CONTESTING TRAFFIC FINES IN SOUTH AFRICA

Below are steps to take for contesting traffic fines.

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Criminal Procedure Act – S341 (when you receive a traffic fine but not a court summons)

1. You may write to the traffic department.
2. You’ll need only the compounding notice number.
3. If you have the compounding notice, attach a copy of it to your letter. Keep the original safe.
4. Letters need not be accompanied by an affidavit.
5. You can post, fax or email your letter to the traffic department. You are not required to use registered mail if you post it, but it helps to establish a paper trail.
6. The traffic department may respond to you in writing. In reality this rarely happens.
7. If your representation is successful, the fine will either be cancelled or reduced.
8. The most common outcome is for the fine to be reduced because they want the money.
9. If your representation is unsuccessful, you will need to await the summons to be issued and served on you.
10. By paying the admission of guilt fine on the compounding notice (prior to a summons) you will not incur a criminal record.

Criminal Procedure Act – S54 or S56 (when you receive a summons to appear in court)

1. You may write to or approach the public prosecutor at the magistrates court you are summoned to appear in.
2. You’ll need the original S54 summons or S56 written notice.
3. If you write to him/her, attach a copy of the summons or written notice to your letter. Keep the original safe.
4. Letters need not be accompanied by an affidavit.
5. You can post, fax or email your letter to the public prosecutor. You are not required to use registered mail if you post it, but it helps to establish a paper trail.
6. If you write to the public prosecutor and do not deliver your letter in person, he/she may respond to you in writing. In reality this rarely happens.
7. If your representation is successful, the summons will either be withdrawn or the fine reduced. The most common outcome is for the fine to be reduced because they want the money.
8. If your representation is unsuccessful, you will have to appear in court if you do not pay the admission of guilt fine.
9. If you appear in court, you are strongly advised to have an attorney represent you but be careful to obtain one who is familiar with traffic law. There’s a lot of truth to the saying “a man who represents himself has a fool for a lawyer” so be careful.
10. If you pay the admission of guilt fine or are found guilty in court, the Criminal Procedure Act says you must be given a criminal record.

AARTO Act – AARTO 01 or AARTO 03 (applies to Tshwane and Johannesburg)

1. You’ll need an AARTO 08 representation form. Get the Form here.
2. You’ll need all of the details required on that from, including the infringement notice number and issuing authority name
3. If you have any additional evidence, etc. you may attach it to your representation.
4. All AARTO 08 representations must be signed in front of a commissioner of oaths.
5. You submit this form by the methods stated on the form. You can upload it at the www.aarto.gov.za website. It is recommended that you use the facility on the AARTO website to submit it since this causes the status of the infringement notice to change to “representation” immediately on eNaTIS. You also get an AARTO 05c receipt to download immediately.
6. By law, you must be notified of the outcome of your representation on an AARTO 09 result of representation. In reality this rarely happens.
7. If your representation is successful, the infringement notice will be cancelled. If it is unsuccessful the RTIA may add a further R200 to the penalty if you made representation after 64 days had lapsed from the time of infringement.
8. If your representation is unsuccessful, you may elect to be tried in court, in which case a summons in terms of Section 54 of the Criminal Procedure Act must be served on you.
9. If you are found guilty in court, you will have to pay the fine but you will not incur a criminal record.

SOURCE: http://searchsa.co.za/wc-gov/traffic-fines-south-africa.php

 

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