Fines and demerit points have risen in recent years to deter drivers from speeding. In the case of learner and provisional licenses, officials believe that these drivers require more time to assess hazards and deal with dangerous situations.
This article will explain the processes involved with speeding penalties and appealing suspensions on your L and P plates.
Understanding Demerit Points
A driver who has not committed any offences has zero points against their licence. If you commit an offence, demerit points are added to your driving record and incurring the threshold number of points within a three-year period will amount to a licence suspension or refusal.
Speeding Penalty Rules
It is important to be aware of licence rules to avoid fines or suspension. Learner and P1 plate drivers may have their licence suspended for at least three months for a single driving offence. Additionally, despite the speed limit, learner drivers must adhere to a maximum speed of 90km/h.
L and P plate drivers receive a minimum of four demerit points and a fine for any speeding offence and face immediate suspension for speeding more than 30km/h over the limit. Where a P1 driver incurs four or more demerit points, their licence may be suspended, the threshold for P2 drivers is slightly higher at seven demerit points.
P1 and P2 Provisional Licence Appeals
The Roads and Maritime Services’ (RMS) decision to suspend a licence can be appealed to the Local Court – the decision of the court is then final and binding. Once you lodge an appeal, you are able to continue driving until your case is brought forward to a court.
A driver has only 28 days to lodge their appeal after receiving a suspension letter from the RMS. Generally, the last day to lodge an appeal is the day before the suspension is due to commence. If you would like assistance completing the documents or understanding your rights and responsibilities, seeking legal advice is worthwhile.
Court Decisions Regarding Appeals
The court does not permit review of your guilt or innocence in regards to the offence or imposition of the fine. Generally, the Magistrate will make a decision based on 3 degrees:
- The circumstances of the offence
- Your traffic record/character
- Whether your licence is needed for work or caring for others
Seeking Legal Advice
In most cases, learner and provisional plate drivers are unfamiliar with legal protocol and have difficulty preparing adequate documentation for their appeals. DGB Lawyers can assist drivers with understanding their rights and preparing for court hearings, making the process less nerve-wracking and improving the chances of success.