The convenience of no longer having to worry about car registration stickers has brought with it a surge in unregistered and uninsured vehicle fines in New South Wales.

Ever since our registration stickers were removed from our window screens in 2013, fines for driving unregistered are said to be up from about 60,000 to 65,000 last year.  That is a dramatic increase in money going towards the payment of unnecessary fines.

Why, you ask?

One reason may be that the registration stickers no longer serve as an everyday reminder to renew your registration.  Additionally, you cannot rely on reminder notifications from Services NSW nor the the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS).  This is because Service NSW accounts have email and SMS notifications turned off by default.  Similarly, the RMS will only send reminders to drivers who have opted in to the notifications.

Sydney lawyer, Ms Clemmett says,

I received nothing in the mail, by email, or by text, to remind me that my licence expired 10 days ago…The last thing you need is the series of fines that would flow from driving an unregistered car! Or worse – having to compensate someone after an accident because you weren’t registered or insured.

NSW Police on the other hand receive instant notice. They have number plate recognition technology that immediately detects when someone is driving unregistered, and consequently uninsured. 

The most common defence to this charge is – ‘honest and reasonable mistake of fact.’  If you are considering appealing a decision or if you are charged with any other traffic offences, give our lawyers at Karim + Nicol a call on 0402 765 149.  We will give you free advice as to whether this defence applies to you. 

To save yourself any trouble, be sure to log into your online Service NSW and RMS online accounts today and update your notice preferences. To help you out we have included the links.


Fine imposed for cars

Drive or park an unregistered vehicle on a road or road related area


Drive or park an uninsured vehicle on a road or road related area


Park an unregistered trailer (not being part of a combination) on a road