Types of court penalties

There are different types of monetary penalties that a court can impose, here’s the difference between them.

The court can impose different types of monetary penalties, all of them may require a different response by you. The different types include fines, costs, compensation and levies.

When should you do this?

Court imposed Fine

A magistrate may impose a fine as a penalty for a criminal offence. A fine imposed by the court is payable within 28 days. To decide the amount of a fine, the magistrate must consider your ability to pay.

Court costs

A court costs levy is a fee for having your case heard at court. If you are convicted of any offence the court will order that you pay a court costs levy of $85.00.

Victims Support Levy

Sometimes a court may impose a victims support levy if a person is convicted of some offences. The victims support levy goes into a government fund, which is used to pay financial assistance to victims of crime.

Compensation Order

If you are convicted of an offence, a Magistrate can make an order that you pay the victim an amount of money to compensate them for loss or injuries. If the court makes an order that you pay criminal compensation, you can appeal this decision. You should get legal advice quickly as you only have 28 days to lodge an appeal.

Legal costs

If you are found guilty of an offence, you may be ordered to pay the prosecutor’s legal costs.  

The amount of legal costs that you could be ordered to pay can vary from case to case. The amount depends on what the prosecutor asks for and what the magistrate thinks is just and reasonable.

infoImportant things to know


In most cases, you will only have 28 days to appeal the decision of a magistrate. You should get legal advice before you make an appeal.

Can’t afford to pay?

If you cannot afford to pay a court fine or court costs, you may be able to enter a payment arrangement or do a Work and Development Order.

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cautionPlease don’t ignore your fine

If you do not take action by the due date you may pay more and be stopped from driving or using your car.