AARTO quick facts.
The things you absolutely have to know about AARTO.
It is in your interests to know as much about AARTO and the National Road Traffic Act & Regulations as possible to ensure that you abide by the law and do not fall foul of AARTO and the points-demerit system. For this reason, we strongly recommend that you read all of the "AARTO explained" section of this site.
Below are a few quick facts that you absolutely must know about AARTO.
|There is nothing glamorous about AARTO and "fine toolkits" and the like will be of little use to you. In fact, they will probably land you in more hot water than you would like to imagine. Your only defences against the effects of AARTO are to behave yourself on the road and to get competent professional help if and when you need it.|
|AARTO does not replace the National Road Traffic Act of 1996, it merely replaces its practical enforcement and administration. It also adds a points-demerit system to driving licences.|
|Traffic fines under AARTO no longer involve summonses or warrants of arrest. Waiting for a summons to arrive as has been the practice of many motorists in the past will land you in hot water that severely affects the amount that you will have to pay.|
|You have 32 days from receipt of an AARTO infringement notice to take the 50% discount. At 33 days, 100% of the fine, as well as any other fees AARTO charges you becomes payable.|
|Paying a fine at any stage constitutes admission of guilt and the associated points will be added to your license. Nothing whatsoever compels you to simply admit guilt if you are not guilty of the infringement and you must follow the procedures if you feel that you are not guilty.|
|You absolutely cannot be arrested or detained at roadblocks for outstanding AARTO fines. Traffic authorities may not force you to pay at roadblocks since none of them are appointed as the Sheriff of the court. You must however be aware of the fact that not dealing with your infringement notices will cost you in the end.|
|Execution of Warrants of Execution can only be exercised by the Sheriff and not by police or traffic officers. If you are ever detained in any way at a roadblock on the strength of an outstanding AARTO infringement notice, this will constitute unlawful arrest.|
|Procedures for exercising your right to representation, nomination of the driver etc. have been legislated and you must follow these procedures to the letter. Do not even attempt to take short-cuts or not follow the instructions for submission of these documents. A letter will no longer suffice.|
|Any AARTO fine not issued to you in person must be issued within 40 days of the alleged offence. These must then be sent by registered post or delivered in person.|
|Not collecting registered post is not at all advisable since the Act presumes and deems that delivery has taken place after 10 days from date of posting.|
|Every driver starts off with 0 points on their license and points are accumulated to a maximum of 12 points.|
|Every point over 12 constitutes a suspension of your driving licence for 3 months. So if you accumulate 15 points for example, your driving licence will be suspended for 9 months.|
|Points that have been accumulated reduce at a rate of 1 point for every 3 months that you receive no further infringement notices. If you have accumulated 6 points, it will take you 1½ years to get back to zero.|
|There is no other way to reduce the points on your driving licence. AARTO makes no provision for driver education or errant behaviour correction in any other way than you educating yourself and staying infringement-free.|
|Driving whilst banned (your driving licence is suspended) is a criminal offence for which you will be arrested. If you are caught and arrested for this you face a hefty fine and possible imprisonment and will also receive an extra 6 demerit points - which represents a further 1½ years suspension of your license on top of it.|
|Only a court may sentence you to a fine in excess of R1500 (one thousand five hundred rand) and points over 5 points. Any traffic officer who tells you otherwise is most probably looking to solicit a bribe.|
|Corruption and paying bribes is not the answer and you must remember that if you pay a bribe to get out of a traffic fine and avoid demerit points you are as much a criminal as the person you are bribing.|
|You can get professional help from JPSA, including educational seminars and inspection of your fines. Please see our services page for more details.|