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Speeding offences are one of the most prosecuted offences in Australia. And there are several ways the Australian legislation allows the judiciary to handle such violations.
Depending on where/who deals with the speeding offence, it can be;
These types of speeding charges are settled on infringement notice by the Police or Traffic officer. An offending vehicle or person will be issued a traffic ticket for the violation. Traffic tickets can solve a lot of infractions like;
If your speeding offence is settled on infringement with a ticket, no traffic conviction will be recorded against you. The offender can settle the tickets and walk away free as nothing happened. However, the Police and Traffic agency keeps records of all traffic tickets and infractions against a person.
Speeding offences that are settled with infringement notice do not appear in a Police Check. In essence, a speeding fine will be on a Police/Traffic database but never in a criminal record.
Traffic offences can be charged before a Magistrate Court following a routine court proceeding. The Magistrate will also handle the matter and determine whether the offender is guilty as claimed by the Prosecutor (the Official).
If the Court finds a person guilty of traffic offences, it will impose sentencing, which can include;
Also, an accused person who objects to a traffic ticket/fine issued by the official can contest the matter in a Magistrate/local court. If the Court finds the person guilty, it can;
Serious traffic offences cannot be dealt with as infringement notices. The official must issue a court summon in such circumstances and any other punishments they consider appropriate.
All convictions for traffic offences issued in a Magistrates or Local Court appear on a Police Check in Australia.
Speeding fines don't show up on a Police Check unless a court issues them during a proceeding.
The Police Check is a nationwide assessment in Australia that reveals all of a person’s criminal history. It does not matter how long those convictions are (issued by an adult court), as long as they are not Spent.
The Police Check also contains the details of the crime and the sentence the court-ordered. The categories of offence you will find in a criminal history check include;
Some of the offences include;
Speeding offences are some of the most significant contributors to violations and crimes on Australian roads. It doesn't matter whether it is a minor or severe offence. Driving above the limits can cause severe threats to yourself and other road users.
A speeding offence is where a person is caught operating the vehicle over the limits for that road. The traffic official will issue you with a speeding fine if you are caught exceeding the speed limits generally by 15km/h or more. For context, doing 80km/h on the road with a limit of 45km/h will earn you a speeding fine.
The Police can suspend or cancel your license if you don’t act on your fines within a stipulated time period - usually 28 days.
The duration of a license suspension depends on the severity of the offence.
In other cases, the Police officer can charge you to Court for a severe speeding offence. It means you may have to employ a lawyer to represent you before a Magistrate.
If you were not the offending driver at the time of the violation (caught on a speed camera), you must nominate the driver as soon as possible. You can be wrongly accused through a speed camera for a speeding offence.
However, if you do not nominate the driver within the time frame, the law will take you as the offender.
You are banned from driving any vehicle for the duration of your license suspension. It is a criminal offence to be caught driving another vehicle while your license is cancelled or suspended.
Getting your License back when the matter is over
After your case, your License will be returned to you after the period of disqualification (for a license suspension).
If the License is cancelled, you would have to re-apply for a license in your State or Territory.
An offender may also get a permanent license disqualification depending on the severity of the offence and their likelihood to reoffend.
Criminal records/Police Checks are not the only kind of background checks in Australia. There are several other checks that prospective employers can conduct to assess the suitability of their candidates.
While a Speeding fine may not necessarily appear on a Police Check (if there was no court conviction), it will appear on a Driving record. A Traffic agency can issue a Driving record, and it contains all your;
However, not all employers will be interested in your driving records. Of course, such records are most valuable when the person applies for a road or driving-related role. It means while a Driving record may not be required for a Factory worker, it may form part of the Background Checks for;
Speeding tickets and fines are instead considered civil violations of the laws. It means they may appear in other records than a criminal record.
If you have a speeding fine or ticket, it will not be recorded in the Criminal database unless there was an associated conviction at a Court.
However, serious speeding violations, especially those with aggravation, are handled by a Magistrate rather than by an infringement notice.
A speeding fine cannot have the same effect as a speeding offence. These differences are more visible when you consider the criminal record of a speeding violation as a broader assessment record.
However, having a speeding fine can affect you in more ways than you think. Like the examples below;
There is no way repeat offences can do any good to a person. An offender may be refused a non-driving role if there are patterns of re-offending. Before any commission, the employer can argue that such a pattern can suggest an inherent tendency that bothers on irresponsibility.
During a court proceeding, the Prosecutor can present your driving records as evidence. While it may not significantly influence the evidence, the Court will still admit it in Court. It even gets worse if you have repeat driving offences in your records.
Although people hardly consider this, some speeding fines can set you back by a significant amount. It is better to handle your vehicle within the speed limit than test the laws of Australia.
In the end, none of these infractions is ever good to anyone or the State.
The driving record will disclose the following information;
Your driving records can be cleared if you do not reoffend for three consecutive years depending on the jurisdiction. In some States or Territories, it can be as high as five years.
Having a speeding fine means you will be stuck with a driving record for a minimum of three years.
Not all infringement notices are settled with a fine or traffic ticket. Having infringement notices for some severe traffic offences will result in a conviction. Generally, these infringement notices will first cause a license loss to the offender.
The only way to stop such infringement notice is to contest the matter before a court. The contest must be applied for within 28 days of the infringement notice order.
Some traffic violations that may lead to infringement notices are;
Traffic offences are all the violations, infractions, road violations and other road/driving-related violations under the Australian Road and Traffic Acts. It also includes infringement notices, cautions and charges for minor misdemeanours.
It is wrong to classify a traffic offence as a non-criminal offence. All traffic misdemeanours and offences remain criminal offences. The only exceptions are;
If you are an individual then you can obtain a criminal history check certificate online via Australian National Character Check’s online police check application form. The results are dispatched via email.
Business and Enterprise Customers
Business and Enterprise customers are able to sign up to ANCC’s business portal where they can order, manage, track and view candidates’ criminal history check results on their business portal. Organisations will undergo a process for approval prior to being granted access to ANCC’s business portal.
ANCC sends an invite to the applicant to complete their criminal record check online and handles the application and informed consent form. Contact ANCC’s business and enterprise partnerships team today to enquire about setting up a business portal for your organisation.
LawAccess NSW (Driving and Criminal Records) - https://www.lawaccess.nsw.gov.au/Pages/representing/driving_offences_and_crime/driving_and_crime_after_court/driving_and_criminal_records.aspx
Legal Services Commission of South Australia (Speeding) - https://lawhandbook.sa.gov.au/ch12s08s05s18.php
Fines Victoria (Excessive Speed, Drug and Alcohol Offences) - https://online.fines.vic.gov.au/Infringement-fines/Excessive-speed-drug-and-alcohol-offences
LegalAid Queensland (Traffic Offences) - https://www.legalaid.qld.gov.au/Find-legal-information/Cars-and-driving/Traffic-offences
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