There are many offences to cover the situation where a person dies as a result of another’s driving or use of a vehicle on a road. These include:
- Murder and Manslaughter
- Gross Negligence Manslaughter
- Corporate Manslaughter
- Causing death by Dangerous Driving
- Causing death by Careless or Inconsiderate Driving
- Causing death by careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs
- Causing death by driving while unlicensed, disqualified or uninsured
The first two examples will come as a surprise to most. They will be used, usually, if the vehicle is used as a weapon ie driven at a victim deliberately to cause serious harm or to kill. Corporate manslaughter is there to catch those companies whose attitude to road safety is so bad as to warrant such an allegation although usually the prosecutors would prefer to prosecute individuals if such could be identified.
The last 4 examples are more clearly identified with road traffic law and each one will not only carry imprisonment but a conviction is usually met with imprisonment. In the case of dangerous driving the sanction of a significant term of imprisonment may make a lot of sense as the conviction needs a person to have driven in a dangerous fashion. However, the definition of careless driving catches very many people who do not intend to drive in this way and cannot be expected to have realised they have done so. The careless driving may be momentary, over a very short time and distance. That would not matter, the driver is caught by the definition and is facing a gaol term. These are cases where the input by experts at an early stage may make all the difference between prison or some other disposal following a conviction.
There is often a great deal of research and preparation to be carried out for those facing these offences. The experts will know where time and effort should be spent to prepare matters as early and quickly as possible and when it might be sensible to make an early approach to a prosecutor to seek to resole matters as early as possible on the best terms. We bear in mind the impact on all parties of a sudden death and especially where (as is often the case) the deceased is known to or a relative of the driver.
Contact Daniel Bonich to discuss your needs and agree a fee structure to deal with this.