If you do not pay your fine by the due date on the penalty reminder notice, State Debt Recovery (SDR) can issue an overdue fine. An overdue fine means the SDR can take steps to enforce the fine.
If you do not pay the fine by the date on the overdue fine, which is usually 28 days from the date of the order, SDR can:
Your licence will usually be suspended first, and if you still do not pay within 21 days of having your licence suspended, SDR will move on to the other enforcement actions (called 'civil enforcement'). SDR will not issue a Community Service Order (CSO) until it has tried civil enforcement first. The SDR will add $40.00 or $65.00 (as at June 2016) to the fine for each of the enforcement actions that it takes.
SDR may send private debt collection companies to visit the homes of people who have unpaid overdue fines. They may talk to you about the overdue fines and discuss arrangements for paying the fine. Any payments are still made to SDR. If you are contacted by a private debt collection company and you want more information or have any concerns, see the SDR website or get
If you do not pay the amount owing in an overdue fine, SDR can direct RMS to suspend your driver's licence and cancel the registration for any car or vehicle in your name.
If your licence is suspended you cannot drive. If your vehicle registration is cancelled, you cannot drive that vehicle. There are serious penalties for driving while your licence is suspended or driving an unregistered vehicle.
If your licence is suspended or your registration is cancelled, you will usually have to pay the full amount that you owe to have your licence or registration re-instated.
You can make an application to pay your fine(s) by instalments. If SDR accepts your application and you have not previously defaulted on an instalment agreement with SDR, it may lift any licence restrictions after you make your first instalment payment.
Once you make six instalment payments, SDR must direct RMS to stop the enforcement action against you. This means your licence suspension will be lifted and your vehicle registration will be reinstated. SDR may direct RMS to give you your licence back before you have made the full six instalment payments if:
You should check with RMS that any restrictions on your licence or registration have been lifted before driving.
RMS exchanges information with licensing authorities in other states. If your licence is suspended, cancelled or disqualified in NSW you will not be able to get a licence in another state. If you have a NSW driver's licence and commit a traffic offence in another state, demerit points may be added to your NSW licence.
A Property Seizure Order allows the sheriff to seize your personal property and sell it to pay the amount you owe.
If a Property Seizure Order is issued and the sheriff is going to seize your personal property, has seized your personal property or has seized property you dispute you owe, you should get
A garnishee order allows SDR to garnish your wages or bank accounts. This means that SDR can take a part of your wages to pay the amount you owe. SDR can also take money from your bank account.
If the SDR garnishes your wages or bank account, you should get
An Examination Summons is an order that you attend a Local Court where a representative of SDR will ask you questions about your financial situation.
If you are served with an Examination Summons and do not attend court, a warrant can be issued for your arrest. If you are served with an Examination Summons you should get
If you own land in NSW, SDR can register a charge on your land. A charge on your land means that you cannot sell your land without paying the debt owed to SDR.
If SDR has registered a charge on your land, you should get
SDR can make a Community Service Order (CSO) that requires you to do community service work to pay off the fine. SDR will only make a CSO if the other enforcement procedures have been unsuccessful.
If you breach a CSO, SDR can issue a warrant for you to be arrested and sent to prison. If you have been issued with a CSO or breached a CSO, you should get
If you live in Australia but outside NSW, RMS can notify the authority responsible for driver licensing in your state or territory. If this happens, the authority could take enforcement action against you. You should get
legal advice in your state or territory if this happens to you.
If you hold a licence from another state or territory you have 'visitor driving privileges' which means you can drive in NSW on your interstate licence. If you have two or more outstanding fines in NSW for traffic or parking offences, RMS can suspend your visitor driving privileges, meaning you cannot drive in NSW.
For more information about getting a suspension of visitor driving privileges lifted, see
Unpaid fines in the 'Licence suspensions' section of this topic.