What happens if you have been charged with Careless Driving?

The offence of careless driving, which is the lesser alternative to dangerous driving, refers to conduct of a driver that fails to exercise care and attention that a reasonable driver should be exercising whilst in control of a motor vehicle. 

Careless driving is determined by an objective standard, meaning that a Magistrate makes a determination as to whether your conduct is careless rather than the prosecution being required to prove certain specific elements of this offence beyond a reasonable doubt.

Not every motor vehicle accident that occurs is a result of criminal offence such as careless driving. In some cases police may issue charges where the collision is simply the result of a legitimate accident. It is therefore important to have MK Law review the evidence against you to ensure that charges of careless driving are appropriate. 

Elements of the Offence

The prosecution must show that:

  • The accused was driving a vehicle or motor vehicle
  • The accused engaged in driving conduct that was careless in all the circumstances


Upon a finding of guilt, first time offenders are liable to a maximum fine of 12 penalty units. For a second and subsequent offence, a maximum fine of 25 penalty units.

The offence also refers to other vehicles including bicycles, electric scooters etc 

If the offence is a vehicle other than a motor vehicle, the offence is a maximum fine of 6 penalty units for a first offence and a maximum of 12 penalty units for a subsequent offence.

MK Law can provide 24/7 legal advice regarding charges of this nature by calling 1800 130 120 immediately.


Am I Facing Licence Suspension if Found Guilty?

Whilst not mandatory, the Court still has the discretion to suspend and disqualify a person’s drivers licence if found guilty of careless driving. If a Magistrate does decide to interfere with your licence, the timeframes are open to the magistrate. There is no minimum or maximum, it is as the Magistrate deems fit.

It should be noted that even if a Court does not interfere with your licence, a finding of guilt carries with it 3 demerit points automatically, which the Court or VicRoads can’t do anything about.

What Happens Next?

Careless Driving is a summary offence and is therefore heard in the summary jurisdiction of the Magistrates Court.

If you intend on pleading guilty to careless driving, the team at MK law will fight to get you a fair sentence on your behalf. We may be able to ensure you receive no conviction and ensure you keep your driver’s licence.

If your licence is important to you, it is imperative that you consider criminal law experts from MK Law to assist you to deal with this charge. Call us today on 1800 130 120 to discuss your options with our team.

MK Law - What Happens Next?


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