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The Traffic Offenders Program was implemented to provide traffic offenders with the information and skills that are necessary to develop positive attitudes towards driving and developing safer driving behaviour. Magistrates have the power to refer offenders who have pleaded guilty to, or been found guilty of, a traffic offence to an approved traffic course.

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    Who is eligible for the Program?

    There are a number of programs available to offenders who are charged under the Road Transport Act 2013 (NSW) with a summary offence or an indictable offence that may be dealt with summarily.

    A person can be referred by the Local Court to a Traffic Offenders Program if:

    1. The person is a traffic offender; and
    2. The person has not been sentenced for the traffic offence; and
    3. The person enters into a written agreement to participate; and
    4. The Court considers the person a suitable candidate.
    [Criminal Procedure Amendment (Traffic Offender Intervention Program) Regulation 2007 s4.1, ‘Regulation’]

    The Court will consider the following factors to determine whether you are suitable for the program:

    1. Extent to which your character, age, health and mental condition would prevent you from effectively participating in the program;
    2. The objective seriousness of the offence committed;
    3. Whether the offence was committed as a result of extenuating circumstances;
    4. The impact of the offence on the community and the victim (if any); and
    5. Your criminal history and antecedents for other traffic offences.
    [Regulation s4.2]
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    Referring an Offender to the Program

    A lawyer is responsible for identifying the preferred course provider. This process will involve the following steps:

    1. The Local Court must determine that you are suitable to enter into the program.
    2. The Court will then make a program participation order requiring you to partake in an approved traffic course.
    3. You must then enter into a written agreement to participate in the program as a condition of bail or deferral for sentence.
    4. You must strictly comply with the requirements of the traffic course.
    [Regulation s3.1]

    Depending on what stage your court proceedings are at, the Court may either grant bail or adjourn your matter for sentencing to allow you to complete the approved program. Successful completion of the program may lead to a lesser sentence, however this is subject to the discretion of the Magistrate. Failure to comply with the course requirements as well as failing to complete the program may result in you returning to Court.

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    Course Structure

    Course Content will include:

    1. Measures to further develop and enhance your understanding on the obligations you owe to members of the public and other road users.
    2. Measures to further develop and enhance safe driving behaviour.
    3. Measures to inform you about the potential impact traffic offences can have on the victim and the community.

    Course content may also include:

    1. Drinking/drug abuse and driving
    2. Maintenance of safe vehicles.

    Approved courses contain a minimum of six (6) individual sessions and a maximum of ten (10) with each session running for a minimum of 60 minutes and a maximum of 120 minutes.

    Course providers charge fees on a cost recovery basis and not for profit with fees generally ranging from $90-$150.

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    Available Programs

    Details of the various programs available can be found at the following link. To obtain further information about a particular program or enrol you must contact the program provider directly:

    http://www.lawlink.nsw.gov.au/lawlink/local_courts/ll_localcourts.nsf/pages/lc_traffic_offenders

    The Police Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) is the largest provider of Traffic Offender Intervention Programs in New South Wales. Their courses are run one day a week for a 6-8 week period. Their program incorporates 8 sessions, with topics including: The Legal System, Dangerous Behaviours, Drug and Alcohol Accidents Outcomes and Understanding the Victim’s Perspective:

    https://www.pcycnsw.org/toip

How can Sydney Traffic Lawyers help?

Our Traffic Lawyers will carefully consider your case, advise you on all your legal options, and recommend the best way forward.

Call us now on 02 8059 7121 or contact us after hours on 0420 998 650 or text 24hrs to book an appointment with one of our solicitors.

The initial consultation is free.