$2091 Expired Rego Fine. Should I Go to Court?

My wife had just had our first baby. I don't know if it was the lack of sleep or just the new busy schedule that I completely forgotten about rego.

I don't remember getting any email as well.

So I got caught driving without a rego. I was just starting up, and have very low income. I asked the officer how much is the fine and he said around $700. This is already a lot of money for us and something that I would already want to seek leniency for.

To my surprise I received 3 Penalties, all $697.
1 for unregistered, 1 for use of vehicle with tax unpaid (because no rego), and 1 for uninsured.
Totalling $2091.

I thought it was a mistake and called, they said no. With $700 I have to either choose to pay the next fortnight rent or the penalty, but $2091. I broke down.

The revenue NSW gave me a payment instalment but it is still a lot of money.

He said I won't get anything if I seek leniency. Is going to court a good option?

Outcome:
Thanks everyone. I think I get the general idea. Although I still believes that the fine is very harsh, the court may ask you for more. I can't risk another new gamble. The stickers will help, but it seems like getting people to pay fines are more lucrative. I was naive to think that grace exists in court, but the consensus here seems to be the contrary. So I will just have to suck it up and pay the fine. The payment plans do help.

closed Comments

  • +48 votes

    Too bad, pay the fine

    • +20 votes

      very low income

      User name check out, sadly.

      • +2 votes

        sad violin

    • +21 votes

      I don't remember getting any email as well.

      That's a standard response in a Royal commission.

    • +3 votes

      Crap reply man. Its so easy to not remember to pay it. They dont send anything anymore and no stickers. I have to lookup when mine are due and put them in my calendar. They should so more to remind people.

      • +8 votes

        They dont send anything anymore

        Yes they do, they send a notification. Plus you usually get notified by the insurance company that you got the 3rd party through.

        They should so more to remind people.

        Take some personal responsibility, it's your car so it is up to you to manage these things. Maybe use a google calendar, outlook or some of the other 1000 methods we have these days of remembering and notifying ourselves of tasks.

        •  

          Plus you usually get notified by the insurance company that you got the 3rd party through
          ^this

      • +3 votes

        They send you the physical registration papers. You also have the option to have email and SMS reminders (which seemed to be on by default for me). Then you would have your ctp reminder.
        If all of that somehow fails you can create your own calendar reminder (like you do) or create your own sticker.
        This really is not a RMS problem

      • +1 vote

        What are you on about??
        they send a physical reminder in the post. Youll get another one for CTP from that provider.
        Setup a online account at RMS and they will email remind you
        Download the Service NSW app (you should already have this when you do your QR code covid check ins!)
        On the app it shows all your current vehicle registrations and licences expiration due dates

        If you are looking to blame someone for being ignorant. GO look in the mirror

  • +30 votes

    Sadly forgetfulness is not a defence
    Take the payment option and pay it off,
    Pay the rego and get on with your life.

    • +38 votes

      Seriously, $2,091 fine for driving unregistered. What exact damage is being done here? Yes a fine is warranted, but $2,091. What a joke this country is sometimes. Such a brutal fine for possibly an honest mistake. Sure, if this was the offender's same multiple offences, a string of other unpaid fines, etc, but to fine someone for a first-time offence of this type, this much money is a ******* disgrace.

      • +3 votes

        There's a lot of money in registration and every state wants their slice..

      • +9 votes

        Not covered under insurance in an accident.

        •  

          This used to be the case, but the green slip levy covers everyone now, as it should be

          • +2 votes

            @Jackson: It covers everyone in case an uninsured driver is involved in an accident, not "the levy exists so don't bother with insurance". There still needs to be a disincentive for people who don't get insurance (hence the fines) or you'd see the levy go up massively.

      • +10 votes

        No compulsory third-party to cover injury to others. That's a huge deal, and why the fine is so big

      •  

        The problem is that its around 900 a year. if you dont pay and get away with it every 2-3 years you're in front, so the fine has to take care of that.
        Saying that though - rego sure is expensive. My car has barely been used during covid, but I get it, it pays for infrastructure and a host of other things - makes the world go round I guess

      • +3 votes

        The damage is if he gets in an accident he has no insurance. It is definitely deserving of a big fine, I do think the Tax fine though is taking the piss, the other two though are perrfectly reasonable.

      • +1 vote

        @TilacVIP

        As others have said, this means no CTP coverage. So if this bloke hit you, put you in a wheelchair for the rest of your life you would get nothing, zip.

    • +6 votes

      At first I thought it was year rego expiring 2091… then…

    • +7 votes

      Might have been an accident at band camp?

      •  

        Well, there was one time…

      • +2 votes

        Flutes don't work the way you think they do.

        •  

          You never heard of The Magic Flute?

          •  

            @EightImmortals: Sorry, no. I am uncultured swine.

            Might have been an accident at a grove in front of a temple?

            Fixed that for you.

      • -1 vote

        Oh good, a self nominee for sterilisation.

        • -1 vote

          Called common sense. Why start a family on the bare minumum?

    • +74 votes

      What a shitty comment and so disheartening to see it being upvoted. Yes, raising children on a low income will require a bit more hustle and grind than if you're well off, but thank f- we don't live in a world where wealth dictates someone's right to have kids without being judged for it. Kids aren't as soft as most adults - they adapt to their environment and can, and often do, become fantastic contributors to society despite having very little.

      OP, sorry to hear about your predicament and best of luck with it if you pursue the court path.

      • +6 votes

        Agree this was an absolutely shitty comment. Apart from anything else, even in this day and age accidents will happen.

      • +6 votes

        If you don't have 2 to 5k in an emergency fund, you're gonna have a bad time.

        Imagine if the OP had a car accident and was liable for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

      • +9 votes

        someone's right to have kids without being judged for it

        Why won't they be judged?

        One kid is understandable, even two. Everyone deserves the family they want.

        But what I don't get is when a "low income" couple wants 3+ kids, potentially at the taxpayer's expense. Full benefits should be capped at 2 kids and drastically reduced thereafter. Your choice, your consequences.

        Having a child isn't also about what "you" want and your desires. What about the conditions for the child?

        •  

          But the issue is that people don't have kids for the benefits, they're probably going to have the kids either way.

          Their choice, yes, but the real consequences are passed down on to the kids who had no say in the matter. It's better to keep the kids out of potential poverty, which in turn makes it more likely the kids will perform better in life and pay more taxes down the line.

          •  

            @TrulyUnicorn: Then after 2nd child, forms of cash handouts should be replaced by a welfare card attached to the ID of the parent/s. The card can only be used for necessities for the benefit of the child, nothing else. Is not transferrable, cannot be sold via any market. But amount received is still capped and lower than that received by the first 2 kids, granted that it is sufficient each year to meet the basic needs of the additional kid. This is all hypothetical of course. Not going to lie, I like the idea.

            It's better to keep the kids out of potential poverty

            I doubt that "low income" parents with 3+ kids would not be in poverty already. How do you know that taxpayer benefits are reaching the child/ren in full?

            I'm almost certain that there are sh*theads popping out kids for their self-interests, not the kid's or kids'. There's planned intent to scheme the system.

            Accidents happen and people become accidental parents, I get it. That's not who I'm talking about.

      • +3 votes

        You're critical of a mere observation, yet you've simultaneously disregarded the OP's wrongdoing and his inability to accept responsibility. Bravo.

      •  

        Why are you apologising to someone who has broken the law?

    • -2 votes

      Brought a child into this world, and on very low income… hmm

      He was fine until the child came

  • +13 votes

    The revenue NSW gave me a payment instalment but it is still alot of money.

    The instalment plan will enable you to rectify your mistake and pay rent.

    Please remember to pay the fine AND the registration.

  •  

    I think someone else asked this last week with no sympathy…

  • +8 votes

    The revenue NSW gave me a payment instalment but it is still alot of money.

    Take it as a lesson learnt, despite how the situation sucks for you.

    My wife had just had our first baby

    Focus on your family, better have setback with your car/rego than your family, you'll have a long road ahead. Enjoy being a dad.

  • +26 votes

    Sorry that this happened, but imagine if you hit and injured someone and you had no CTP. You'd be up for a lot more than $2091.

    Perhaps set a reminder in your phone for a week or two before your rego expires next year to ensure it's been paid?

    • +2 votes

      People get caught drink driving and get fined less, much less than this amount. Who is more likely to get into an accident???

      Yes, $700 [initial amount told by the office] is still alot, but lets say, a lesson you won't forget next time, but $2091????

      • +5 votes

        Worse crime than drink driving as you are hurting the state and insurance corporations

        •  

          Of course!!!

        •  

          Yeah, you technically haven't hurt anyone until you crash.

          Though I do wonder, who was hurt more, people on the roads before DUI became as serious an offence it is today, or the partners and families of alcoholics in their own homes?

        •  

          You get to keep your license if you forget your Rego.

  • +8 votes

    Is going to court a good option?

    Yes. (If was only one fine - no.) May get reduced fine and may get a softer repayment plan.

    Please provide Infringement Codes from the fine, my esteemed colleague pegaxs may review those for you.

    •  

      The one I am sus about is that stupid "tax" one. That would have to be a piss take wouldn't it??

  • +17 votes

    I feel sorry for you, I really do (I am a parent too). However, what is going to be your legal argument in a court? That you had a child and because of that they should reduce the fine?

    I am not a lawyer but that seems a bit unrealistic to me.

  • +3 votes

    🤔

    As you are in NSW, since there are no physical rego stickers on your window screen anymore, you no longer have that as a reminder…

    But, you should/could other ways to remind you… plus it's same time each year for the same car…

    1) Rego renewal in mail, ServiceNSW account

    2) CTP renewal in mail

    3) 3rd party / Comprehensive insurance due in mail.

    4) Car services company usually calls/mail to say it's 1 yr since your service.

    Being parent with newborn, the last thing you want is checking your mail… but you should have gotten reminders through other means too.

    • +3 votes

      Plus the simple one. Write your rego date on the little sticker they put on the windscreen for oil changes. Every time you check if service is due you'll be reminded.

    • +2 votes

      plus it's same time each year

      So are birthdays and anniversaries but who remembers those!

      •  

        Where there's a will, there's a way.

        On this site, we are all hunting bargains here, don’t think we need reminders. :)

        So are birthdays and anniversaries but who remembers those!

        Hence the idiom “in the doghouse”. The “punishment” helps with future remembering, or expect same post this time next year ;)

  •  

    It sounds like the best option has already been provided. Pay it off by installments.

    While I'm pretty sure this won't qualify, leniency in traffic offenses is generally about clean records not about your home circumstances. So your finances, new child, lack of sleep won't factor into it.

    How far out of the period were you? A couple of days, weeks, months?
    As mentioned they generally don't provide leniency for these fines, but the only thing I can think of is if you were only unpaid for a couple of days.

  • +2 votes

    OP, it is too late for rego but you may have other obligations.

    So, go through and find all due dates, create calendar events and set them for reminders a week / month in advance. With lack of sleep, etc, you will forget minor or major things, so its best to do it now and get in the habit of putting new deadlines in calendar on the spot.

    If you are poor, you can try calling legal aid. You could try going to court to plead for reduction as its too harsh, but I dont know how successful that can be.

    PS, vote for the political party that supports scaling fines so its less harsh on poor people. This rego fine costs a lot to you but to a billionaire, its nothing.

    • +1 vote

      vote for the political party that supports scaling fines so its less harsh on poor people.

      Which party is that? Victorian fines are brutal and sky high. And that's orchestrated by the other major political party to the one that runs NSW.

  •  

    I don't know what having a child has to do, it seems to be the go to to get out of many things. Won't garner much sympathy. If you hit someone and permanently injured them i don't think it'll hold up in court.

    Although, in your defence i feel it's a bit rough for getting pinged for 3 things. Surely it's just having no rego as it seems you can't have 1 without the other 2 the should have batched them all together and issue that as 1 fine.

    • +1 vote

      My wife had just had our first baby.

      I don't know what having a child has to do,

      Sleep exhaustion like you never imagined you'd ever feel in your life.

      Given that rego is now all online it is very easy to forget. The incredibly punitive fine is completely out of proportion to the offence.

      Sure, you may love to see people hurting, but this person never intended to commit a crime. Maybe we should be punishing people who set out to cause trouble rather than those that accidentally fall afoul of a computer program.

      Why couldn't the police officer give the driver the chance to pay the rego then and there, seeing as it is the first time? Why is Australian society so eager to see people mercilessly attacked for the most minor infraction?!

      • +2 votes

        I've got 2 kids. Was Mr Mum both times.

        I didn't have exhaustion and managed to keep my personal admin in order too. My friends seemed to achieve a similar outcome.

        Guaranteed OP has a Baby On Board sticker on the back window too

      •  

        So if you hit someone, they become a quadriplegic and you have no insurance and your defence is i have kids thats a viable excuse?

        I think $2000 in fines would be the least of your worries. I'd consider your kids future after getting sued for damages.

        • -1 vote

          Did OP hit someone? They didn't suddenly become less skilled of a driver than they were the week before.

          If you become a quadriplegic then that is tragic and Medicare should cover your health costs.

          Who is saying having children is an excuse for running into people? Having children is an excuse for forgetfulness, especially in those early weeks, when sleep is literally unobtainable. It is all about survival of the newborn and the parents.

          • +3 votes

            @DisabledUser205979: Driver skill has nothing to do with it. Accidents happen. If op had an accident, who is paying for the medical expenses of the people he hit?

          • +2 votes

            @DisabledUser205979:

            If you become a quadriplegic then that is tragic and Medicare should cover your health costs.

            And who covers the rest such as a carer, lost wages, restricted mobility for the rest of your life etc…

      • +7 votes

        Cry me a river.

      • +6 votes

        Plenty of people have had kids since cars required rego and manage to keep track of their bills. Having kids is not some rare hardship.

  • +1 vote

    If you have a completely clean driving record and you've held your licence for quite some time, it may be worth a shot to see if you can get leniency in court. If you don't have a clean record it's very unlikely.

    If I was you, I would set up a payment plan with the minimum you are able to pay each fortnight and slowly pay it off that way. More detail here https://www.revenue.nsw.gov.au/fines-and-fees/pay/payment-pl...

  • +1 vote

    If you go to court there's a good chance you'll lose, leniency for no rego is not an option, the Magistrate has heard every excuse under the sun, and as well as the fine you could be up for court costs also.

    Here in Victoria we can pay our registration by several different options including a regular automatic direct debit. I'd imagine other states have similar options

    Worth considering if writing the due date on a calendar or using a calendar apk on your phone is unsuitable.

  • +1 vote

    I don't remember getting any email as well.

    What does your inbox show?
    Did you ever receive an email?

    In VIC you get an email and 2 text reminders and then I'm guessing a message to say your vehicle is no longer registered if you fail to pay.

  • +1 vote

    If you call them to talk about your financial hardship, they can work out a pretty good payment plan for you. Similar thing happened when I was at uni. I got a $600 fine with absolutely no way of paying as I didn't even have a job.

    I was paying something like $30 a month instalments. It took a long time and I hardly even noticed the money out of my cashlow.

    Don't pay it all at once unless you can afford to.

    • +3 votes

      If you didnt have a job how did you have cashflow?

      •  

        Welfare payments maybe

      •  

        Allowance, student benefits, selling old items, ans occasionally helping out friends for a bit of drinking money.

  • +10 votes

    No rego and no insurance? No excuses

    • +3 votes

      I'd assume the fine was for no CTP insurance which he obviously wouldn't have because the car isn't registered.

  • +4 votes

    It's simple. If you can't afford insurance, you can't afford to drive.

    Sorry OP. Pay the fines and move on.

    •  

      Sounds like a traditional caste system.

      All this public outrage today over people not being able to afford the cost of living or to move into their own place in the city or to choose which bathroom they use is futile when you think there are people who can't afford to drive yet the social justice warriors are silent.

      IMO driving is more important than a roof over your head. You can at least live inside a car, but if you had a home without the ability to drive you'll quickly go downhill.

      So yeah, your post is basically like telling welfare recipients "if you can't afford your own house, you can't afford to live. Nice knowing ya"

      • -1 vote

        Typical slippery slope type argument. Ever heard of public transport?

      •  

        If you're too tired to remember to pay the bill for the 2-3 notifications you got for it… You probably shouldn't drive a car around.

        OP probably knows that, the judge probably knows that, the police officer probably knew that when OP said "sorry officer I am tired".

        Catch the train like everyone else that can't afford to drive, don't risk other peoples' livelihoods.

      •  

        caste system

        Can you please explain what you mean by this? I've never heard of this and I don't understand the context.

  • +2 votes

    On top of the usual reminders that it is due (ctp & optional insurance as well) how can you overlook such an expensive annual bill? I dread it and no matter what I fear when May comes around each year.
    All these "i forgot" posts are a bit hard to believe. The odd one may be genuine but surely not all.
    How many just try to avoid it and get caught then complain?
    Congratulations on the addition to the family but I can't see how that can cause anyone to not pay their bills.
    Pay up and learn the lesson.
    FYI neglecting to pay other bills can come with additional penalties as well such as reconnection and late fees. It it worth the little effort to keep an eye on them and save the $s.

    • +1 vote

      I dread it and no matter what I fear when May comes around each year.

      Yep, to ensure there is enough money to pay for those bills each year (at the time!). It ain't cheap for minimum with just the Rego + CTP, its ~$1000. Considering OP is "very low income", it pokes out like a sore thumb one would think.

    •  

      what I fear when May comes around each year.

      use 3 or 6 month rego + ctp…

  • +4 votes

    I love how these posts always start with some weak justification.

    I hope someone has told you how expensive kids are.

    • +3 votes

      I love how these posts always start with some weak justification.

      As common as (almost weekly) scammed on gumtree… (sigh)

  • +1 vote

    Unfortunately these things do happen and the automated number plate recognition systems the police use do work quite well, it's best to make sure important things like rego and CTP on your family car are up to date. There has been many, many instances of uninsured, unregistered drivers causing accidents and headaches for the people they take out with them which the police are really trying to crack down on.

    The road tax fine is strange though, that doesn't really get advertised here:

    https://roads-waterways.transport.nsw.gov.au/roads/demerits-...

    according to that it's just unregistered and uninsured… i'd say some police officer has decided to find the road tax one, you might be able to get it reduced to 2 fines rather than 3 but i'd be taking legal advice…

    also you can take rego and CTP in 3 month intervals, makes it a lot easier on the wallet

    • +3 votes

      Interesting, this dataset tracks the number of offences for the 3 offences you've been hit with.

      https://data.nsw.gov.au/data/dataset/formal-gipa-access-appl...

      you can see that most of the ones are issued for just unregistered, then uninsured, then the road tax one. Looks like only about 6% of uninsured fines also cop the "road tax" one. Maybe a lawyer could help out here

  • +11 votes

    Wife got hit with this 7 years ago. Same circumstances, took it to court and self represented, 2 fines where dropped and one reduced to $200. If you have the time court can be a good option

    •  

      You must have had a sympathetic magistrate who was having a great day.

      •  

        Or had a hearing just after lunchtime

        https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/lunchtime-lenienc...

        "Researchers at Ben Gurion University in Israel and Columbia University examined more than 1,000 decisions by eight Israeli judges who ruled on convicts’ parole requests. Judges granted 65 percent of requests they heard at the beginning of the day’s session and almost none at the end. Right after a snack break, approvals jumped back to 65 percent again."

    • +7 votes

      Did your wife come home a bit later that night?

  •  

    Not sure, but you may find once you enter a payment plan you can't court elect.

  •  

    Thanks everyone for your input.

    It looks like I just have to suck it up.

    Yogihogi's comment is sure a great outcome that anyone could hope for. I will have a think about it.

    Thanks again.

    •  

      Get a court date then can you update us with a time of your hearing. I would love to sit in:)

    •  

      PM me I'll help you out with your fine.

    •  

      I think you should try to get it changed to one fine instead. Seems reasonable to me.

  • +4 votes

    Only read your OP

    If it was me, I'd take it to court. Can only get better than what you have at the moment.