You may be eligible to have an infringement notice withdrawn or an enforcement order cancelled if there are special circumstances, such as a drug addiction or homelessness.
The term 'special circumstances' is defined in the Infringements Act 2006. This may apply to you if at the time you got the fine:
1. You had a mental or intellectual condition, or a serious addiction to drugs or alcohol, that meant you:
2. You were homeless and your homelessness meant that you couldn't control the behaviour that was against the law (even if you knew it was against the law).
Note: Homelessness can include staying in crisis accommodation, living in transitional housing, couch surfing or sleeping rough.
In order to qualify for special circumstances you must:
1. have a mental health condition or addiction or be homeless and
2. explain how this condition or circumstance caused the infringement and
3. provide evidence to support your claim.
You must provide a statement from your health practitioner or case worker that explains how your special circumstances meant you could not obey the law.
Statements can be accepted from relevant practitioners, including but not limited to:
1. In the case of a mental illness, disability or disorder:
2. In the case of a serious addiction to drugs, alcohol, or a volatile substance
3. In the case of Homelessness
There is no restriction on the format of the statement, however your practitioner or case worker should include their qualifications and relationship with you.
The statement must:
Your practitioner or case worker must also address the following questions:
1. What is the diagnosis?
2. Has the illness, condition or addiction resulted in you being unable to either understand or control the conduct that constitutes the offence?
3. Is there any other relevant information?
In relation to homelessness the statement or letter must:
When completing the statement the following questions must also be addressed:
1. What are your current living arrangements?
2. Has homelessness resulted in you being unable to control your conduct that constitutes the offence?
Applications may be made on the basis of 'exceptional circumstances'. This term is not defined in the Infringements Act and applications may be made on any basis.
If a person wishes to claim exceptional circumstances on the basis of medical or health reasons, they will require supporting evidence from their practitioner to show that because of particular circumstances they should be excused from liability to pay the infringement.
The method for applying depends on how far your fine has progressed within the infringements process (infringement notice, penalty reminder notice, enforcement order or infringement warrant).
The best way to identify the current status of your fine is to check your most recent notice (for example, the title at the top of the form may indicate "Infringement Notice - to The Operator" or "Enforcement Order Notice").
If you have an infringement notice or penalty reminder notice:
You must complete an internal review form.
Please send your completed form, along with all original documents, to the agency that issued your fine (refer to your most recent notice for agency contact details).
For more information about internal reviews, please visit the Request an Internal Review page of this website.
Checklist (infringement notice or penalty reminder notice stage):
If you have an enforcement order or infringement warrant:
You must complete an application for revocation (special circumstances).
Please send your completed application, with all original documents, to:
Infringements CourtSpecial Circumstances RegistrarPO Box 14487MELBOURNE VIC 8001
Please note: If supporting documents are not provided, your application may not be successful.
Checklist (enforcement order or infringement warrant stage):
If your application is granted, the Infringements Court will:
The issuing agency can decide to withdraw the fine, or refer the fine to the Magistrates' Court for hearing. The Magistrates' Court will advise you of the hearing date.
If your application is refused, the Infringements Court will:
If you're unhappy with the outcome of your application, you can write to the Infringements Court requesting that your matter be referred to the Magistrates Court for final determination.
Your letter must include:
You should send your objection within 28 days of the date in your notice.
Send your letter to:The Infringements RegistrarPO Box 14487Melbourne 8001
If you are applying for special circumstances it is recommended that you seek legal advice:
If you require further information about applications you can contact Civic Compliance Victoria® by phone 9200 8111 or visit Ground Floor, 277 William Street, Melbourne.