Fines Victoria

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If you have serious personal issues, disorders or difficulties, it may be possible to apply for a review of your fines under Special Circumstances.

These circumstances are very specific. You can only apply if you can show that one or more of the following applies to you:

  • intellectual disability
  • mental illness or disorder
  • a serious addiction to drugs or alcohol
  • homelessness
  • family violence.

These special circumstances must also have meant that:

  • you did not understand your behaviour was against the law, or
  • you could not control your behaviour – even if you knew it was against the law.

If your fines resulted from family violence, you may be able to apply under the Family Violence Scheme

How to apply if you have special circumstances

To apply, you will need to provide supporting evidence from a qualified practitioner or agency confirming:

  • your condition or circumstance
  • how your condition or circumstances caused you to commit the offence.
Who can prepare your supporting evidence?

If you have an intellectual disability or a mental illness or disorder you will need to provide a report from your:

  • general practitioner
  • psychiatrist
  • psychologist
  • psychiatric nurse.

If you have an alcohol or drug addiction, you will need to provide a report from your:

  • general practitioner
  • case manager
  • psychiatrist
  • psychologist
  • accredited drug treatment agency
  • accredited drug counsellor.

If you are homeless, you will need to provide a report from your:

  • case worker
  • case manager
  • approved agency (e.g. the Salvation Army)
  • recognised health or community welfare service provider.

If you have been impacted by family violence, you will need to provide a report from your:

  • case worker or social worker (e.g. a specialist family violence case worker)
  • financial counsellor
  • health practitioner (e.g. general practitioner, psychologist, psychiatrist, registered occupational therapist)
  • school principal or school welfare coordinator.

If you have already applied for a review of your fine, you can make a second application under Special Circumstances.

Is there any other relevant information?

In relation to homelessness, the statement or letter must:

  • include details of current living arrangements (if any)
  • give details of period of homelessness
  • demonstrate how this circumstance contributed to your receiving an infringement notice
  • provide any additional information that may assist Fines Victoria
  • be signed and dated within the last 12 months.

When completing the statement, the following questions must also be addressed:

1. What are your current living arrangements?

  • How long have you been homeless?
  • Were you homeless at the time of the offence?

2. Has homelessness resulted in you being unable to control your conduct that constitutes the offence?

  • If so, how did the homelessness contribute to the offences?
  • Do (or did) you suffer from any other illnesses that may be relevant in determining whether you were able to control or prevent the conduct for which the infringement was issued?
  • If so, are you taking medication or undergoing any treatment or rehabilitation?
What is required in your report?

Your practitioner or agency report should include:

  • the details of the practitioner or case worker (including their qualifications)
  • an outline of your relationship with the practitioner and how long they've known you
  • the nature, severity and duration of your condition or circumstance
  • whether you were experiencing symptoms at the time of the offence
  • the connection between your offence and your circumstance.

The report must have been completed within the last 12 months. Fines Victoria may accept a report prepared outside the 12 month period if a condition is a lifetime condition (e.g. an intellectual disability).

Need help applying?

Your health practitioner or case worker can request a review on your behalf. You may also be able to access legal assistance.

For more information on Special Circumstances reviews, please call us on 1300 323 483.


 

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