Death by Dangerous Driving

At Cartwright King we understand that motoring mistakes can be made and that serious accidents can occur whilst driving which are not necessarily your fault. If you have been accused of causing death by dangerous driving, you could be faced with a lengthy prison sentence and a motoring ban. This is the most serious motoring offence and one that if proved against you almost always leads to a prison sentence. It is vital that you seek very early advice. We are available to represent you throughout the entire legal process and can assist wherever you are based.

Free Initial Telephone Consultation

Our team of highly skilled motoring solicitors are here to take the worry off your hands. We can provide an initial telephone consultation to see how we can assist in your case. Please call us on 0800 2800 880 or email

Dangerous driving and the law

When you are driving a vehicle, it is essential to adhere to the Highway Code and the law in general. If there is evidence that you have driven far below the standard expected by a competent and careful driver, you could be charged with dangerous driving. In deciding the matter, the court will look at all the circumstances and factors which aggravate the matter including:

  • Driving aggressively
  • Ignoring the speed limit
  • Racing
  • Undertaking other vehicles
  • Failing to stop for police
  • Being distracted by radio or communication device

What punishment could you face?

Death by Dangerous Driving

If your driving has caused the death of another person, then you have committed the offence of death by dangerous driving. In 2003 the maximum sentence for this was increased from 10 to 14 years, meaning that you could potentially be faced with a lengthy prison sentence, alongside a two year driving ban and a mandatory retake of the driving test to regain your licence.

There are two related offences:

  • Causing death by careless driving
  • Causing death by careless driving while under the influence of drugs or drink driving

You can receive a maximum prison sentence of 14 years with an unlimited fine, two year disqualification and extended retesting when applying for a new licence if you cause a death by dangerous driving or by careless driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs.  

If you are found to have caused death by careless driving alone, the sentences are less severe. The maximum custodial sentence is 5 years along with a mandatory one year driving disqualification or 3-11 penalty points.

In each case the prosecution must prove that you have in fact driven dangerously or carelessly and that it was a factor in the death of the deceased. Also, if you have been accused of driving carelessly whilst under the influence of drink or drugs then it must be proven that you were either over the legal limits or unfit to drive or that you refused to provide a specimen for analysis. 

Who are the DVLA? 

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) is the UK enforced organisation formed in 1965 that is responsible for maintaining the database of drivers and vehicles in Great Britain. The information that they attain help them improve road safety, reduce vehicle related crime, support environmental initiatives and limit vehicle tax evasion.

How can we help you?

Cartwright King are available to present your case in court and take into consideration all the factors surrounding your circumstances. You can be assured that you will receive the essential, high quality legal advice and representation that our solicitors have to offer.

Why Choose Us?

At Cartwright King, our solicitors understand the stress that being accused of causing a death by dangerous driving can cause and what the potential severe consequences can have on your family and your career. We are available to support you throughout the entire process, explaining the likely outcomes and fight on your behalf.

How to make contact

If you require any legal advice or if you would like a no obligation, free initial telephone discussion, then please call us on 0808 168 5550. Alternatively you can email the Motoring team on and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Our Motoring solicitors can provide advice across the country and are happy to meet at a time and location that suits you. We also have a network of offices We also have a network of offices in BirminghamBedfordBoltonDerbyLeedsLeicesterLondon TempleManchesterMiddlesbroughNorthamptonNottinghamSheffield and Worcester.

For further information please get in touch with our dedicated team.


View our Motoring Fees page here


You can always call us on 0808 168 5550 or email on


Let us know how we can help. Just provide a brief outline of your query.

Submit form
Read more
The Legal 500 - The Clients Guide to Law Firms