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Prior to 28 October 2017, if you were convicted of three or more serious driving offences in the last five years, you may have been declared a Habitual Traffic Offender (HTO) by the court or the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS).
The HTO Scheme has now been abolished. You can no longer be declared a HTO, however magistrates can still impose a disqualification period.
There are two ways to remove an existing HTO declaration:
Before making an application to have your HTO declaration quashed or your driver disqualification removed, you should get legal advice about what is the best option for you.
You will need one form:
You can get a copy of the form from:
You can complete the form on a computer (by downloading a Word file and typing in the spaces provided) or you can print it out and complete it neatly in blue or black pen. The form should be printed on A4 sized paper. If there is not enough room you can attach a separate sheet of paper. To fill out the form you will need your licence number and reasons why the declaration should be quashed. You will also need to:
If you have not received a letter from RMS and you don't know which offences led to the declaration:
Instructions: Instructions for filling out an Application that a declaration as a Habitual Traffic Offender be quashed
Sample: Sample application that a declaration as a Habitual Traffic Offender be quashed.
When you have finished filling out the form, you will need to file it at the local court. The court will give you a date that your application will be heard. When you file the form, you will need to pay a fee of $99.00 (as at 1 July 2021). In some circumstances you may be able to apply to have the fee waived or postponed.
For more information about this, go to the Local Court website.
The court will then send a copy a copy of the application to the RMS and/or police prosecutors.
You will need to provide evidence to the court to support your application. The court may decide that the length of the disqualification is unfair in relation to your circumstances, and that the extra punishment is out of proportion to the seriousness of the offences. The court will take into account your driving history, your need for a licence and any special circumstances. You should get legal advice about:
Examples of what you might take to court are:
Take the original and two copies of any documents to court. The original will be kept by the court, keep one for your records and have a spare.
You will need to attend court on the date written on the form you filed. At court you will need to explain to the magistrate why you think the declaration should be quashed.
When you go to court for the mention, you will need to find the courtroom where your case will be heard. The court will usually put up a list of all the cases being heard that day. You should look for your name on the list, as it will tell you the courtroom you need to go to. If you can't find it speak to someone in the court's registry office.
When your name is called you should go and stand at the bar table (where the lawyers sit). The magistrate may ask you if you have anything to show them to support your application. If you have brought character references and other documents, you should hand these to the court officer to give to the magistrate.
The magistrate may then ask you to explain why you think the declaration should be quashed. You should explain to the magistrate:
Some magistrates may want you to give evidence and will ask you to go into the witness box. You will have to take an oath or affirmation (promise to tell the truth). The magistrate will then ask you questions.
After the magistrate has heard from you and from the prosecutor they will make their decision.
If the magistrate decides to quash your declaration, you will still have to serve out the remainder of any other licence disqualification periods before you can get your licence back. You can apply to the Attorney General to have the remainder of your licence disqualification period remitted (cancelled) or wait until you have met the offence free period requirement and apply to have a disqualification removed. For more information, see Losing your licence.
If the magistrate does not quash the declaration you can't appeal their decision, but you can make an application to the local court at another time. Before making another application, you should get legal advice to discuss if you should reapply.