A court fine is a monetary penalty that is ordered by a court following a hearing for an offence. In Victoria, our courts include the Victorian Magistrates’ Court and the County Court of Victoria. A magistrate or judge may choose to refer the court fine to Fines Victoria for collection and enforcement.
Court fines are referred to Fines Victoria unless the magistrate or judge decides otherwise. If you believe you have a court fine, contact Fines Victoria to see if the fine has been referred to them for management. If the fine has not been referred to Fines Victoria, you can contact the court directly.
You can also seek free legal information from the Federation of Community Legal Centres (FCLC) or Victoria Legal Aid (VLA).
The court may make a determination and order you to pay a fine in your absence. If you were not in court when the final order was made, you may be eligible for a rehearing.
A magistrate may choose to refer the court fine to Fines Victoria for collection and management or they may choose for the court to manage the fine.
If you have been ordered to pay a court fine, you will receive a Court Fine Collection Statement from Fines Victoria. The Court Fine Collection Statement has details about the court order (excluding additional orders not referred to Fines Victoria) and the major charge. It tells you how much to pay, when payment is due and provides information about your options and consequences of not dealing with the fine.
If you do not pay the court fine by the due date on your Court Fine Collection Statement, you will also receive a Notice of Final Demand from Fines Victoria. The Notice of Final Demand will state whether you have a court fine or an infringement fine.
If you are still unsure, contact us for assistance.
You can deal with your court fine by:
Fines Victoria is not able to determine if you are eligible for a rehearing, but the court that issued your fine can.
It is recommended that you seek legal advice and visit the relevant court website for further information about applying for a rehearing before contacting the court for further detail. Be aware that you will need to physically attend the court location where your matter was heard to lodge a rehearing application.
Seek legal advice before contacting the court when considering whether to apply for a rehearing or an appeal.
Fines Victoria can create or modify an existing payment arrangement to include a court fine after a Court Fine Collection Statement is issued, and if it is permitted by the order of the court. Your payment options are outlined on your Court Fine Collection Statement.
If permitted by the court, you can apply for a payment arrangement with Fines Victoria up until:
The purpose of combining the payment plans is to streamline and make it simpler, not about affordability. We would not seek to put people in unaffordable positions, regardless of whether they have a single or multiple plan.
Centrepay deducts instalments from your Centrelink payments. You can pay your instalments through Centrepay if the court fine has been referred to Fines Victoria.
The Director, Fines Victoria can waive or reduce some fees, but cannot waive fees that have been imposed by a court. If you wish to apply to have the collection fee imposed by the Notice of Final Demand reviewed, please submit your request in writing to Fines Victoria.
No, court fines are not eligible for an enforcement review.
Fines Victoria is unable to convert your court fine to unpaid community work, however the court that issued the fine may be able to.
For information on this option you should consult the Magistrates' Court website or seek legal advice, before contacting the court. Be aware that you will require up to date information from Fines Victoria on how much is outstanding on your fine, to convert your court fine to community work.
No, court fines cannot be added to your work and development permit.
If you do not pay or deal with your court fine by the due date, the fine will be registered with the Director, Fines Victoria and a Notice of Final Demand will be issued. Additional fees will also be added to your outstanding amount.
If you do not finalise the matter by the due date on the Notice of Final Demand, the Director, Fines Victoria may take one or more of the following enforcement actions:
Note: It's an offence to drive with a suspended licence or unregistered vehicle.
The Director may also apply to the Magistrates' Court to issue an enforcement warrant. Additional fees will be added to your outstanding amount when the warrant is issued.
If your statement includes an amount for toll costs, it means the court has made an order that you pay administrative costs in relation to a tolling offence, and has referred that order to Fines Victoria for collection.
These orders are not enforced by Fines Victoria in the same way as other outstanding amounts. This means that if the toll costs are the only amount outstanding, additional fees will not be added by Fines Victoria. However, if the amount remains unpaid the relevant tolling company may take action against you to recover these costs, which may lead to you incurring additional costs.
If there is a warrant on your court fine then your fine has progressed to an enforcement warrant. When an enforcement warrant is issued, sheriff's officers can:
Before executing an enforcement warrant against an individual, sheriff’s officers will serve a 7 day notice on you and demand payment of the outstanding amount. If you do not pay the outstanding amount, sheriff’s officers can seize your personal property and leave it with you (conditions apply), or they can seize and remove it if they think it is necessary to avoid the property being disposed of or removed.
If the amount is still outstanding after the 7 day notice period has expired, sheriff’s officers can seize, remove and sell your personal property. If you do not have any personal property, they can arrest you and release you on bail, or if you do not consent to being released on bail, they can take you to a police station.
Before executing an enforcement warrant against a company, sheriff’s officers will demand payment of the outstanding amount from the authorised representative of the company. If the authorised representative does not pay the outstanding amount, sheriff’s officers can seize, remove and sell the company’s personal property.
While you or the company has outstanding enforcement warrants, sheriff’s officers can at any time apply a wheel clamp to your vehicle, seize and sell it, or remove your number plates.
You cannot apply to recall a warrant on your court fine. However, the enforcement warrant can be recalled and cancelled by the Magistrates' Court when:
We understand some people are experiencing significant hardship because of coronavirus (COVID-19).
If you've been financially affected and you have unpaid fines, Fines Victoria can provide assistance with managing these.
Contact Fines Victoria to discuss your options and the support available.