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What you can do about your Habitual Traffic Offender Declaration

What you can do about your Habitual Traffic Offender Declaration

Published on December 4, 2020

In 2017, the Habitual Traffic Offender declaration was abolished in New South Wales.

Prior to this, if you committed three or more serious driving offences in a five year period, you may have been declared a “Habitual Traffic Offender”.

A Habitual Traffic Offender Declaration resulted in the person being subject to a five year disqualification period on top of any disqualification period they were subject to as a result of any offences committed.

Even though the New South Wales Government changed the laws surrounding Habitual Traffic Offender Declarations, people who had been declared a Habitual Traffic Offender before the changes to the law did not have their declarations removed. As a result they are still subject to the 5 year disqualification period due to the declaration.

However, the changes to laws in New South Wales do allow for a person who has been declared a Habitual Traffic Offender to apply to the Local Court to have their declaration removed.

You can apply to the Local Court in New South Wales to have your Habitual Traffic Offender Declaration quashed. You will be required to complete an application form and file this form with the Court. In support of the application, you will also need;

  1. a copy of the letter from the Roads and Maritime Service which declared you to be a Habitual Traffic Offender: or
  2. you will need to know the offences which lead to you being declared a Habitual Traffic Offender and the Court which convicted you of the offences. If you do not know this information, you can contact Roads and Maritime Service to obtain a copy of your traffic record.

Your application will be allocated a listing date before a Magistrate. In determining whether to grant your application, the Magistrate considers whether the disqualification imposed by the Habitual Traffic Offenders Declaration is disproportionate and unjust when taking into consideration your driving record and any special circumstances.

The Court allows you as the applicant or any legal representative acting on your behalf to make submissions to the Magistrate in relation to the circumstances which you would like the court to take into account in determining your application to remove the declaration.

An application to quash the Habitual Traffic Offender Declaration will only remove the disqualification period associated with the declaration. Should you have outstanding disqualification periods for other offences, you would need to make a different application to the Court to have all disqualifications removed.

If, you have a query relating to the information in this article, or you require advice about your own matter, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Caitlin Sauer – Solicitor of our  Criminal Law Team of Carroll & O’Dea Lawyers who are there for you ‘when it matters’ on 1800 059 278.

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