By John Ensor •
Published: 29 Sep 2023 • 11:22
Stock image of speed radar zone.
Receiving a traffic fine from the DGT is something that concerns all drivers from time to time. What happens if a fine remains unpaid, and are there any other options available?
If one is unfortunate enough to receive a notice of an infringement from the Spanish traffic authority, the DGT, at the very least this will likely be a financial penalty and, depending on the infraction’s severity, a potential loss of points on one’s driving license, writes 20 Minutos.
Drivers in Spain have two main options for settling a fine. The first is to pay within 20 calendar days of receiving the notice, this is the preferable course of action as it will be awarded a 50 per cent reduction on the fine amount. However, this discount doesn’t apply to severe infractions, such as using radar jammers.
Choosing the second option, paying after the initial 20 days, means forking out the full amount. But what if a driver decides not to pay at all? After 45 days, the fine is handed over to the State Public Administration Agency. Initially, the Treasury will reissue the fine with an additional 10 per cent surcharge, providing another opportunity for payment.
Ignoring this leads to a second notice, this time with a 20 per cent increase. Persistent non-payment results in a notification of seizure from the Tax Agency, targeting bank accounts, payroll, pensions, or even property. Paying promptly is evidently the wiser financial decision.
Some drivers explore various avenues to avoid paying. One common reason for appealing is incorrect data on the fine, such as discrepancies in vehicle details, i.e. the vehicle’s license plate, make, colour, or perhaps the time or the location of the incident.
Another scenario is when there’s a difference in the account of events between the driver and the traffic police. In such cases, the officer must provide corroborating evidence, which, if not ratified, can lead to the annulment of the fine.
Speeding fines are a frequent occurrence. Affected drivers should examine the details and request the speedometer verification certificate. If the certificate is outdated, the fine is automatically cancelled.
Interestingly, fines can also become time-barred if not communicated within the stipulated period, ranging between three and six months, depending on the severity of the sanction.
In conclusion, while there are methods to contest fines, avoiding payment can lead to escalating consequences. It’s advisable for drivers to stay informed and act responsibly to avoid additional financial strain.
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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