If you’ve just been booked – for whatever: drink driving, speeding, minor traffic offence, etc. – and you’ve got a good record, there’s a fair old chance you can get off. Or at least, have a conviction recorded with no penalty.
That means: no fine, no demerit points, no losing your licence. A free kick: one of the few in life that remain.
It’s called Section 10 of the Crimes, Sentencing Procedures Act. Bit of a mouthful.
It’s not a scam. It’s part of the law. You should use it if applicable. (And it’s not just for traffic offences; it’s for other matters as well.) Basically, it gives the judge the opportunity to consider all the relevant factors in a case, such as the seriousness of the offence, the outcomes, why you did it, plus your standing in the community and your driving history/record.
Basically, if you’ve been a good boy (or girl) and the offence was comparatively minor, if you didn’t intend to put people at risk, if you’re an otherwise fine, upstanding citizen, then the magistrate can take it all into consideration and give you what is, essentially, a free pass on this one.
If the offence is found against you, or if you admit it, you can make an application for a Section 10 finding.
A few things to consider here:
First, your record looks best the first time you get pinged. That’s the time to apply for the Section 10. Many people pay the first fine, then the second, then the third (run of bad luck) and then when the fourth hits and they look like losing their job, then their house and possibly their family as well, they decide to try to fight in court.
At this stage your record looks pretty bad. The judge will probably be less inclined to grant your Section 10 application because you look like a bad driver. So, apply for the Section 10 the first time you get booked. Don’t wait until the sword is poised aloft, over your licence.
Second, pay a solicitor for their advice – if only for just 30 minutes. They can lay out your chances and how the process works. If you’re half smart (say smarter than a politician, or a light bulb) you should be able to go to court and apply for a Section 10 on your own. The magistrate is obliged to assist you to ensure you don’t get the bum’s rush – they need to ensure that justice is served (rather than serving you up like a lamb to the slaughter).
And, if you represent yourself, going to court is actually quite affordable.
More on Section 10 HERE >>