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Appealing disqualification for breach of conditions

How will I be notified if I breach the conditions of my permit/licence?

If your permit or licence is cancelled for breaching conditions, you will receive a notice from the Registrar of Motor Vehicles cancelling the permit/ licence.

What is the penalty for breach of conditions?

If an appeal is not lodged a disqualification period of 6 months applies.

Can I appeal disqualification?

You can appeal against the cancellation to the Civil Division of the Magistrates Court. The application for an appeal should be lodged at the Magistrates Court nearest to where you live.

What do I have to prove to successfully appeal?

Firstly, you will need to be able to demonstrate that the loss of licence will result in 'severe and unusual' hardship to either yourself or a dependent.

Secondly, under s 81BB(4) the Crown can introduce evidence of your previous driving offences to demonstrate that you have a driving history indicating you are a safety risk to either yourself or the general public. If such evidence is introduced you must be able to show that your driving history does not prove that you pose such a risk.

What is 'severe and unusual hardship'?

A person considering an appeal must be able to demonstrate that the loss of licence will cause severe and unusual hardship to either themselves or a dependant. Suffering inconvenience will not be sufficient. To claim hardship you must show, for example, complete reliance on the licence to earn a living, an inability to travel to work or a loss of pay or a promotion opportunity.

You may be asked to prove the hardship and should, for example, take a letter from your employer explaining the consequences of losing the licence. Where there is an inability to get to work, the employer should explain that there is no flexibility in starting or finishing times, and you should obtain public transport timetables that demonstrate that it is impossible to get to work at the necessary times. If you intend claiming a loss or reduction in income you should, in addition to an employer's letter, consider preparing a budget showing the financial hardship resulting from losing the licence.

Can I drive while waiting for the appeal to be heard?

If an appeal is lodged before the cancellation of the licence takes effect, you can continue to drive until the appeal is heard. If you surrender your licence before the appeal is lodged, you cannot drive. However, once the appeal is lodged, you can drive again until the appeal is heard as the disqualification is suspended until the appeal is either decided or withdrawn. Before recommencing driving check with Service SA that the appeal documentation has been served on the Registrar of Motor Vehicles and that the disqualification has been suspended. There can be a delay of several days between lodging the appeal at court and notification of the Registrar of Motor Vehicles, so it is a good idea to confirm this before driving again.

Will I be subjected to a curfew?

The serious disqualification offence curfew is no longer imposed for drivers disqualified after 28 July 2014 and will cease to apply to drivers affected by these conditions as of 28 July 2014.

Can learner drivers appeal disqualification?

Drivers disqualified while holding a Learner's Permit cannot appeal.

Is there a limit to how many appeals I can make?

If you have appealed successfully you cannot appeal again within 5 years of the date of the appeal hearing. If you breach your conditions again, it is important to seek advice as soon as practicable after the offence is committed.

For further information see our fact sheet 'Appealing disqualification for breach of conditions'.

*Note: If, as a result of an administrative error, a notice of disqualification is not given to a person by the Registrar within 12 months, then the Registrar can not give the notice of disqualification. The Registrar can give the notice of disqualification by sending it by post.[ see s 94(1)-(2) Motor Vehicles Act 1959 (SA)].

Appealing disqualification for breach of conditions  :  Last Revised: Tue Jul 22nd 2014
The content of the Law Handbook is made available as a public service for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice. See Disclaimer for details. For free and confidential legal advice in South Australia call 1300 366 424.