H21 PNLD code - is representation a good idea?


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Hi, my husband was arrested for blowing 126 micro grams/100 millilitres breath after crashing into a parked van (his car was a write off not sure about the van). He has to attend magistrates court this Friday but I’m not sure we can afford the solicitors fees (we’ve had an estimate of up to £2,000 for representation in court which is steeper than I’d imagined).

Bit of background, hubby has struggled with mental health and drinks to forget. He has been receiving treatment from a local alcohol help service (who are writing him a letter for the court) and occasional mental health care, recently took himself off antidepressants which seems to have led to mental dip. He drank with the intention of committing suicide but hit a parked van instead.

We’re in a tight situation as my wage is high enough to support our bills and give just enough money for food and transport. But not low enough for any other support and we now have lost a fair amount of money each month. He has also lost his job as a result as he was a temp and had to drive 45 minutes to reach it.

I know his sentence will be quite hefty as it was serious, I’m struggling to decide if paying the solicitor fee will make things better as he’ll no doubt have a high fine as well as the ban and poss community service. Not sure we can afford all of it. Any advice welcome.

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A reading of 126µg of alcohol per 100ml of breath is sufficient to put your husband at risk of having a prison sentence imposed. In those circumstances, depending on financial circumstances, legal aid may be granted. It m ay be worth speaking with a local legal aid solicitor to have them assess his eligibility for representation on that basis.

It seems that there are various issues surrounding his personal circumstances that need to be addressed as part of the mitigation and he would be best served by being represented; be that privately paid or otherwise. You can speak with one of our representatives for more information, on
0333 009 3824