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Facts about infringements

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What is an infringement notice?

An Infringement Notice is a fine given to people who have broken minor laws. Infringements are often issued to people for breaking laws like:

  • Road rules such as speeding or driving through a red light
  • Local council rules such as parking for longer than allowed
  • Public transport rules such as travelling without a valid ticket

You can receive an infringement notice:

  • Face-to-face by Police or an authorised person
  • On the windscreen of your car
  • In the mail

What are my options if I receive an infringement?
When you receive an infringement, you will have 21 days make the payment.

If you ignore your infringement or do not pay it on time, you will receive a Penalty Reminder Notice, $28.50* will be added to the original amount and you will be given a further 14 days to deal with your infringement. If you continue to do nothing, a Notice of Final Demand may be issued against you, an additional $133.40* will be added to the outstanding amount and you will be given a further 21 days to deal with the infringement. If you still do nothing, an Enforcement Warrant may be issued against you and a further $58.40* will be added to the total outstanding amount of your infringement. An Enforcement Warrant allows the Sheriff to come to your address and demand payment, stop you at a police roadblock, wheel clamp your vehicle, seize and sell personal property or remove the number plates from your vehicle. *these amounts are correct at the time of writing but may change.

What if I can't afford to pay the infringement?
If you cannot afford to pay the infringement by the due date, you may be able to apply for an extension or a payment plan. An extension allows you to extend the due date to make the payment, while a payment plan allows you to pay the outstanding amount off in smaller payments over time instead of all at once.
You can apply for either an extension or a payment plan:

What if I wasn't the driver?
If you were not the driver at the time, you can nominate the actual driver to receive the infringement instead. There are strict timelines to make a nomination and if you do not do it quickly then the law can hold you responsible for the infringement. If your nomination is successful, the infringement will be sent to the other driver.

Can I dispute the infringement?

You have a right to dispute your infringements in open court. However, going to court takes time and effort, and the Magistrate can give you harsher penalties if they find you guilty. In many cases it will be simpler to pay off the infringement. You should always get advice from a lawyer before you choose to go to court. You can contact The Deakin Student Legal Service on 1300 32 52 00 (Burwood students) or 1300 430 599 (Geelong and Warrnambool students).

What if I disagree with the infringement?
If you disagree with the infringement, you can ask for a review. Depending on the stage of the infringement, you may want to ask for an internal review or an enforcement review. There are a few reasons you can ask for a review and you may want to speak to a lawyer to check which ones apply to you.
If you were not aware of the original infringement you can ask for the late fees to be removed. You cannot use this reason if you forgot to update your drivers’ licence address with VicRoads.
If you think the infringement was incorrectly given to you and was contrary to what the law says. We recommend speaking to a lawyer first.
Exceptional circumstances
– while there is no legal definition about what makes your circumstances “exceptional”, some reasons include incurring the infringement during an emergency or making an honest and reasonable mistake.
Special circumstances
- You must prove that you had special circumstances at the time of the infringement and that your special circumstances meant you could not control or understand your behaviour. You will usually need to provide supporting letter from a medical practitioner or a support worker.
Special circumstances include:

  • Mental illness or intellectual disability
  • Serious addiction to drugs or alcohol
  • Being a victim of family violence
  • Being homeless

Are there other options?
If you were a victim of family violence at the time you got the infringement and this substantially contributed to you committing the offence or meant you could not nominate the real driver, then you can apply under the Family Violence Scheme (FVS) to have these infringements waived. You will need to provide evidence to support your application with a statutory declaration, an intervention order and/or letters of support from workers and professionals.
Work & Development Permits (WDP) If you have special circumstances or are experiencing serious financial difficulties, a sponsor agency can help you “work off” your infringement by participating in activities like seeing a Counsellor or doing a short course.
DUSA is a WDP sponsor. Please contact the Deakin Student Legal Service or DUSA on 9246 8615 if you are interested in learning more about a WDP.

How can a Financial Counsellor help?
Financial Counsellors help people who are experiencing financial difficulty. They are skilled professionals who will guide you through your options and help you plan your way out of debt.
They may be able to assist you by:

  • Doing a full assessment of your financial situation, including regular income and expenditure, assets and liabilities, to help you fully understand your position, create a budget and put a plan into place
  • Providing advice on how to negotiate with your creditors, government agencies or other providers
  • Negotiating directly with your creditors in certain circumstances
  • Providing advice about what options, rights and responsibilities you may have
  • Referring you to other services you may need, such as legal services, crisis food and accommodation services, and health services

What can a Financial Counsellor provide information about?

  • Credit and debt-related matters
  • The rights of debtors
  • How to lodge complaints with various ombudsman schemes if you feel you are not being treated fairly and whether you should have been given a loan in the first place
  • Working out a realistic payment plan for debts
  • How to access other specialist support services, including gambling, family support, personal counselling, legal aid, and emergency relief.

It is then up to you to make the decisions about how to manage your situation with the advice you have been given.


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