Get Legal Advice From Our Traffic Lawyers
Traffic law can seem simple at first glance, but can often be tricky and difficult to truly understand. Traffic violations are dealt with differently and you should contact a traffic lawyer for advice.
Our Perth traffic lawyers can assist you with any driving charges, including:
- Drink driving (DUI)
- Drug driving
- Refusing a breath test
- Careless driving
- Dangerous driving
- Reckless driving
- Careless or dangerous driving causing Bodily Harm
- Careless or dangerous driving causing Grievous Bodily Harm
- Careless or dangerous driving causing Death
- Failing to stop when called upon by police to do so (police pursuit)
- Driving without a licence
Traffic Offences – FAQs
I have been charged with drink driving. Do I need a lawyer?
If you are caught driving with a blood alcohol limit above the legal limit, you will get charged with a traffic offence that will be dealt with in the Magistrates Court.
Depending on the blood alcohol limit, you may receive a mandatory licence disqualification and penalty that can range from a fine to imprisonment. If you are in court for the first time with a drink driving offence, you will most likely be given a fine. However, if you have several drink driving offences, then you may be sentenced to imprisonment.
If you are stopped by police and asked to do a breath test, it is important to remember when your last drink was. This is because blood alcohol readings can be calculated back depending on the time of your last drink, which can affect your reading and whether or not you are charged.
You should speak to an experienced drink driving lawyer in Perth to obtain advice as to the consequences of a conviction for your specific matter. Our Perth-based traffic lawyers can help.
Your defence lawyer will be able to represent you in court for a sentencing or trial.
Is it an offence to refuse a breath test?
Yes, it is an offence to refuse to do a breath test if you are asked by police. Refusing to provide a sample of breath can result in a fine and a licence disqualification.
Roadside disqualification notices (of 2 months) will be issued for charges of Excess 0.08, DUI and failing to comply with a breath test. This means the police will immediately disqualify your licence, and you will be unable to drive home.
In some circumstances, you will be required to participate in the Alcohol Interlock Scheme before being able to drive again, which will require you to install a device in your vehicle to monitor your breath for alcohol.
Will I lose my licence?
Most common traffic offences carry mandatory minimum licence disqualifications.
For those charges, it is important to explain your case properly to the Magistrate in order to persuade the Magistrate to impose the minimum or near minimum licence disqualification. A traffic lawyer will know how to best put your case forward.
Will my car be confiscated?
This will depend on your conviction and whether you have any previous convictions for similar offending.
The police must make an application to the Court for the car to be confiscated, and the decision will be up to the Magistrate or Judge.
If you would like to challenge your car being confiscated, you will need to satisfy the court that it would cause severe financial or physical hardship to you.
If you do not own the car, then you may make the case that it would cause severe hardship to the owner of the car.
Can I dispute a speeding fine?
Yes. If you dispute that you were going at that speed, you can elect to have the matter determined by the court.
Normally, you will need to obtain expert evidence to show that:
- The police equipment used to measure the speed was not operating correctly
- Your car was incapable of driving at the speed alleged
Without expert evidence, it is difficult to defend a speeding charge as it is generally accepted that speed cameras and equipment used to measure speed are operating correctly as they are regularly calibrated.
I have a lifetime licence disqualification. Can this be removed?
Yes. You will need to wait a period of 10 years. Once the waiting period has passed, you will need to make an application to the court for the disqualification to be removed.
You should speak to one of our Perth traffic lawyers about making an application to the court for the removal of a disqualification. The application requires an application form, a detailed affidavit, supporting documents and a court hearing, all of which a traffic lawyer can advise you on.
The application also involves a filing fee imposed by the court.
Extraordinary Driver’s Licence (EDL)
I have lost my licence. Can I apply for an EDL (extraordinary driver’s licence)?
If you have lost your licence because you have been disqualified by a court, then you can apply for an EDL if you meet the criteria and if you have waited the necessary wait time.
You cannot apply for an extraordinary licence if:
- You have been given a roadside licence disqualification by police and you are currently serving that disqualification
- Your licence is suspended because you have unpaid fines
- You lost your licence because you have lost all of your demerit points
- Your licence is disqualified in another State
You should speak to you traffic lawyer to discuss if you are eligible to apply for an EDL.
Can I apply for an EDL right away?
No. The minimum wait time to be able to lodge your application is 21 days, plus a minimum of 14 days to have your matter listed in court. The wait time is longer for more serious offences, or for repeat offences. This wait time may be reduced by time served on a roadside disqualification.
You should speak to your traffic lawyer to discuss when you can apply for an EDL.
What do I need to prove to get an EDL?
You must be able to prove that without a licence, you or your family will suffer one or more of the below:
- Unable to access urgent medical treatment
- Deprivation of your principal means of obtaining income (financial difficulty)
- Deprivation of the only practical means of travelling to and from a place of employment
It is important to do the EDL application correctly the first time so that you have a good chance of getting the licence.
If your application is refused, you will have to wait months before you can apply again. For some people, 6 months may be a very long time and may cause you to lose your job, or it may be the length of the whole disqualification period.
Therefore, it is important that you have legal advice about how to present your case properly and ways to strengthen your application.
I have lost all of my demerit points. Can I get an EDL?
No. An extraordinary licence is only for cases where your licence has been disqualified by a court.
Can I drive anywhere and anytime with an EDL?
No. An extraordinary licence will only allow you to drive on certain days, at certain times, in certain places and only for specific purposes.
For example, if you need a licence for your work, you will only be able to drive to and from work, or in the course of your work, and this will be limited to the days, hours and locations required for your work. You will be unable to make detours or drive for other purposes, such as grocery shopping.
You will likely be required to keep a log book, and you must record your trips and the purpose for each trip. The police can stop you and check that you are complying with the conditions of your licence.
If you breach your EDL conditions, you may be charged with an offence, and your EDL can be cancelled.