What happens if I do not attend court?

Jul 23 2020

If you are required to attend court and don’t show up things can go downhill very fast! First things first, always ensure your address is up to date with Roads and Maritime Services so any court documents are received at your place.

If you fail to attend court, the Police may turn up to your workplace or home and arrest you on the spot. The Court can also convict you in your absence as well as fine you significantly more than what you would have been fined if you had shown up to court. A second high range drink drive offence has a maximum fine of $5500 – imagine receiving that for not showing up to court!

We represented a client last month at Manly Court for a driving offence – who failed to attend court on her original date – she misplaced the papers and forgot. When this happens, a Magistrate usually forms a view that the accused person didn’t care and proceeds without the accused. Our client was not only convicted in her absence but also received the maximum fine – $3300. She also received a lengthy licence disqualification.

If you have a court date and are running late or realise you cannot attend, call the court as soon as possible.

We had to make a special application for our client to reappear in the same court and have her case reheard. Our client was very lucky – the Magistrate not only re-heard her matter but reduced the fine to $600 as well as reducing the licence disqualification period. Magistrates regularly do not re-hear cases unless the accused has a good reason as to why they skipped the original court date. Our client walked away very lucky!

If you have a court date and are running late or realise you cannot attend, call the court as soon as possible. If you are sick you should get a medical certificate and fax or email it to the court.

Failing to attend court is a very serious situation to be in and you should seek legal advice immediately if you or anyone you know has missed a court date.

Have you or anyone you know missed court recently or been charged with a criminal offence? With 30+ years experience & after hours meeting times to suit your busy schedule – contact Maspero Legal immediately for a confidential discussion on 02 8052 3322.