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, Question of the week- FRIDAY 31ST JANUARY – What Is the Process for Appealing a Suspended Driver’s Licence?, Brydens Lawyers

Question: What Is the Process for Appealing a Suspended Driver’s Licence?

Regrettably, the suspension of a driver’s licence is far more prevalent today than it has ever been. It can be argued that this is a good or a bad thing. The question that is often asked though is whether or not there is any appeal available from a suspended driver’s licence.

Generally, there are two different processes that can be followed following the suspension of a driver’s licence.

The first process applies to the suspension of a licence under the following circumstances:

  • You were speeding more than 35 kph above the speed limit.
  • you were speeding more than 30 kph above the speed limit
  • you are a provisional licence holder (P Plater) and have lost all your demerit points.

In such cases a “licence appeal” in the Local Court may be lodged. To do so please note the following:

  • An infringement notice or penalty notice will be received by the driver.
  • A determination is then made as to whether the infringement is to be challenged. If not, the fine is to be paid.
  • Following payment of the fine a notice of suspension will be received which will set out the date from which the suspension will commence. It will also provide the grounds upon which an appeal can be lodged by either calling the RMS or filing the appeal online.
  • Usually there is 28 days from the date of receipt of the notice of suspension to file the appeal. Time is of the essence.
  • A court date will be provided for the licence appeal hearing.

At court the magistrate who hears the licence appeal, following the admission of all relevant evidence, has three options. They are:

  • Allow the appeal. This will remove the suspension period completely and delete the demerit points;
  • Dismiss the appeal and confirm the suspension period; or
  • Dismiss the appeal and reduce the suspension period.

If you are a full licence holder and have exhausted the demerit point allocation, then a licence appeal cannot be lodged. However, you may seek to challenge the infringement or infringements which led to the exhaustion of the demerit points.

To challenge an infringement notice it is imperative that the fine is not paid. Payment of the fine will eliminate the right to appeal any suspension that flows from the exhaustion of the
demerit points. An appeal should be lodged as against the infringement by either calling the RMS or lodgement of same online.

Again, there will usually be 28 days from the date of receipt of the infringement notice with time of the essence.

On the hearing of the matter a magistrate, following the admission of all evidence, can:

  • Not record a conviction pursuant to Section 10, as a result you will not lose any demerit points and your licence will not be suspended.
  • Alternatively, convict you of the infringement and confirm the penalty. As a result, the suspension for the mandatory period will stand.

Many may be concerned with appealing a licence suspension because what may or may not happen in court. Generally, a magistrate will provide an opportunity for you to argue why your licence should not be suspended or why the infringement notice should not stand. Many factors are taken into account including the seriousness of the alleged misconduct, your traffic record and your particular need for a driver’s licence.

Your interests are best served by having proper legal representation. Brydens Lawyers are available to assist. An experienced and expert lawyer will guide you as to what evidence to prepare and will address the court on your behalf. It would be remiss of us not to say that the prospects of retaining your licence would be significantly improved with experienced and professional legal representation on your side.

If you are seeking to challenge the suspension of a driver’s licence or an infringement notice, contact Brydens Lawyers for expert and professional legal representation. Strict time limits apply. Do not delay. Contact Brydens Lawyers on 1800 848 848 today. Brydens Lawyers – WE DO help if your driver’s licence has been suspended.