Breach of Covid-19 Regulations

Are you facing a fine or criminal prosecution for breaching Covid-19/Coronavirus restrictions? Our expert criminal defence solicitors in Bournemouth can help.

The Government has brought in many new laws to deal with Covid-19, such as ordering people to stay at home, forcing pubs and restaurants to close early, and making people wear masks and face coverings.

While restrictions were simple at first – a nationwide lockdown that affected everyone the same – the rules have changed many times and are now different depending on where you live. This means the rules have become very difficult to follow.

If you’re facing legal action for allegedly breaching Covid-19 rules, get in touch with our criminal defence solicitors in Bournemouth, Dorset for advice. We can provide advice if you have been given a fine, travel to the police station to help if you have been arrested, or represent you at any court hearings.

Give us a call on 01202 552777 or email mail@renshawderrick.co.uk.

How are Covid-19 restrictions enforced?

The police and other authorities have been given powers to enforce Covid-19 restrictions through various methods, such as:

  • Prohibition Notices – a notice telling you to stop breaching restrictions
  • Fixed Penalty Notices – a type of fine that the police can give you without prosecuting you and taking you to court. The current fines can go up to £10,000

Where a person or business does not stop breaching restrictions, they may be arrested and prosecuted in court. The court is allowed to impose an unlimited fine and the person will also get a criminal record.

Thousands of individuals and businesses have already faced legal action for breaching Covid-19 restrictions. If you have been accused of breaching Covid-19 regulations, get in touch with us for advice before you are faced with prosecution and a criminal record.

How our criminal defence solicitors can help

Our specialist criminal defence team includes police station representatives, duty solicitors and lawyers who can represent you in court. If you have been accused of breaching Covid-19 restrictions, we can:

Help you challenge a Fixed Penalty Notice

It is important to contact us as soon as possible after receiving the Notice otherwise it may not be possible to challenge it.

Represent you at the police station

If you or someone you know is arrested for a breaching a Covid-19 rule, our specially trained police station representatives can travel at short notice to represent you. We can be by your side during interviews and advise you on what to say.

You are entitled to free legal advice at the police station. Do not answer the police’s questions until we have arrived to advise you because anything you say could be used as evidence against you.

Visit our Police Station page for more information.

Represent you in court

If you are facing prosecution for breaching a Covid-19 regulation, we can represent you at any court hearings, giving you the best possible chance of achieving a positive result, such as a lower fine.

What breaches of Covid-19 restrictions can you be fined and prosecuted for?

Not complying with local restrictions

From 12 October, the Government changed the regulations to introduce three Covid alert levels: medium, high, and very high. Restrictions in your local area will vary depending on the level of alert. For example, if you live in a high alert area, you are not allowed to socialise indoors with anyone outside your household or support bubble.

If you breach local lockdown restrictions, you can be fined. In England, people over age 18 can be fined £200 for a first offence (lowered to £100 if you pay within 14 days). After the first offence, if you are caught breaching restrictions again, the fine will double up for each offence up to a maximum of £6,400. For example, the fine for your second offence will be £400. The fine for your third offence will be £800 etc.

For illegal gatherings over 30 people, the maximum fine is £10,000.

Failure to self-isolate due to Covid-19 symptoms

If you:

  • Have symptoms that may be Covid-19
  • Have received a positive Covid-19 test result
  • Live with people who have Covid-19 symptoms or have received a positive test result
  • Have been told by NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate

Then you will be required to self-isolate for a certain number of days or until you (and anyone else in your household who had symptoms) receive a negative test result. If you live in England, you can find the Government guidance on how long to self-isolate here.

If you test positive for Covid-19 or are contacted by NHS Test and Trace and you do not self-isolate, you could get a fine of at least £1,000 and up to £10,000.

Failure to self-isolate after returning from abroad

You may have to legally self-isolate for 14 days if you come back to the UK from certain countries. This means that as soon as you arrive back in the UK, you must go straight home and not leave again until 14 days have passed. You may also have to provide contact details when you arrive back in the UK.

You only need to self-isolate after returning from certain countries – referred to as ‘non-exempt countries’. If you live in England, read the Government guidance on self-isolating after returning from abroad here.

If you do not self-isolate, you could receive a fine of at least £1,000 and up to £10,000 for repeat offending. If you do not provide contact details when required, you could receive a fine of up to £3,200.

Failure to wear a face covering when required

In England, you have to wear a face covering (a mask) when in some indoor places, such as:

  • On public transport
  • In taxis
  • At airports and train stations
  • In shops
  • At the cinema

There are some exceptions, for example, if your children are under 11, they do not have to wear a mask. If you have certain health conditions you may also be exempt. For more information, read the Government guidance on when to wear a mask here.

The police can issue fines of £200 if you do not wear a mask (reduced to £100 if paid within 14 days). For repeat offences, this fine will double up to a maximum of £6,400 with no discount if paid within 14 days. For example, for the second offence, the fine will be £400. For the third offence, the fine will be £800. And so on.

Other Covid-19 related offences

We can also provide advice about any other criminal offence related to Covid-19, including:

Fraud

We can provide advice in relation to all kinds of fraud offence relating to Covid-19, including:

Assaults

Assaults that involve the spread of Covid-19, such as spitting or coughing, are being severely punished.

If you have been accused of an assault offence, from common assault to grievous bodily harm, we can provide assistance at every stage of the process, from advice at the police station to representing you during any court hearings.

Get in touch with our solicitors in Bournemouth, Dorset for advice about Covid-19 related offences

If you’re facing legal action for allegedly breaching Covid-19 rules, get in touch with our criminal defence solicitors in Bournemouth, Dorset for advice. We can provide advice if you have been given a fine, travel to the police station to help if you have been arrested, or represent you at any court hearings.

Give us a call on 01202 552777 or email mail@renshawderrick.co.uk.