Could your traffic fine be invalid? Here’s how to find out!

Published on: 13 August 2015

Could your traffic fine be invalid? Here’s how to find out!

Once you are issued a traffic fine, you will be required to pay the designated amount within a stipulated period of time. If you happen to miss the cut-off date for payment, you will be required to appear in court.

When it comes to invalid traffic fines, however, it is your responsibility to argue the relevance and validity of the fine, whether issued by an officer on the side of the road or through the post.

Here is what you need to know about what causes a traffic fine to become invalid:

The Criminal Procedure Act

Due to the fact that traffic fines and violations are managed by AARTO, the rules that are stipulated in the Criminal Procedure Act are only used for specific offences - particularly drunk driving, an accident involving death, and exceeding the speed limit by 30 km.

  • When it comes to traffic fines, the act stipulates that if the alleged infringement is captured on camera, the motorist will need to receive a notice of offence within 30 days. If the notice is generated on the 31st day, the traffic fine is deemed unlawful and invalid.
  • If you have been issued a traffic fine, you are responsible for requesting a photograph of your vehicle. The image needs to show your vehicle in a clear manner – if there is more than one other car within the image, travelling at the same speed as your vehicle, you are able to dispute the validity of the fine. On perusal, if they find that there are too many vehicles to accurately determine an offender, the fine will be invalid.
  • If you are issued a fine by a corrupt traffic officer who asks for (or implies) bribery, or happens to threaten you, the fine will be invalid.

AARTO (Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences)

In comparison to the Criminal Procedure Act, AARTO aims to sanction minor traffic offences, giving motorists flexible limitations in which to pay off their fines, with the possibility of receiving a 50% discount if paid within a certain time frame. Under AARTO, the following situations would deem a fine invalid:

  • If you nominate another driver to take the responsibility of the paying of the fine. Perhaps a friend or your significant other used your car during the date of the fine. If you feel that is unfair for you to pay for their misdemeanour, you can nominate them for the violation.
  • If you make a representation to the RTIA (Road Traffic Infringement Agency). If you believe that there a reasonable grounds on which to cancel your ticket, you will be able to submit a representation in the form of a sworn statement that indicates why you should not be held liable for the fine.
  • If you appear in court and win your case. Perhaps you end up in court and present a valid case as to why you should not have received the fine – if you win, the fine becomes invalid

Affordable car insurance is a must when driving, because of reckless drivers! If you have yet to invest in car insurance, be sure to contact MiWay today for an up-to-date insurance quote.

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