Minor Traffic offences commenced by way of a complaint and summons, can now be resolved by way of an online plea of guilty. The days of attending the bulk traffic call over and waiting to have minor traffic offences determined by a Magistrate can be avoided. The new online guilty plea form allows the Court to take into account your timely plea of guilty and other relevant factors without the need to attend in person.
Anyone wishing to plead guilty online should give thought to using the process. They need to be cautious however as to the consequences of pleading guilty before a Magistrate as many of the Hooning provisions are triggered once a plea of guilty is heard by a Magistrate.
What can proceed online?
The following offences are currently allowed for the online service:
- vehicles used on roads must be registered
- disobeying the speed limit
- driving without a licence
- drive without due care and attention.
When can the matter not proceed online?
Currently an online guilty plea is not allowed if the person has received a Notice to Appear and has not yet appeared in court. More serious offences that are to proceed upon indictment are also not allowed. The Court does not have a capacity to disqualify a driver licence if the person is not present. Accordingly if the Court considers that a licence disqualification is required they will not proceed to sentence, but instead order that you personally appear at a further date.
If you are sentenced in the Magistrates Court, whether you appear or not, you are still liable for payment of the Offender Levy. The offender levy is not part of the sentence, it is imposed in addition to any fine or sentence imposed.
The online form is located here https://www.qld.gov.au/law/court/going-to-court/submit-your-guilty-plea/
Which Courts have an online capacity?
The following magistrate courts currently have this function:
- Beaudesert Magistrates Court
- Beenleigh Magistrates Court
- Brisbane Magistrates Court
- Cleveland Magistrates Court
- Coolangatta Magistrates Court
- Goondiwindi Magistrates Court
- Holland Park Magistrates Court
- Ipswich Magistrates Court
- Pine Rivers Magistrates Court
- Redcliffe Magistrates Court
- Richlands Magistrates Court
- Sandgate Magistrates Court
- Southport Magistrates Court
- Stanthorpe Magistrates Court
- Warwick Magistrates Court
- Wynnum Magistrates Court