Speeding: a severely penalized criminal offence

A person commits an offence when they adopt a behavior that is prohibited in the Criminal Code. Driving over the speed limit is one of many criminal offences recognized and penalized by law.

The Highway Safety Code identifies different types of speeding. Indeed, the code draws a distinction between speeding and excessive speeding. Even if the two sound similar, the penalties issued can greatly vary and have serious consequences for the accused and his entourage.

Discover the differences between these two types of criminal offences and what the penalties are.

Speeding and the Highway Safety Code

In Quebec’s Highway Safety Code, the authorized driving speed is indicated on road signs. A driver is therefore considered in excess as soon as the speed of his vehicle exceeds the legal limit displayed.

Speeding penalties

Speeding is considered a criminal offence and is inevitably punishable by law. Penalties issued vary according to the degree of seriousness of the offence, ranging from a fine to a driver’s licence suspension. In all cases, demerit points will be issued and remain on the accused’s driving record for 2 years.

In addition, it is important to emphasize that the fine is doubled when speeding is committed in a roadwork zone. The penalty is more severe to ensure better safety for workers and other road users.

Excessive speeding: an offence punishable under the Criminal Code

A person is considered guilty of excessive speeding when the speed of his vehicle significantly exceeds the authorized limit. Penalties for this type of offence are much more severe and can have a substantial impact on the accused.

In effect, the driver has his driver’s licence revoked immediately upon arrest. The suspension period can vary from 7 to 60 days depending on the severity of the offence. If this corresponds to a second offence, the authorities may also proceed to the immediate seizure of the vehicle.

In addition, a person who is guilty of an excessive speeding offence is given double the number of demerit points and a fine twice as high. His offence will remain in his driving record for 10 years instead of 2 and he will experience an increase in the cost of his driver’s licence.

Facing a speeding charge

Being charged with a speeding offence, whether excessive or normal, does not necessarily require the services of a criminal lawyer. However, a lawyer’s expertise is undeniably valuable when it comes to pleading your case in court. He will be able to defend you and assert your rights.

Do not hesitate to contact Me Bérard, a lawyer that specializes in the defence of criminal charges, to get all the help you need.

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