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Demerit Points:

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The In broad terms, the Demerit Points Scheme is part of a national program that allows for the allocation of demerit points for certain driving offences. The purpose of the Demerit Points Scheme is to help encourage ‘safe and responsible’ driving by the public. Aside from the financial penalties that are associated with driving offences, the accumulation of demerit points serves as an incentive for drivers to obey the road rules.

Accumulation of demerit points

Contrary to the general opinion, a person who has not committed any traffic offences has zero demerit points. Where a traffic offence that incurs demerit points is carried out and established, demerit points are accumulated on your driving record. Where the number of demerit points you incur reach the threshold applicable to your licence class over a three year period, you can be suspended from holding a drivers licence.  The demerit point thresholds are:

  • 13 points for unrestricted licence holders
  • 14 points for professional drivers
  • 7 points for provisional P2 licence holders (green Ps)
  • 4 points for provisional P1 licence holders (red Ps)
  • 4 points for learner licence holders
  • 2 points for unrestricted licence holders who are serving a good behaviour period.

Suspension and refusal periods

Reaching or exceeding the demerit points limit results in licence suspension or refusal. Roads and Maritime Services will usually send a Notice of Suspension or Refusal to a licence holder who reaches or exceeds the number of points available for their type of licence, or who commits an excessive speed offence. A Notice of Suspension or Refusal will usually specify the date the licence Suspension or Refusal is to begin. The imposition of a licence Suspension or Refusal period relies on Roads and Maritime Services (replacing Roads and Traffic Authority) serving a Notice.

For unrestricted licence holders, the period of suspension depends on the number of points accumulated as follows:

  • 13 to 15 points - three months.
  • 16 to 19 points - four months.
  • 20 or more points - five months.
  • For provisional and learner licence holders, the suspension period is three months.

Good behaviour period

If you are an unrestricted licence holder (or full licence holder) and you receive a notice of suspension of your driver’s license due because you have accrued enough demerit points to place you over the 13 demerit point threshold, you may be able to apply to the Roads and Maritime Authority to be placed on a 12 month good behaviour period (or good behaviour licence) instead of having your licence suspended. The option to elect to be on a ‘good behaviour licence’ is restricted to holders of an unrestricted licence. If you accumulate 2 or more demerit points whilst you are on a good behaviour period, the Roads and Maritime Authority will generally suspend your licence for double your original suspension period.

If you need legal advice about your demerit points, or you have received a notice of Suspension or Refusal from the Roads and Maritime Service, we encourage you to contact our traffic lawyers and solicitors to seek help on what your options moving forward may be. You can contact a Navado traffic lawyer and arrange a meeting by calling us on (02) 9233 4048 or sending an email to info@navado.com.au.

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This webpage (and any material or wording appearing on this webpage) is provided for general information purposes only and does not constitute any Legal Advice. It does not take into account your objectives, your instructions or all of the relevant facts and/or circumstances. Navado accepts no responsibility to any person who relies on the information provided on this website. We further refer you to our Disclaimer.

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