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Will traffic offences show up on my police check?

The information on this webpage is to be read in conjunction with this disclaimer:
Australian National Character Check (ANCC) makes every effort to provide updated and accurate information to its customers. However due to the continuously changing nature of legislations for the Commonwealth and various States and Territories, it is inevitable that some information may not be up to date. The information on the website is general information only. The contents on the website do not constitute legal or professional advice and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal or professional advice. While we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, suitability, accuracy or availability with respect to the information.


When you apply for a police check in Australia, your result can come out in any of the two ways;

Not all offences are classified as a DCO following the Commonwealth/State Legislation. Where no disclosable outcome is found, the police check comes out with a No disclosable Court Outcome record. Some of the offences that may vary between DCO and NDCO are Traffic offences.

What are Traffic offences?

Traffic offences subsume a whole set of convictions, offences, infringements, irregular driving/road usage behaviours, cautions and punishments related to driving and road usage as stipulated by the Australian legislation on traffic and driving.

However, most people erroneously exclude traffic offences as a "non-criminal offence". All traffic offences remain a criminal offence, with the only difference being that;

    ✔ Traffic offences are basically found in a traffic history,

    ✔ Others, in the broader police criminal history.

Will my Traffic offences appear on my police check?

Driving or traffic offences can show up on a Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check (police check). Offences on police checks are disclosed in accordance with the spent convictions scheme and information release policies. Offences may also be released depending on the purpose of the check.

What is a police check?

Most organisations/agencies/employers usually request a police check result before employing an individual. In most cases, it is even mandatory by the Australian government. The police check helps the requesting party to assess the suitability of the holder/applicant for the role.

Issued by the Australian Police, a police check is a record of all the criminal and Police records of an individual. It includes pending charges, convictions and finding of guilt.

In a nutshell, if you get a conviction in a court (juvenile or adult) of any criminal offence, it will appear in your police check in Australia.

Do all traffic offences incur a conviction?

Not all traffic offences lead to a conviction, though they remain criminal offences. Traffic offences that usually lead to having convictions are those that impose a License loss.

Examples of traffic offences that lead to loss of license are;

  • Drunk driving
  • Drugged driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Exceeding the speed limit by over 25km/h
  • Evading the Police (Police chase)
  • Hit and run (manslaughter charges through driving)

Where they charge any of these offences against you, and you lose your appeal (and provide witnesses) or fail to appeal, the court will convict you. The conviction will also lead to your license cancellation for a minimum of 6 months

Generally, to avoid a conviction, you must appeal within 28 days of being charged with the offence. If the court acquits you of the charge, it will not appear in your police check.

Why it is important to avoid a conviction

Most people are career drivers/traffic workers, and having a traffic conviction on their nationally coordinated criminal history check may dampen their chances at employment, getting their Driver accreditation and other hardships. As much as possible, try to avoid getting traffic convictions if you plan to be any of these;

    ✔ Taxi driver/Commercial Passenger Vehicles; where a conviction will lead to a suspension of your driver accreditation

    ✔ Truck drivers; where your employer abhors certain convictions

    ✔ You want to be a rider for hailing services like Uber, Lyft, Oma and co.; they are usually specific about traffic history

    ✔ Your insurer may have terms in the contract that precludes drivers with convictions on their Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check certification for certain offences

    ✔ Immigrant to Australia; DIMA indicates that application for a PR or citizenship can be rejected if you have a conviction or pending charges

    ✔ Emigration; if the country indicates that a conviction for your offence may result in being denied residency

    ✔ Your employer usually checks to see if you have any conviction for drug-related offences like drug driving

    ✔ Lastly, you have confidence using the road when you don’t have any conviction

How can I request a police check?

Police checks have become a crucial requirement for various uses in Australia;

However, it is generally more convernivent to get your background check when you apply via the online portal of accredited agencies like Australian National Character Check (ANCC).

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The content on this website is communicated to you on behalf of Australian National Character Check™ (ANCC®) pursuant to Part VB of the Copyright Act 1968 (the Act).

The material in this communication may be subject to copyright under the Act. Any further reproduction of this material may be the subject of copyright protection under the Act.

You may include a link on your website pointing to this content for commercial, educational, governmental or personal use.

The contents of this website do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal or professional advice.

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