Infringements

Infringements

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Apply for cancellation/extension if unaware of infringement notice

Important changes from 1 July 2017

From 1 July 2017, the Infringements Act 2006 (Vic) will be changed as part of Victoria’s fines reform process, including new ‘social justice initiatives’ that will affect people experiencing vulnerability. Please be aware of these reforms in relation to any infringements and fines assistance that you are providing to your clients.

Justice Connect Homeless Law pro bono lawyers should read our further materials about the changes here (password needed), before doing any fines work after 1 July 2017. Please speak to your supervising lawyer, team leader or Homeless Law staff for more information.

Applying for cancellation if your client wasn't aware of the infringement notice 

If the relevant enforcement agency did not serve the infringement notice on your client personally, and your client was not aware until 14 days ago or less that he or she had been issued with an infringement notice, your client may apply to the Infringements Registrar for cancellation of the infringement notice pursuant to section 37 of the Infringements Act.  Note that if your client has an infringement notice for drink-driving, drug-driving or excessive speeding which resulted in the suspension or cancellation of his or her driver's licence, your client is not eligible to apply for cancellation of the notice but he or she can apply for an extension of time (see below).

An application can only be made within 14 days of your client becoming aware of the infringements and must be accompanied by a written statement setting out the grounds on which the cancellation is sought. The Infringements Registrar must then stay the operation of the infringement notice and refer the application to the Magistrates' Court for hearing and determination.

If the Magistrate is satisfied that your client was not aware of the infringement notice, the Magistrate must cancel the notice (see section 38 of the Infringements Act).  Although it is likely that the enforcement agencies will issue infringement notices for the fines again, applying for a cancellation would clear any of the enforcement costs that have been incurred and any enforcement order or warrant would be revoked.  If the infringement notice is issued again, the client would have the option to apply directly to the enforcement agency to review the decision to issue the notice.

Applying for extension of time if your client wasn't aware of a traffic-related infringement notice

If your client only became aware of a traffic-related fine (other than a notice for drink-driving, drug-driving or excessive speed offences) 14 days ago or less as it was not served personally on him or her, your client may apply to the Infringements Registrar to have an extension of time of 28 days to deal with the notice pursuant to section 67 of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic).  The application must be made within 14 days of becoming aware of the notice. 

For drink-driving, drug driving or excessive speed offences, your client can make the same application for an extension of time of 28 days to deal with the notice pursuant to section 89B of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic).