that you can (or should) be convicted of drink driving!


We provide free initial telephone advice and would be happy to help so please contact us on 020 7923 4020 to discuss.


You may have provided a sample of blood or urine that, when analysed, tested positive for alcohol above the prescribed limit. This is called the “evidential sample” and is the evidence that will be used against you to try and prove that you were over the prescribed limit of alcohol.


Alternatively, you may currently be on bail waiting for the results of your sample’s analysis and not yet formally charged.


Most motorists who approach us assume that they have only one option – to plead guilty. It is understandable to assume that you must be guilty if you have provided a positive test however this is not always the case. As specialists in motor law, there are a number of unique strategies and techniques that enable us to successfully defend you and we urge you to contact us so we can explain your options in detail. Being charged with this offence can be an intimidating process and we want you to be able to make informed decisions on how best to proceed with your case.


Why Instruct Duncan Lewis Solicitors?


The vast majority of our clients walking away from court with their licence intact.


Road Traffic Law is a niche and specialised area of criminal law. There are only a handful of firms with genuine expertise in this area. If you instruct us to help you, we rigorously scrutinise every aspect of your case which will include the following:


  • What procedure did the police conduct with you whilst in custody? It is a strict and rigid procedure that the officers must follow and certain breaches are serious enough to result n you being found not guilty of the charge.
  • How and why was the blood or urine sample taken? There are limited circumstances under which an officer can legally require you to provide such a sample
  • What happened to the sample after its donation? How was it stored? What method was used to analyse it? There are all questions that need to be asked and often shed light onto breaches or flaws that result in an acquittal.
  • For the prosecution to secure a conviction, they must be able to prove that you are guilty beyond reasonable doubt and the results from the breath test are just one aspect of the case against you. Is the rest of the evidence strong enough to convince the court of your guilt? Many non-specialist lawyers are unaware of the technical defences that may exist in a case and we are confident that if you do have a defence, we will be able to find it.
  • The Prosecution have certain obligations that they must satisfy when preparing a case and we often see instances where they fail to do this. It is one of your basic legal rights to have the benefit of a fair trial and we have successfully argued that failings of the Prosecution prevent you from enjoying this right which results in the case against you being dismissed.
  • Whether special reasons apply


A non-motor law specialist would (in most cases) not know the various possible defences that may be available and advise you to plead guilty. This is why we would strongly recommend contacting us on 020 7923 4020 even if you have spoken to non-specialists to ensure you get the most accurate advice.


Potential Penalties and Consequences


Drink or Drug driving is one of the more serious motoring offences. The courts have little discretion and must impose a minimum disqualification period of 12 months but in more serious cases or if you are a repeat offender, then disqualifications can be as long as 5 years and you may also be at risk of a prison sentence or community order. You can find out more about the factors that the court consider when imposing penalties here.


There is also a Level 5 (unlimited) fine attached to this offence


A drug driving conviction will go onto your record as a criminal one but there are more far reaching consequences that are not immediately apparent such as:


  • A negative impact upon your chosen career or employment
  • Adverse effect upon your freedom to travel to certain countries
  • Significantly increase the costs of your vehicle insurance for at least the next 4 years
  • The social stigma attached to those who are ultimately convicted of drink driving


We Can Help Save Your Licence


Of all motoring offences, drug driving is one of the more serious and carries significant penalties upon conviction. If you are dependent upon your licence then a lengthy driving ban may be a daunting prospect with long term ramifications. Our lawyers understand the consequences this type of conviction can have and help motorists save their licence on a daily basis. We are here to listen and understand your case without judgement.


If the police provided you with your own sample of blood or urine to take home with you, we strongly recommend having this sent to be analysed independently. Whilst there are countless laboratories nationwide that can do this for you we would urge you to use an approved analyst, a list of which can be found on the Royal Society of Chemistry website here


How Much Does it Cost


The costs of representation will largely depend upon whether you decide to plead guilty or not guilty.


Your first court date will be when you must attend and confirm whether you are pleading “guilty” or “not guilty”.


If you plead guilty to the charge then in most cases only one hearing is required and we can agree a fixed fee. If you plead not guilty, then it may be several months before your trial date and the fees incurred will be influenced by:


  • How complex the case is; and
  • The number of hearings involved/duration of the proceedings


For more detail about the fee structure and payment options contact us on 020 7923 4020 to discuss your case in more detail.


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