How do driving offence codes affect your insurance?

Share

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Google plus Email

Speeding penalties could cost you more on your car insurance. Find out how motoring conviction codes affect your driving licence.

Motoring conviction codes, fixed penalty notices, endorsements - lots of different words which usually mean the same thing, penalty points on your driving licence.

Speed camera sign

Over 2.9 million UK full driving licence holders had penalty points on their licence between March 2013 and March 2014, according to figures from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA).

Sometimes the problem stems from the fact lots of drivers don't know their SP30s (exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road) from their SP50s (exceeding speed limit on a motorway), which is why we've done the leg work for you. We give you the lowdown on speeding penalties and driving without insurance and how they affect you and your car insurance.

Penalty points and the police

Before the penalty points system was introduced, motorists were simply fined or banned if they were caught breaking the rules of the road. The introduction of the new system in 1988 was part of an attempt to provide the Courts with another method of punishing repeat offenders.

The new system allows Courts to endorse a person's driving licence with points; the number of points a driver receives depends on the severity of the offence. Having a points system that can be monitored means the effects of the punishments can be measured and motorists who continue to offend could face a driving ban.

From Notice of Intended Prosecution to points

The police are responsible for handing out penalty points to drivers, but how you get the points depends on the offence itself. Speeding penalty points, for example, could come from a fixed camera, a parked speed van, an officer with a speed gun or you may just be pulled over by a police officer.

You may be given a verbal warning if you're pulled over, or potentially an on-the-spot fine and an endorsement if you have both parts of your licence with you. If you don't have both when you're pulled over you'll be required to produce your licence to the police within 7 days to have the points added.

If you're caught speeding by a camera you'll be sent a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) which will explain the offence. You'll need to reply within 28 days, sending back the name and details of the person driving at the time.

Penalty points and your driving licence

Most types of penalty points, things like SP30s (speeding on a public road) and CU80s (using your mobile phone) are on the licence for 4 years. SP30s and CU80s are two of the most common driving offence codes held by drivers in the UK, with over a million drivers having at least one of them between March 2013 and March 2014.

However, some offences could remain on your licence for up to 11 years because of their severity:

  • Drink driving or drug driving, offence codes which start DR
  • Offence codes CD40 to CD70, causing death by careless driving, whether due to alcohol or drugs

Would all result in points on your licence for 11 years.

How do motoring conviction codes affect your car insurance?

When starting a new car insurance policy you should be honest about any previous claims or motoring offences as it could affect your cover.

A member of Admiral's pricing team said:

"It's important to disclose all the relevant facts about previous motoring offences, penalty points, speed awareness courses/driver improvement courses etc. We aim to protect our customers by ensuring their policy information is correct before an accident occurs; this allows the Claims team to look to pay out a claim in full rather than the potential of not paying the claim, or paying a lower amount.

"Our claims statistics have proven that customers with penalty points, motoring offences or who've taken speed awareness courses/driver improvement courses, in the last 5 years, have more driving incidents and make more claims. This is why we need to know about them before offering a quote."

The 5 most common motoring convictions for men

  Conviction code Total
1 SP30
Exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road
641,493
2 SP50
Exceeding speed limit on a motorway
102,221
3 IN10
Using a vehicle uninsured against third party risks
98,469
4 CU80
Breach of requirements as to control of the vehicle, mobile telephone etc
86,043
5 DR10
Driving or attempting to drive with alcohol level above limit
50,511

5 most common motoring convictions for women:

  Conviction code Total
1 SP30
Exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road
290,322
2 SP50
Exceeding speed limit on a motorway
28,992
3 CU80
Breach of requirements as to control of the vehicle, mobile telephone etc
24,030
4 TS10
Failing to comply with traffic light signals
22,186
5 IN10
Using a vehicle uninsured against third party risks
20,363

Motoring conviction codes: the full list

For a full run down of conviction codes and what they stand for, visit the Gov.uk website for the detailed list.

Share with your friends

Tell us what you think