UPDATED REPORT: Demerit Systems New Excessive Charges

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It’s safe to say that the South African government is pulling out all the tricks to collect more money from South African citizens. The problem will come in when we are being charged such excessive taxes, i.e. the new NHI taxes being implemented in 2020, petrol taxes, increased sin tax etc. that South African citizens won’t be able to afford to pay. So if we don’t have money to pay all these charges we will be guilty and charged accordingly, so yeah #ImStaying to be overcharged and underpaid. If you feel like you are being ripped off by your car insurance provider check your premium against these quote with our 5-minute online quick quote:

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South Africa’s new Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) Act:

The Aarto Act was signed in as law in August 2019, to introduce the new Driving Demerit System, alongside a couple of other changes. This act was meant to make the country more efficient but its been dubbed as some kind of “nightmare” and is expected to fully implemented in 2020. BusinessTech Justice Project South Africa Chair, Howard Dembovsky said that without the regulations published last week, the Aarto Act itself is ‘basically a lame duck’. “The draft regulations provide a more complete picture which should have been available during the public consultation phases,” Dembovsky said.

In an early analysis, civil society group Outa said that the new regulations had created an ‘administrative nightmare’.

“Our initial assessment of the amended regulations is that Aarto is an administrative nightmare for both motorists accused of infringements and officials who must implement the regulations,” it said. Outa has outlined some key issues with the Aarto Act discussed below.

Expensive Driving Demerit System Penalties 

Outa reported that the new Demerit System and everything that goes with it seems to be a big money-making scheme “bullying those served with infringement notices or summonses to just pay up immediately and shut up”.

A new infringement penalty being implemented is an extra R100 charge for every infringement committed. This is not included in the fine, it’s over & above the fine amount, “and there’s no discount on it’,” Outa said. “Those who can’t afford the fines but make arrangements to pay them off (over a maximum of 10 months) are penalized by losing the discount for the fine.”

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Offenses and their Costs

The original list of infringements and offenses from 2008 (schedule 3) have been retained and there are 2055 infringements and offenses. The infringements carry up to five demerits per charge and these offenses carry six demerits each,” it said.

Outa added that the demerits system for those running fleets has changed.

“The previous version added up all the demerits linked to each vehicle in a fleet. Now the fleet operators receive the infringement notice and may send the issuing authority the details of the nominated drivers – but these must be the full details and if the operators can’t provide those, the fine and demerits automatically return to the operators.”

 Outa stated that the process from receiving a notice to challenging it is convoluted and they expect most people who receive notices to simply give up. 

“Those who rack up demerits and lose their licenses face having to pay for their own rehabilitation training; if they fail, they must wait a year before trying again.” 

“Those who pay within 28 days get a 50% discount,” it said. “Paying late or contesting fines attracts extra fees: R100 for a “courtesy letter” reminder and R100 for an enforcement order confirming the fine and demerits.

Another crazy charge that we can’t wrap our heads around is the payment you will have to make to check your infringements report. Outa reported that motorists will have to pay between R60-R240 to check their demerit infringement reports…surely this doesn’t make sense. Want to get car insurance quotes but don’t have time to do an online quote?, WhatsApp us on 083 578 7527

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E-tolls and the Driving Demerit System

Outa stated that the schedule 3 charge will be enforced for motorists that do not pay their e-tolls. “Failed to comply with the directions conveyed by a road traffic sign by using a toll road without paying the toll charge.”

“For vehicles which do not require a roadworthy certificate (think of bicycles and donkey carts) the discounted fine is R125 with no demerits, for vehicles which do require an RWC the discounted fine is R250 plus one demerit,” Outa said.

“We’ve raised this issue before as a concern that it will be used against e-toll defaulters but it’s still in the schedule.”

Stand Up For Our Country

RTIA (Road Traffic Infringement Agency) is urging all South Africans to comment on the draft regulations. If you don’t think this ‘new system’ is viable please follow the link so that we can detest the new laws. Click here.

“We welcome the continued debate generated by the promulgation of the Aarto Act and the release of the draft Regulations.

“We hope all role players would be able to submit their inputs before the expiry of the 30-day period,” RTIA Registrar Japh Chuwe said.

We think you will be interested in our article: UPDATED: Best & Worst Insurance Companies of 2019 in SA

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