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Motoring Offences Fees - dealt with only in the magistrate's court


All rates detailed will attract additional VAT at the present rate of 20%. 

We ensure that the funding of your case is cost-efficient and transparent. We understand that the costs of your case will be important to you and that you receive a meaningful indication of how much you will need to pay. We will always endeavour to agree on costs in advance of any case once we have had an opportunity to assess the issues and the level of work and assistance required.

We will take time to agree on the costs with you by gaining an understanding of you, your case and the work involved. Under the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s Transparency Rules and to provide a good estimate of the range of fees you will pay (whether that be an agreed fee or a range of the costs involved in a typical case) if you were to instruct us, we have set out on our website a breakdown of our standard charges for this type of work. It is possible that there may be other costs that you may need to pay in addition to our fees and we aim to provide information about those. We aim to enable you to have a good understanding of what the overall costs may be.

You may also have the benefit of other sources of funding such as legal expenses insurance or funding through a trade union or other representative. Please do not hesitate to contact us to explore your options.

Platforms for meetings

We will always meet with you virtually unless it is not suitable for the case. If we have agreed to meet you in person, we will do so providing there are no health and safety risks.

Examples of Summary only motoring cases (cases only triable in the magistrate’s court)

  • Drink or drug driving cases
  • Failing to provide a specimen
  • No insurance
  • Without due care
  • Speeding
  • Failing to stop for the police
  • Disqualified driving
  • Taxi touting
  • No insurance
  • No licence
  • Driving whilst using a mobile phone

All our crime team members undertake this type of work. See our staff list. This will detail their experience and that of the supervisors. Cases are usually supervised by Umar Zeb and Lisa Nicol who head up the criminal department.

We do not work on a contingency fee basis i.e., ‘no win, no fee’ for any criminal legal issue or case. We will always give you our honest estimate when you instruct us and continue to provide cost updates throughout the case. At times we may need to work on an hourly rate basis. We will work as quickly as we can on your behalf as we are conscious that time is your money.

Types of motoring work we can do by fixed fee

Advance meeting Fixed Fee

Advance meeting pre- court proceedings advice on a fixed fee basis i.e. advice on speeding/totting/completion and return of documents to the police, PS interview.

If you require a meeting to discuss your case and the evidence against you before instruction to carry out substantive work such as making any representations or appearing in court, then we can agree on this.

At this meeting, we will assess the strength of the case and your potential defences. We will outline all likely penalties.

Option 1 Fixed fee (3 hours work)

Included in the fee

This option will involve up to 3 hours of meetings and preparation. This will include meeting with you for up to 2 hours on one occasion only plus the preparation for this meeting, which will likely require reading documents and/or follow-up advice. This can be in person or by Zoom to be agreed. The price for this option is a fixed fee of £750 plus VAT which in total is £900 including VAT.

This will include preparation for the meeting and preparation after the meeting if time remains within the 3-hour limit. 

Not Included in the fee

This does not include any other preparation or work or court cover. Experts, interpreters or translation costs are not included.

Option 2 Fixed fee (2 hours work)

Included in the fee

This option involves up to 2 hours of meetings and preparation. The meeting will last a maximum of 1 hour on one occasion and preparation will be carried out up to 1 hour. The price for these 2 hours is £500 plus VAT which in total is £600 including VAT. If appropriate we may agree to this shorter time fixed fee of up to 2 hours. This option is for less serious or less complicated cases where the meeting can occur by Zoom or telephone etc only. This will not be in person unless we agree to this.

Not included in the fee

This does not include any other preparation or work or court cover. Experts, interpreters or translation costs are not included.

Making Written Submissions or mitigation on your behalf

We can work to try and persuade the police/CPS against commencing court proceedings where possible. We will draft your mitigation for you. Representation at court for this discreet work is not included. We will meet with you, and we will take instructions from you and we will where possible analyse the case evidence before mitigating on your behalf to attempt to persuade the court not to impose a ban where the law permits. We will write a letter of representation or mitigation on your behalf. As indicated above Representation by us at court is not included - £1,000 plus VAT for up to 4 hours work and £1,500 plus VAT for up to 6 hours work covered, which is more suitable for complicated cases. We will assess each case and advise you. Sometimes the work involved may be more substantial and if this is the case we will advise you and agree fees. 

Included in the fee –

  • Reading evidence
  • Attending/preparation virtually or in person as agreed or necessary
  • Instructions from you
  • Advising you on your plea at court
  • Any defences you may have 
  • Advice on likely sentence and your mitigation
  • Drafting written submissions for you
  • We will undertake work which includes, letters, calls, and emails all charged as 6 minutes each unless greater time is incurred plus preparation and attendance up to the maximum number of hours agreed in the fixed fee with us.

Not included in the fee –

  • Any further work such as taking other statements
  • Attending court
  • Preparing the case any further
  • Instructing experts
  • Translation or interpreters costs
  • Incurring any expert fee or disbursements

Court Attendance for – Plea, sentencing, and exceptional hardship hearing (one hearing)

Not Guilty Trial preparation and attendance are not covered by this fee.

Representation at court by an advocate within the fee such as a solicitor from our firm or a barrister. We will meet with you in advance and take your instructions where necessary. We will collate your documents in support and prepare for the hearing. We will appear at court on your behalf and act for you at court for up to half a day. A member of our team will attend, or we will choose a suitably qualified barrister or solicitor to appear for you. From £1,000 plus VAT for up to 6 hours work and to £2,500 plus VAT for up to 10 hours work covered. The final fee will be agreed with you. 

Included in the fee -

  • Reading evidence
  • Taking your instructions or statement
  • Attending/preparation virtually or in person as agreed or necessary
  • Advice on likely sentence
  • Attendance and representation at the Magistrates Court on one occasion as agreed
  • Advising you on your plea at court and credit
  • Advising you on the strengths and weaknesses of your case
  • Advising you on available defences, and the likely prospect of success at trial if pursued
  • Advice on likely sentence and your mitigation
  • Advice on court costs on a guilty plea and following a trial
  • This is to include an experienced advocate or barrister to represent you at court for up to a half-day hearing. Most cases will not take longer than half a day of a lawyer's time including travel, awaiting, and representing you at court.
  • We will undertake work which includes letters, telephone calls, and emails which are all time charged at a minimum of 6 minutes each unless greater time is incurred plus preparation and attendance up to the maximum number of hours agreed in the fixed fee with us

Not included in the fee –

  • Any further work such as taking statements of others
  • Attending further court hearings or legal arguments that can arise in court, including adjourned sentencing hearings
  • Preparing the case any further
  • Incurring any expert fee or disbursements
  • Incurring and interpreters or translation fees
  • Preparation work which includes letters, calls, emails, preparation, and attendance beyond the maximum number of hours agreed in the fixed fee with us.
  • Not Guilty Plea trials any contested hearing or a Special Reasons Argument
  • Trial Preparation or Special Reasons Hearing
  • We will fully prepare your case for trial or a special reasons hearing where you have pleaded guilty. We will read and prepare all evidence served. We can take your instructions and all necessary statements from your witnesses where the fee agreed covers the work required. We will make representations to the CPS where appropriate to try and get them to drop the case before trial where the time agreed between us will permit such work to be carried out. We will deal with the court and apply for adjournments, when necessary, in writing but not by attendance at court separate to the hearing date you have paid for.

We will discuss the possible fees in advance and agree with you. It is not possible to accurately advise on expert fees until we know the nature and skill of the expert required.

Not Guilty Trial and Special Reasons not to Disqualify

From £2,500 plus VAT this will cover up to 10 hours of work and from £5,000 plus VAT for up to 20 hours of work in more complicated cases. If you have multiple or complicated witness issues, you are likely to require more time to carry out this work. If we estimate that we need to do more work, then we will advise you in advance and quote the fee.

Sometimes more work can arise at a later stage as the nature of the case against you can change as the prosecution serves additional evidence not disclosed earlier. The prosecution can delay cases, or the court can delay matters due to workload or other issues such as pandemics, ill health, or non-availability of court staff. Increasingly court buildings have safety or building works issues, and this delays cases which can increase your costs. This is applicable if we attend court, and the case is delayed and not heard on the day due to one of these issues or any other issue that can arise including the case being delayed because witnesses do not attend court. 

We will undertake work which includes, letters, telephone calls, and emails which are all time charged at a minimum of 6 minutes each unless greater time is incurred plus preparation and attendance up to the maximum number of hours agreed in the fixed fee with us

Included in the fee -

  • Reading evidence
  • Advising you on your plea at court and credit
  • Advising you on the strengths and weaknesses of your case
  • Advising you on available defences, and the likely prospect of success at trial if pursued
  • Advice on likely sentence
  • Taking your instructions or statement
  • Attending/preparation virtually or in person as agreed or necessary
  • Attendance and representation at the Magistrates Court on one occasion as agreed
  • Advice on court costs on a guilty plea and following a trial
  • We will deal with disclosure issues that arise during the case such as requesting CCTV, forensic reports, or other unserved material
  • We will provide a qualified advocate to represent you at trial

Not included in the Fee -

  • Specialist traffic offences expert
  • Interpreters or translation
  • Any further work or enquiries or preparation such as taking statements not covered within the fixed fee hours.
  • Hearings regarding disclosure/breach of bail / complex legal arguments heard at a separate hearing, any mention or pre-trial review by the court
  • Extensive enquiries tracing witnesses which we cannot do in the time agreed with us in the fixed fee agreed.
  • Attending further court hearings including adjourned sentencing hearings
  • Incurring any expert fee or disbursements
  • Preparation work which includes letters, calls, emails, and attendance beyond the maximum number of hours agreed in the fixed fee with us
  • Undertaking any work beyond the hours agreed in the fixed fee
  • Advocates or barristers for court hearings outside of our firm*

*Advocates or barristers for court hearings explained

We will always strive to instruct one of our excellent in-house lawyers to represent you at your court hearings, to keep costs low whilst ensuring that you receive a strong legal defence. However, where this is not possible, we will pay for an external barrister or advocate to represent you. On average, an external barrister or advocate will charge approximately 20% of the total fee to cover the court hearing aspect of the case. Thus, if you have paid us a fixed fee of £2,000 inclusive of VAT, it will cost us approximately £400 to instruct a barrister for you. In this case, there will be no further cost to you for a barrister or advocate outside of our firm to represent you.

However, instructing more specialist barristers or advocates outside of our firm, and instructing specific barristers of your choice, will normally attract higher costs plus VAT at the prevailing rate, which presently is 20%. As such, in these cases, 20% of the fixed fee paid to us will likely not be sufficient to cover the cost of the barrister or advocate representing you at court. If we determine that you require a more specialist advocate, or if you wish to instruct a specific

Additional hearings

If we have to attend additional hearings to adjourn your case or if the case is adjourned once we attend court, then each further hearing or trial will be from £1,000 plus VAT to £2,500 plus VAT and again this fee includes representation by an experienced advocate. If you require a specific advocate outside of our firm, then this could attract higher costs depending on their costs. Sometimes after a case is adjourned, we may be required to do more work than estimated as more evidence is served, or you may require more work on your defence and in such cases we will estimate for this work. This can affect the fees above. You may sometimes require us to make or oppose additional legal argument hearings for you. We will quote for these as they arise. This cost will depend on complexity.

Factors That Can Affect All Fixed Fee Cases

We always endeavour to ensure that our fees do not exceed those particularised above.

  • If you instruct us at late notice close to a hearing or in connection with multiple allegations
  • Complicated issues in the case or facts
  • The court dealing with your case is at a distant location, then there will be an increase to the fees quoted above
  • Having many witness enquiries or obtaining expert reports will complicate the case
  •  If the case becomes more complex because more documents need to be considered, then this will complicate the case.

What costs are not included in the fixed fee

The fee for any work agreed upon does not include:

  • The cost of instruction of any expert witnesses which we can only guide you on once we know more about the nature of the expert and availability
  • Interpreters or translation of document costs
  • Advance conferences with advocates or barristers other than at court on the day unless agreed in writing 
  • Disbursements some of which attract VAT such as alcohol reports, some interpreting agencies charge VAT whilst smaller agencies do not. Photocopying and expert reports such as psychiatric reports attract VAT
  • Barristers’ fees unless we have agreed to provide a barrister, and this will attract VAT
  • Travel costs. We will provide an estimate once we know the location of the court
  • Where the hours work agreed in the fixed fee are exceeded in which case additional fees must be agreed for additional work
  • Taking statements from any other witnesses or making enquiries and preparation where the fixed fee agreed will not allow that additional work. Reading further documents or evidence that are adduced by you or the prosecution which requires further analysis in which case we may have to agree on additional fees
  • Advice or assistance concerning any appeal

Potential additional expenses all cases

Most cases will not require additional cost. Potential expenses and disbursements are listed below, and some experts and professionals charge VAT and others do not if they are not registered for VAT.

  • Interpreters and translation fees from £25 plus VAT per hour if needed. It is not possible to predict the cost of these as this varies according to the particular circumstances
  • Court fees – we cannot estimate these, but they are unlikely to apply in most cases
  • Travel costs to the Court - there will be additional disbursements in respect of our mileage/travel expenses based upon a rate of £0.45 per mile or public transport plus VAT
  • If we need to stay overnight, then hotel accommodation may be chargeable (amounts subject to VAT), but we would try and avoid this where possible
  • Psychiatric reports can cost from £500 plus VAT to £5,000 plus VAT or on very rare occasions a higher amount 
  • Alcohol reports cost from £500 plus VAT to £2,500 plus VAT. More complicated reports will cost more
  • Medical experts can cost from £500 plus VAT to £5,000 plus VAT

VAT is charged at 20%

The Key stages of your case depend on you having advised us correctly about the next hearing and you also have a date for your hearing -

  1. You will provide instructions to us or a statement
  2. We will consider the evidence and advise you including on your plea at court
  3. We will seek additional disclosure from the prosecution
  4. We can take any other witness statements if necessary (this could have an additional cost depending on the complexity of the case and whether it can be covered in the hours agreed)
  5. We will explain the court procedure so you will know what to expect on the day of your hearing, and the sentencing options available to the court
  6. We arrange any further preparatory work; obtain instructions from you and answer queries you have
  7. We will instruct experts and incur disbursements if you agree the associated fees

Time Scales

  • The actual timescale of when your hearing will take place depends on the court listing for that day
  • Meeting you at Court
  • When we agree to attend court, we will meet with you before going into the court
  • We will discuss the outcome achieved with you. If our opinion is required on appeal, we will agree costs.

Fixed fees non-refundable

Where we have not agreed hourly rates for work, we will represent you on a fixed fee basis, you are obligated to pay us the full amount that we have agreed, irrespective of whether the actual matter goes ahead, or the work required is less than originally quoted for. For example, we agree to do up to 3 hours work but the case concludes at 2.5 hours work. In the majority of matters, fixed fee agreements work out lower overall than a high hourly rate. This fixed fee is non-refundable in the event less work is undertaken, or if the case does not proceed, as we are working on lower hourly rates. You can, if you wish, agree in advance in writing to pay on an hourly rate basis which is set out below.

Time Estimate of whole case from start

How long a case takes depends on the amount of work involved. A criminal case can often end up taking quite a different shape from that envisaged at the time when it starts. Accordingly, it can be difficult at this early stage to give you an accurate prediction of the time it will take to conclude. Time estimates vary from court to court and are dependent on local problems with staff, increase in crime in an area or even building works at court at times. Routine cases can take from 3 to 6 months but sometimes as long as 6 to 12 months. 

Based on our vast experience, we would expect matters to generally follow the below timetable: Police Station Case 3-6 Months (although more serious cases can take longer than 12 months) Magistrates Court (Guilty Plea) 1-2 Months Magistrates Court (Not Guilty Plea) 3-6 Months Crown Court (General Cases) 3-12 Months Crown Court (Serious Cases) Up to 24 Months’ Time frames change based on the adherence of all parties to timetables and attendance of witnesses and court time available. As matters progress, we should be in a better position to advise you of the likely timeframe.

Fees for court attendance are estimated on half a day case

In cases where a case is dealt with at a single hearing the whole case is usually completed on that day. However, each case is different, and we cannot provide a precise timescale of how long each key stage will take or when hearings will take place, as this depends on many factors such as the complexity of the matter and court listings.  

Payment on Account

It is our usual practice to ask clients to make a payment on account of anticipated costs and disbursements. We will normally ask for full payment in advance and notify you. We shall deliver bills to you at regular intervals for work carried out during the conduct of this case. Please see our terms and conditions of business /private client document for more information when you decide to receive a formal quote from us.

Disbursements and expert reports/Barristers

If your case requires an expert, we will advise you as soon as possible so that you can decide on whether you would like us to instruct an expert on your behalf to produce a report, attend Court and give evidence. Expert fees are not included within the agreed fee and are considered as a disbursement. The cost for an expert depends on the type of expert required, the nature of the report and the experience of the expert. Other disbursements can be copying costs, medical reports/notes specifically to assist with your case.

If you require a named barrister and not an advocate that we have chosen as available within the fees, this can increase the costs and you will have to pay for the cost and any associated work such as additional meetings with the barrister, us, and you.

Our Travel costs

Where the court is distant to us then we will ask you to pay our reasonable travel fares for which we will estimate in advance and agree with you.

More complex cases

Sometimes, if you are facing a very serious allegation with serious consequences or if the case is extremely complex then we will discuss with you in advance acting on an hourly rate basis.

We can offer hourly rates depending on the complexity of each case.

  • Partner from £400 per hour.
  • Solicitor from £300 per hour.
  • Trainee/paralegal from £200 per hour.
  • Letters, calls, and emails are charged at 1/10 of the hourly rate.

We will give you an estimate in good faith on the number of hours your case is likely to require. This estimate can be based on the entire case or by each stage of the case (pretrial, preparation and trial, sentences).

All rates detailed will attract additional VAT at 20%.


A separate fee has to be agreed for any appeals and necessary work that will have to be carried out.

Can I recover any of my private fees?

Where a defendant is successful (i.e., he is not convicted of the offence(s) he faces) he can apply for reimbursement of his defence costs.  This is known as a Defendant’s Costs Order. If successful, the costs are paid from public funds. The rules state that where a defendant is successful ‘A defendant’s costs order should normally be made unless there are positive reasons for not doing so, for example, where the defendant’s own conduct has brought suspicion on himself and has misled the prosecution into thinking that the case against him was stronger than it was.’ Where a defendant faces multiple charges and is convicted of some but not others, the court can still award costs in relation to those matters that were not proved.

The sting in the tail here is that, even if the application is successful, the costs that can be recovered are limited to legal fees and these fees, in turn, are capped at Legal Aid rates. For this reason, it is extremely unusual for an acquitted defendant who has been paying privately for his defence to recover the costs of successfully defending himself, let alone for his lost earnings or otherwise for time spent preparing his case. In addition, only individuals (as opposed to companies and other organisations) can recover these limited defence costs in the Crown Court and Magistrates’ Court.

Finally, to be able to receive defence costs in the crown court, the defendant must have applied for legal aid, and then be determined to be ineligible to receive it. That is right - without a determination of ineligibility for legal aid, no costs can be recovered in the event of an acquittal. The recoverable costs will be less than 20% in most cases.

Fees recoverable in respect of work done by advocates in the Crown Court will not exceed the fees set out in the relevant cost’s rules and regulations. If you require more details, please ask us.



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Why choose JD Spicer Zeb?

  • 1000's of Cases Dropped
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  • 100's of Years Combined Experience
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Recent Cases

There is limited recourse for you if you are falsely accused. Click a selection of the cases we have covered. The best thing you can do is to instruct an excellent solicitor from the outset.

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How can we help?

Common questions

We always work with the most experienced and best leading UK barristers, KCs (Kings Counsel). We cover all criminal cases 24/7 at the police station and court. Offices in London, Birmingham, and Manchester cover cases across England and Wales. We can offer Legal Aid and affordable Private fee agreements. We can see you the same day, including virtually. Our Senior Partners supervise all of our cases.

How quickly do you respond?

We respond quickly even during out of hours. We do not get our work by paying for online adverts but based on the fact that few criminal law firms can match our 45 years of experience. Most of our cases are still from word-of-mouth recommendations from satisfied clients. We are called daily by dissatisfied clients from firms with less experience than us. We respond very quickly to new enquiries. We know what clients seek and so we update clients rapidly.

Can you get cases dropped?

Yes, read about the recent cases we've helped our clients with here.

We always keep you updated and give straightforward advice. We will get cases dropped early where the case is weak or should not be prosecuted. We will be upfront with you about where you can benefit from a good result with an early guilty plea, such as a discount on your sentence. As we work on cases across all levels with clients from all walks of life, we are excellent at giving clear, spot-on advice. As an established firm, we can allocate a whole team to your case often at short notice to secure evidence to minimise the damage to you. 

Have you won any awards?


"JD Spicer Zeb demonstrated a clear commitment to client service through their work with vulnerable and diverse individuals in what can be severely traumatic circumstances".

Do you offer free consultations?

Where it is possible, we aim to provide an initial consultation to you. If we can speak to you, we can if required inform you about  –

  • Whether we can take the case on and our relevant experience.
  • Public and private funding benefits.
  • Assistance in applying for legal aid where we are likely to accept instructions.
  • An outline of options in police interview only. We will not advise you on which option to adopt.
  • Providing our free written guide explaining the police station process.
  • The gravity of routine and day-to-day offences you face.
  • Consequences of not attending the court or police station.
  • Consequences of interfering with any witnesses.
  • Retaining any evidence in support of your case.
  • If possible an outline of the elements of the offence that the police or CPS must prove.
  • This consultation will normally be by telephone or email and will only be for as long as we deem necessary to establish if we can act for you. If we cannot usefully give you any advice in this manner then we will not continue with the consultation. We will not discuss the case in depth for you to be able to decide on your plea or any significant aspect of the case, as this cannot be undertaken informally.
  • Referring you, if possible, to other firms for matters out of our specialism or if we cannot help.

Consultations do not apply to the following cases –

  • If we do not intend to take the case on.
  • Road Traffic cases, drink driving, drug driving, driving bans, speeding, no insurance, mobile phone use, points etc.
  • In all cases where we do not have the capacity to take your case or the availability of suitably qualified staff to provide an initial free consultation. This is applicable in all cases but especially where a more senior lawyer is required because of your personal needs or the complexity of the case.
  • Harassment/stalking/ coercive behaviour/malicious communications or road traffic cases and most sensitive cases. These cases are often too complicated to assess in short consultations.
  • The locations concerned may be too distant to represent you adequately or it may not be cost-effective for you or us.
  • The case is too complicated to assess or raises various charges or facts, complexity, or history to be considered informally or in a short consultation.
  • In most Legal aid transfers where legal aid is granted to another firm except in very grave cases, we may assess the case and merits for a transfer.
  • If your relationship has broken down with your existing solicitor or several solicitors.
  • If you have been released under investigation and have already had a police station attendance. 
  • If you hold legal aid with another firm and seek a second opinion.
  • If you are calling on behalf of the client as a friend or family member unless you have full authority and full facts.
  • To businesses.
  • Advising whether you were given good advice by your other solicitor.
  • Whether to decide to plead guilty or not guilty.
  • Whether you have an arguable defence in law or factually complicated defences.
  • Any advice you have had after your first court appearance.
  • Any advice on appeal on conviction or sentence.
  • If we feel we are unable to communicate with you.
  • If we are likely to be conflicted or breach our professional rules.

How can we help?