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44 2004

Road Traffic Act 2004

PART 3

Fixed Charges, Penalty Points and Outsourcing

Amendments of section 2 of Act of 2002 (endorsement of penalty points).

16.— Section 2 of the Act of 2002 is amended—

(a) in subsection (5), by inserting “or a person appointed under section 103 of the Principal Act” after “Garda Síochána” and “Commissioner”, and

(b) in subsection (6), by substituting for paragraph (a) the following:

“(a) Where a person is convicted of a penalty point offence, the Minister shall be notified of the conviction by the Courts Service—

(i) in case an appeal is brought against the conviction and it is determined against the person, as soon as may be after such determination, and

(ii) in case an appeal is not brought against the conviction, as soon as may be after the expiration of the ordinary time for bringing such an appeal.”.

Amendment of section 7 of Act of 2002 (appeal against conviction for penalty points).

17.— Section 7 of the Act of 2002 is amended by substituting for subsection (4) the following:

“(4) Where an order is made under subsection (3), the Minister shall be notified by the Courts Service.”.

Outsourcing of fixed charge functions from Garda Síochána.

18.— (1) Section 103 (inserted by section 11 of the Act of 2002) of the Principal Act is amended—

(a) by substituting for subsection (1) the following:

“(1) This section applies to—

(a) such summary offences under the Road Traffic Acts 1961 to 2004 and the Roads Act 1993 as may be declared by the Minister by regulations, made after consultation with the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, to be fixed charge offences, and

(b) an offence under section 73 of the Finance Act 1976 ,

and an offence standing so declared under paragraph (a), and the offence referred to in paragraph (b), of this subsection are referred to in this section as a fixed charge offence.”,

(b) in subsection (4), by substituting for paragraph (b) the following:

“(b) the registered owner of the vehicle—

(i) being an individual was not driving or otherwise using the vehicle, or

(ii) being a body corporate or an unincorporated body of persons was not capable of driving or otherwise using the vehicle,

at the time of the commission of the alleged offence to which the notice relates,”,

(c) by inserting after subsection (6) the following:

“(6A) A notice under this section in the prescribed form—

(a) shall contain details of the manner of payment of a fixed charge, and

(b) may specify the person to whom and the place where the payment is to be made and whether the payment is to be accompanied by the notice, duly completed.”,

(d) in subsection (7) by substituting for paragraphs (b) and (c) the following:

“(b) the person may, during the period of 28 days beginning on the date of the notice, make a payment of a fixed charge as specified in the notice,

(c) if the person does not make the payment specified in paragraph (b) of this subsection, during the period so specified, the person may, during the period of 28 days beginning on the expiration of that period, make a payment of a fixed charge as specified in the notice of an amount 50 per cent greater than the prescribed amount referred to in paragraph (b) of this subsection, and”,

(e) in subsection (8) by substituting for—

(i) paragraphs (b) and (c) the following:

“(b) a person liable to be prosecuted for the offence may, during the period of 28 days beginning on the date of the notice, make a payment of a fixed charge of a prescribed amount,

(c) if the person does not make the payment specified in paragraph (b) of this subsection during the period so specified the person may, during the period of 28 days beginning on the expiration of the period specified in that paragraph, make a payment of a fixed charge of an amount 50 per cent greater than the prescribed amount referred to in paragraph (b) of this section,”,

and

(ii) paragraph (h) the following:

“(h) subject to paragraph (f) of this subsection, failure to comply with the said subsection (4) is an offence upon summary conviction of which the registered owner is liable to a fine not exceeding €1,000.”,

(f) by inserting after subsection (8) the following:

“(8A) The payment of a fixed charge shall not be accepted after the expiration of the period of 56 days beginning on the date of the notice concerned that was served or affixed under subsection (2) or served under subsection (5) of this section, as the case may be.”,

(g) in subsection (9), by substituting for paragraph (a) the following:

“(a) a person or the person to whom the notice applies may, during the period specified in the notice, as specified in the notice make a payment,”,

(h) by substituting for subsection (10) the following:

“(10) In a prosecution for a fixed charge offence it shall be presumed until the contrary is shown that—

(a) the relevant notice under this section has been served or caused to be served, and

(b) that a payment pursuant to the relevant notice under this section, accompanied by the notice, duly completed (unless the notice provides for payment without the notice accompanying the payment), has not been made.”,

and

(i) by inserting after subsection (22) the following:

“(23) (a) The Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform may, by an agreement in writing, entered into with a person, upon such terms and conditions as may be specified in the agreement, provide for the performance by that person of—

(i) the function of the Commissioner in respect of the serving of a document under subsection (5) of this section, or

(ii) any of the functions of a member of the Garda Síochána or a traffic warden under this section other than the functions specified in subsection (2) of this section.

(b) An agreement referred to in paragraph (a) of this subsection may apply to the performance of all or any of the functions to which that paragraph refers in respect of all or selected offences in respect of which this section applies.

(c) Section 14(2), (3) and (4) of the Road Traffic Act 2002 applies to any agreement entered into by the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform under paragraph (a) of this subsection.”.

(2) Regulations made under subsection (1) of section 103 of the Principal Act which are in force immediately before the commencement of the amendment effected by subsection (1)(a) continue in force after such commencement as if made under that subsection inserted by subsection (1)(a).

Driver of vehicle where registered owner is not an individual.

19.— (1) For the purposes of subsection (11) of section 103 (inserted by section 11 of the Act of 2002) of the Principal Act and subsection (10) of section 3 (inserted by section 12 of the Act of 2002) of the Act of 1975 where the registered owner of the mechanically propelled vehicle concerned does not furnish the information specified in either of those subsections and the owner is not an individual, then—

(a) where the vehicle has been registered in the State but has not been first licensed under the Regulations of 1992, the individual who applied for registration under section 131 of the Finance Act 1992 ,

(b) where the vehicle has been licensed in the State under the Regulations of 1992—

(i) subject to subparagraph (ii), the individual who most recently applied to have the vehicle licensed before the commission of the alleged offence, or

(ii) where ownership of the vehicle has been transferred from another person to the owner before the commission of the alleged offence and the registered owner as the new owner of the vehicle has not applied to have it licensed under the Regulations of 1992, the individual who signed as the new owner of the vehicle the notification of transfer of vehicle ownership under the Regulations of 1992 relating to the vehicle,

(c) where the vehicle is used under a trade licence issued under section 21 of the Finance (No. 2) Act 1992 , the individual who most recently applied for the licence before the commission of the alleged offence, or

(d) where the vehicle was the subject of a hire-purchase agreement or a letting agreement at the time of the commission of the alleged offence—

(i) the individual who was in possession of the vehicle under the agreement, or

(ii) where the person who was in possession of the vehicle under the agreement is not an individual, the individual who made the agreement with the owner for possession of the vehicle under the agreement,

is deemed to have been driving or otherwise using the vehicle at the time of the alleged offence.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1)—

(a) in relation to section 103(11) of the Principal Act, a member of the Garda Síochána, or

(b) in relation to section 3(10) of the Act of 1975, a traffic warden,

shall, at all reasonable times, have access to and may inspect and examine—

(i) the register maintained under section 131 of the Finance Act 1992 or article 22 of the Regulations of 1992,

(ii) records maintained under section 60 (as amended by section 86 of the Finance Act 1994 ) of the Finance Act 1993 , or

(iii) any documents in the possession of the registered owner relating to the vehicle concerned,

and may require such information (including information of the identity of any driver of the vehicle concerned) of the registered owner concerned or a person in his or her employment as the member or warden considers necessary.

(3) A person who, without reasonable excuse, fails to provide a member of the Garda Síochána or a traffic warden with a relevant document referred to in subsection (2)(iii) or such information as may be relevant for the purposes of this section or who provides information which is false or misleading is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding €3,000.

(4) In subsection (1)(a), (b) and (c) “individual” means—

(a) the director, manager, partner, secretary or other officer (including a member of any committee of management or other controlling authority) of a body corporate or unincorporated body of persons in whose name or on behalf of whom the application was made, or

(b) that person himself or herself, being the director, manager, partner or other officer, if he or she made the application.

(5) In this section—

“document” includes any book, record or any other written or printed material in any form including any information stored, maintained or reserved by means of any mechanical or electronic device, whether or not stored, maintained or preserved in a legible form;

“Regulations of 1992” means the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) (Amendment) Regulations 1992 (S.I. No. 385 of 1992) (as amended);

“traffic warden” means a traffic warden within the meaning of the Act of 1975.

Offence by body corporate, etc.

20.— Where an offence under section 103(8)(h) (inserted by section 17(d)(ii)) of the Principal Act or section 3(7)(h) (inserted by section 23 (c)) of the Act of 1975 is committed by a body corporate or by a person purporting to act on behalf of a body corporate or on behalf of an unincorporated body of persons and it is proved to have been so committed with the consent or connivance of or to be attributable to any wilful neglect on the part of any other person who, when the offence was committed, was, or purported to act as, a director, manager, secretary or other officer (including a member of any committee of management or other controlling authority) of such body, such other person as well as the body, or the person so purporting to act on behalf of the body, is guilty of an offence and is liable to be proceeded against and punished as if he or she were guilty of the first-mentioned offence.

Inspection of driving licences of persons charged with certain offences.

21.— The following section is substituted for section 22 of the Act of 2002:

“22.—(1) A person who it is alleged has committed an offence or has been charged with the commission of an offence under the Road Traffic Acts 1961 to 2004 other than—

(a) section 84 (inserted by section 15 of the Act of 2002), section 85 (inserted by section 16 of the Act of 2002) or section 101 of the Principal Act, or

(b) section 35 (in so far as it relates to the parking of vehicles) or section 36 of the Act of 1994,

and is due to appear before a court to answer the accusation or charge, shall on the first date he or she is due to appear before the court or on a subsequent date at the discretion of the presiding judge, produce to the Court his or her driving licence and the Court shall record whether or not the licence has been produced.

(2) A person who fails to produce his or her licence to the court in accordance with the requirements of subsection (1) is guilty of an offence.

(3) In any proceedings for an offence under subsection (2)—

(a) a certified copy of a court order in relation to an offence referred to in subsection (1), or

(b) any other form of notification certifying that the driving licence was not produced to the court as provided for in the Rules of Court,

is admissible as evidence of those facts.”.

Amendment of First Schedule to Act of 2002.

22.— The First Schedule to the Act of 2002 is amended—

(a) in Part 1, by inserting—

(i) in column (3) at reference number 9 after “Careless driving” the following:

“where the offence involves the use of a mechanically propelled vehicle”,

and

(ii) after the matter at reference number 16 the following:

17

Offence under section 51A of Road Traffic Act 1961

Driving without reasonable consideration

2

4

and

(b) in Part 4, by substituting for the matter contained in column (3) at reference number 16 the following:

“Failure to comply with certain mandatory signs”.

Amendment of section 3 of Act of 1975 (Traffic Wardens).

23.— Section 3 (inserted by section 12 of the Act of 2002) of the Act of 1975 is amended—

(a) in subsection (3), by substituting for paragraph (b) the following:

“(b) the registered owner of the vehicle—

(i) being an individual was not driving or otherwise using the vehicle, or

(ii) being a body corporate or an unincorporated body of persons was not capable of driving or otherwise using the vehicle,

at the time of the commission of the alleged offence to which the notice relates,”,

(b) by inserting after subsection (5) the following:

“(5A) (a) A notice under this section in the prescribed form may contain details of the manner of payment of a fixed charge.

(b) Notwithstanding the requirements of subsections (6), (7) and (8) of this section requiring that the payment of a fixed charge be accompanied by the notice served or affixed, as the case may be, the notice in the prescribed forms may contain details of the manner of payment of the fixed charge or without the payment being accompanied by the notice.”,

(c) in subsection (7), by substituting for paragraph (h) the following:

“(h) subject to paragraph (f) of this subsection, failure to comply with the said subsection (4) is an offence upon summary conviction of which the registered owner is liable to a fine not exceeding €1,000.”,

(d) by inserting after subsection (7) the following:

“(7A) The payment of a fixed charge shall not be accepted after the expiration of the period of 56 days beginning on the date of the notice concerned that was served or affixed under subsection (2) or served under subsection (4) of this section, as the case may be.”,

and

(e) by substituting for subsection (9) the following:

“(9) In a prosecution for a fixed charge offence it shall be presumed until the contrary is shown that—

(a) the relevant notice under this section has been served or caused to be served, and

(b) that a payment pursuant to the relevant notice under this section, accompanied by the notice, duly completed (unless the notice provides for payment without the notice accompanying the payment) has not been made.”.