GOVT gets tough on fines, licence loss or jail
Drivers with overdue traffic fines could have their licences suspended under a new law, which would also send people with overdue fines to prison. The proposed law - the Courts and Criminal Matters Bill - introduces stiffer penalties for overdue fines.
It is before a parliamentary select committee, and is likely to become law early this year.
It is a bid to recover huge amounts of money owed and devise ways of handling people without the means or intention of repaying debt.
The bill says that if people have not made arrangements to pay their outstanding traffic fines they will be sent a warning notice informing them they have 14 days to make payment.
If the fines are not paid, they will lose their licence until they pay or a time-payment arrangement is made.
The Justice Ministry's general manager of collections, Bryre Patchell said the ministry was serious about making people pay fines and reparation.
The courts can already order compulsory deductions from wages, benefits or bank accounts.
Possessions such as cars, boats and televisions can be seized, and overdue fines can stop people from travelling overseas.