Beating Fines

Reporter: Andrew Bourke

You could be forgiven for thinking the debt recovery office is getting a free ride. Revenue raising from speed cameras, parking fines and even fines incurred catching the train are raking in hundreds of millions of dollars every year for the government. Well now there's a way to keep the money in your pocket and out of theirs and it's as simple as knowing your rights. Thousands of people are paying fines they don't need to.

The secret is out and it could save you hundreds, even thousands of dollars. "The most important thing to come out of this is that motorists should feel empowered to deal with their own case, they're given an opportunity to put their best foot forward and try with the Office of State Revenue to have a fine overturned rather than paying for expensive solicitors to take it to court" says Dennis Miralis.

The Debt Recovery Office has finally come clean, revealing to motorists, they have rights when it comes to dealing with traffic fines."It is very worrying that the Office of State Revenue didn't disclose for example that with a ten year clean driving record you are able to ask for leniency" says Dennis Miralis. Lawyer Denis Mirales, has had 18,000 traffic cases overturned for his clients, he believes motorists have been ripped off for years simply because they were ill informed. "There would be hundreds of thousands of motorists who are receiving penalty notices and blinding paying them and not being aware thats revenue that could remain in their pocket and not going to the government."

Here are the trade secrets you need to know if you receive a traffic fine:

PARKING FINES, SPEEDING FINES AND NEGLIGENT DRIVING

Wiped with a 10 year clean driving record.

"You can get off most parking and speeding fines, even negligent driving fines, if you have a clean record for 10 years, it can be as simple as writing a letter" says Dennis Miralis

SPEED CAMERAS AND RED LIGHTS:

"You're not the driver - prove who is and you don't pay."

Speed cameras are raking in the revenue from the Debt Recovery Office, if you incur a speed camera or red light fine and you weren't driving your car at the time, lodge a official declaration saying who was, and you're off the hook.

HOW TO AVOID PARKING FINES

  • Change for the meter
  • Unfamiliar with the machine
  • Pulled over because of medical condition

When it comes to parking meters, you can claim a waiver if you have to stop and go and get change to feed it. You're also off the hook if the meter was faulty or if you're unfamiliar with the type of machine. And if you can prove you suffer from a medical condition that made stopping or parking your car necessary or it was a medical emergency, the fine can be cancelled. While a clean 10 year driving record could be your saviour when it comes to avoiding a range of traffic violations.

NO EXEMPTIONS!

  • Speeding in school zone.
  • Driving while on your mobile.
  • Misuse of disabled parking permits.
  • Driving 30kms/hr over the limit.

There's NO exemption if you're caught speeding in a school zone or if you're caught using your mobile phone behind the wheel. For incorrect use of disabled parking permits, expect to pay and if your busted breaking the speed limit by over 30kms/hr- you're looking at a serious fine and a heavy loss of points.

  • Proof of past ticket purchase and a no history of ticket evasion for 5 years.
  • No ticket selling facilities - no fine
  • Prove there were disruptions - no fine

For those who don't drive and take the train and don't have a ticket, you'll cop a $100 fine, but if you can prove you've bought a ticket in the past and don't have a history of fare evasion for 5 years, you'll get off. There's also leeway for first time train users and if there were no ticket selling facilities open. If the offence was committed as a result of serious disruptions, the inconvenience will become the governments. And it's better to be safe than sorry, so if you are challenging a fine, keep records.

"Write to the State Debt Recovery Office and keep a copy of the letter, also if you're speaking to someone on the phone, keep a record of the conversation by simple taking some short notes" says Dennis Miralis.

Dennis Miralis

Nyman Gibson Stewart Criminal Lawyers

Tel: (02) 9264 8884

Website: http://www.notguilty.com/