Haven’t Paid Your Fines In Victoria? You Might Have To Forget About Travelling Overseas

Live in Victoria, or have been there in the recent past? Managed to pick up a fine through some sort of means? And you still haven’t paid it yet? You might have to kiss that big overseas trip goodbye until you do. A new proposal offered up by the Sentencing Advisory Council has recommended flagging the passports of people who have outstanding fines, making it impossible for them to leave the country until they pay up.

The move would apply to Local Government Infringements, as well as court fines. Every year, 700,000 fines issued in Victoria every year remain unpaid, and a whopping 40 percent of people slugged with fines through the court system simply refuse to pay up.
The proposal, it should be noted, would not apply to public transport fines issued on tram, train and buses for Myki violations, due to the fact that public transport operators are contractors, and thus fines aren’t directly Government related; though the money gained through them is returned to the Department of Transport. Bureaucratic mumbo jumbo, basically.
Restricting overseas travel for fine evaders has been backed previously by the Napthine Government after Victoria’s worst fine evader was believed to have fled the country in November of last year with 807 outstanding fines pending, coming to a grand total of a whopping $222,000. And when you look at it like that then… Yeah, this is probably fair enough.
Other recommendations put forth by the council include slashing the rate of fine for concession card holders, and introducing a HECS-style repayment system through the ATO.
Girl, are you an outstanding parking ticket? ‘Cos you got fine written all over you. Seriously, you haven’t paid them in years. I can’t let you go overseas. I don’t care if the Contiki tour won’t wait for you.
Photo: Alexander Hassenstein via Getty Images.