Exceed Speed Limit By More Than 30km/h
If you are caught speeding by more than of 30 kilometres per hour you will receive a fine of $935 and 5 demerit points. However, what many people do not know is that the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) hold a discretion to suspend your licence for a period of 3 months.
Depending on what type of licence you hold, the police also have the power to issue you with an immediate licence suspension for a period of 3 months.
Learner Or Provisional Licence Holder
If you are a provisional licence holder and exceed the speed limit by more than 30km/h the police have the power to issue you with an immediate licence suspension for a period of 3 months. Such a suspension can be appealed within 28 days of the date of the suspension. To be successful in this appeal, you must show the Court that you have exceptional circumstances for why you need your licence. Exceptional circumstances are not met solely by needing a licence for work; there will need to be additional compelling circumstances for the court to allow the appeal.
A further issue that provisional licence holders face, is that the 5 demerit points which apply once the fine is paid will in most circumstances, depending on whether you are a P1 or P2 licence holder, result in a demerit point suspension on the completion of the initial three-month police disqualification. This suspension can also be appealed to the Local Court.
Full Licence Holder
If you are a full licence holder and exceed the speed limit by more than 30km/h but less than 45km/h Transport for NSW has discretion to suspend your licence for 3 months. The agency will notify you via a letter called a “Notice of Suspension”. Once this letter has been received, you have 28 days to appeal the decision to the Local Court using the approved Local Court document. The 28-day period starts from the date of the letter.
The Local Court, in determining whether they should allow or vary the appeal, take into account what seems just to the Court in the circumstances. Predominantly, the Court takes into consideration your traffic record and your need for a licence.
Electing For The Charge To Be Decided In Court
If you do not want to pay the fine or accept the demerit points you can elect for the infringement notice to be dealt with in the Local Court. Before you decide to follow this path, there are factors that need to be considered.
- The maximum fine increases from $935 to $2200;
- If convicted, it will show on your criminal record; and
- Regulation 10-2 (5) of the Road Rules 2014 states that if convicted, you will automatically be disqualified for 3 months and the magistrate has the discretion to increase the disqualification period to whatever length of time they deem fit.
Can I Avoid A Criminal Record For A Speeding Offence?
It can be possible under section 10 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999, which allow the court to find you guilty of the offence without recording a conviction. Under s 10(1)(a) the charge will be dismissed; under s 10(1)(b) you will be discharged under a conditional release order; and under s 10(1)(c) you will be discharged on the condition you take part in an intervention program. Further, this means you will not have to pay a fine nor incur demerit points.
For advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.