Tips for Contesting a Fine in NSW
You have received a fine, but you think it has been a mistake or there were reasons for your offending. How do you contest it? Read our guide to find out.
Have you ever received a fine and don’t think it was warranted? This may range from a speeding fine, to running a red light or using your mobile phone while driving. In NSW, there are processes set up to contest a fine. Further, there are also key factors the court considers as to whether they will accept a fine review. Read our guide to uncover some tips for contesting a fine in New South Wales.
How To Request a Review
So you have received a fine from police and you don’t agree with their decision, so what’s next? You can request Revenue NSW to review the fine up until the due date stated on the penalty notice. To be eligible to request a review, there must either be a mistake in the fine or there were exceptional circumstances that led to the offence. You can customise our Parking Fine Appeal Letter for free.
To process the review, you should ensure you have proof of your identity on hand. You will also need the penalty notice number, date the offence took place and any documentation to support your argument. Once you have your affairs in order, you can request a review. This can be done online through the Revenue NSW website.
Factors That Will Be Considered
As discussed previously, there must be exceptional circumstances to reason the offence. Revenue NSW will look at a number of considerations, including, but not limited to:
- Whether there was a mistake in issuing the fine
- If you were not the person who committed the offence (i.e. someone else was driving your car)
- Whether the offence was a safety issue (i.e. speeding in a school zone or not wearing a seatbelt)
- If the offender suffers from a mental illness or disability
- Where the offence was committed during a medical emergency
- If you have a clean driving record
Tips for Contesting a Fine
So now you know how to contest a fine and the factors that will be considered. Section 24 of the Fines Act 1996 (NSW) allows drivers to request a review of their penalty notice. If Revenue NSW denies your request or you disagree with the review, you can defend your case in the Local Court.
Here are some tips for contesting your fine to increase your chances of success:
- Make sure you have a valid reason to contest the fine.
- If you have the means, consult a Criminal Lawyer or Traffic Lawyer. They can offer you assistance and guidance in how to approach contesting the fine.
- Ensure you have strong supporting documentation. This may be evidence of your clean driving record. It could also be a reference from your employer affirming your good character.
- If you go to Court, ensure you are dressed appropriately, speak to the Magistrate respectfully and be prepared with evidence.
Receiving a fine is never a pleasant thing. However, if you think there were exceptional circumstances that led to the offence, or perhaps there was a mistake, you have the right to contest the fine. Following this guide will ensure you have a greater opportunity for a successful review.
Laura is a Legal Intern at Lawpath. She is studying a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Business Administration at Macquarie University. Laura is interested in Intellectual Property Law and how technology can assist in improving access to justice.