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Drug Driving Offences

DRIVING WITH DRUG PRESENT IN BLOOD 

Driving with an illicit drug present in blood is an offence under section 111 of the Road Transport Act 2013 (NSW). This offence is a “fine only” offence, meaning there is no maximum penalty of imprisonment. The maximum fine that can be imposed for first time offenders is $1,100. Upon conviction, an automatic disqualification period of 6 months, and a minimum disqualification period of 3 months, applies.

Driving under the influence of a drug or alcohol is an offence under section 112 of the Road Transport Act 2013 (NSW). Upon conviction, a maximum penalty of 9 months imprisonment applies. The maximum fine that can be imposed for first time offenders is $2,200. Upon conviction, an automatic disqualification period of 12 months, and a minimum disqualification period of 6 months, applies.

MAXIMUM PENALTIES

Driving with illicit drug present in blood:

Maximum Fine Maximum Imprisonment Minimum Disqualification Automatic Disqualification Interlock
         
First Offence $1,100 N/A 3 months 6 months N/A
 
Second Offence $2,200 N/A 6 months 12 months N/A

Driving under the influence of a drug:

Maximum Fine Maximum Imprisonment Minimum Disqualification Automatic Disqualification Interlock
         
First Offence $3,300 18 months 12 months 3 years N/A
 
Second Offence $5,500 2 years 2 years 5 years 24 months

WILL I LOSE MY LICENCE?

Upon conviction, your licence will be disqualified. In certain circumstances, the magistrate may decide to reduce the automatic period of disqualification towards the minimum. However, the disqualification period cannot be reduced below the minimum. The only way to avoid your licence being disqualified is to avoid a conviction.

CAN I AVOID A CONVICTION?

In some circumstances, a Court can find a person guilty, however not record a conviction. For information on the sentencing options that do not involve a criminal conviction, click here: NO CONVICTION IN NSW.

However, this sentencing option is not always appropriate or attainable even if an offender has no prior criminal history. This is because a magistrate is required to take into account the following factors when considering sentencing an offender without recording a conviction:

  • The person’s character, antecedents, age, health and mental condition;
  • The trivial nature of the offence;
  • The extenuating circumstances in which the offence was committed; and
  • Any other matter that the court thinks proper to consider.

However, it is important to note that this list is not exhaustive, and simply ticking each box will not guarantee an offender avoids a conviction.

For FREE initial advice about the prospects of your matter, contact one of our criminal law specialists.

SHOULD I DO THE TRAFFIC OFFENDERS PROGRAM?

The Traffic Offenders Program is a program run for people who have committed a serious traffic offence like drink driving. It covers topics such as traffic law, dangers of alcohol and driving, lectures from ambulance officers etc.

People awaiting sentence can complete the program before their sentence. The program then produces a report and that gets sent to the Magistrate before your sentence. It will be taken into account at sentence.

The Traffic Offenders Program is an excellent program and completing it may have a significant impact at your sentence.  If you are looking for an Accredited one day  Traffic Offenders Program, contact one of our partners below:

Road Sense NSW

FREE ENQUIRY NOW