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Road Transport Amendment: New Disqualification Periods


Parliament is currently considering major changes to disqualification periods in NSW.

The legislation will come into effect on 28 October 2017. The legislation will provide for numerous positive changes to safety for road users in NSW and offers a light at the end of the tunnel for drivers who are disqualified for extended periods of time.

The legislation will drastically reduce the minimum disqualification periods and maximum terms of imprisonment for driving unlicenced offences. The new penalties are:

Offence Default Period of Disqualification Minimum Period of Disqualification Maximum Fine Maximum Term of Imprisonment
Drive while Disqualified/Cancelled/Suspended/Refused- first offence 6 months 3 months 30 penalty units($3,300) 6 months
Drive while Disqualified/Cancelled/Suspended/Refused- second or subsequent offence 12 months 6 months 50 penalty units($5,500) 12 months
Drive while Suspended (fine default)- first offence 3 months 1 month 30 penalty units ($3,300) NIL
Drive while Suspended (fine default)- second offence or subsequent 12 months 3 months 50 penalty units ($5,500) 6 months
Drive Unlicenced (driver never licenced)- second or subsequent offence 12 months 3 months 50 penalty units ($5,500) 65 months

There are a few factors to note about these penalties:

  • The minimum and default disqualification periods are drastically lower than current penalties;
  • There is no maximum disqualification period for any of these offences, so it is still within the Court’s power to order extended periods;
  • The legislation requires that all disqualifications ordered commence for the date of sentence unless otherwise ordered by the Court. This means that there would be some concurrency in disqualifications periods imposed during the currency of existing ones, limiting the overall period off the road.

To find out more about the new legislation and how it might apply to you, please contact the dedicated traffic lawyers at Armstrong Legal on 1300 168 676.

Image Credit – Pockygallery © 123RF.com

Written by John Sutton on October 27, 2017

John is the National Director of Criminal Law at Armstrong Legal. The experience John possesses, being a high quality mix of defence and prosecution skills, together with his team at Armstrong Legal, mean you can be certain of accurate, dependable and practical advice on how your matter can dealt with. View John's profile


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