Statutory Declarations and Applying to Reopen a Case

Have you been found guilty and convicted of a motoring offence while you were absent and unable to defend yourself? Do you feel that your conviction was based on a crucial error on the part of the courts?

Are you suffering with the legal consequences of this unjust verdict, and are now looking for ways to get this decision overturned?

Do you require legal advice and support from a team of solicitors with specialist experience in handling motoring offences, who can help you submit a statutory declaration to get the case reopened?

If so, call the experts at as quickly as possible. We have dealt with thousands of motoring offence cases, and the sooner you get in touch with us, the greater the chance you will have of getting your case reopened.

Call our expert solicitors today for free advice on how to proceed. Call us on 0345 241 1326, or complete our online contact form to request a call back at your convenience.

How Can We Help? is part of JMW Solicitors. The members of our team have more than 100 years of combined experience and have represented thousands of clients since 1978, making them the most experienced motoring offences team in the country.

Our solicitors are accredited by such respected industry bodies such as Chambers and the Legal 500, and can provide personalised guidance and support on all aspects of this legal process, including:

  • helping you deal with all the relevant paperwork, including the wording of the statutory declaration itself and how it should be submitted or presented at court
  • keeping you informed and educated about what needs to be done at every stage, including reminding you of imminent deadlines
  • representing you in court for the case and ensuring the statutory declaration is successful, allowing you to reopen the case

We have a strong track record of helping motorists in your position, with examples of past cases including:

  • helping a business owner convicted in their absence of failing to give information and speeding, successfully reopening the case to accept a guilty verdict on the original speeding offence. This resulted in the driver receiving three points and a small fine, rather than a six-month disqualification from driving
  • supporting a teacher convicted in their absence after they received no paperwork, due to the documents being sent to the incorrect address. The cases were discontinued

We attend courts across England and Wales and can take instructions by phone, email or in writing, ensuring our service is as accessible and convenient as possible.

Call us on 0345 241 1326 for a free initial consultation, and we will be able to offer more detailed estimates of the costs involved.

When Can I Apply for a Case to be Reopened?

Under Section 142 of the Magistrates Court Act 1980, magistrates have the authority to get a case reopened, but only under circumstances where doing so is deemed to serve the best interests of justice. Examples include:

  • Clear errors or mistakes being identified in the original ruling process
  • Essential steps having been missed out during the trial
  • The defendant having been found guilty in their absence, having been unable to attend the hearing through no fault of their own (for example, because they did not receive the prosecution notification)

If you feel that any of these circumstances apply to your case, it will be necessary to write to the relevant magistrates and outline the circumstances of the mistake via a statutory declaration.

How Can I Make a Statutory Declaration?

A statutory declaration is a legally-binding document used to make a formal statement of facts, which are true to the best of the knowledge of the person making the declaration. They need to be signed in the presence of a solicitor, commissioner for oaths or notary public.

The statutory declaration of your reasoning should ideally be made within 21 days of the date that you realised you had been convicted in your absence, as magistrates can refuse to allow you to make a statutory declaration beyond this point.

The decision to reopen the case is ultimately made at the magistrates’ discretion. If your application is accepted, you will receive a new hearing date.

Individuals seeking to reopen a motoring offence case should speak to a specialist solicitor, such as, as quickly as possible to give themselves the best chance of successfully reopening the case and defending themselves as effectively as possible.

Talk to Us

If you are looking to reopen a case via a statutory declaration, our experienced team of specialist motoring offence solicitors can help. Call us on 0345 241 1326 for a free phone consultation, or complete our online contact form to request a call back.

Get in touch now for your Consultation

Our Motoring Law Specialists pride themselves on providing the advice and support for your Motoring law issues, having over a century of combined experience.

If you need legal advice, get in touch today by calling 0345 646 0348 Alternatively, complete our online enquiry form .


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