Falling Victim Of New NI Road Traffic Offence Levy

NI Road Traffic Offence Levy

It has been announced today that offenders who commit road traffic offences in Northern Ireland will now contribute to a fund for victims.

The Justice Minister for Northern Ireland made the announcement regarding the offender levy scheme, which was first introduced in 2012 and is now being rolled out 'to include endorsable fixed penalties issued by the PSNI and the Driver Vehicle Agency, including those issued in relation to speed cameras'.

NI Justice Minister stated 'the additional funding will provide a boost to victim and witness services'

“Victims and witnesses play a vital role in the effectiveness of the criminal justice system. It is important that they are supported by quality services, and that we continually seek to improve those services, and that those who break the law should make a contribution to improving those services.”

The offender levy compels offenders to pay into a dedicated Victims of Crime Fund as part of their sentence or fine. A £5 levy will apply to the fixed penalty.

“Road traffic offences impact on the community as a whole and have the potential to cause serious injury, or worse, death in some cases. Today’s change will further enhance the support offered by government to the victims of these crimes.”

The offender levy initiative has already raised more than £800,000 for the Victims of Crime Fund. This roll-out of the scheme could provide an additional £150,000 per year.


There is a vast difference between crime and traffic offences, even the legal system recognises this. Can it be justified to target motorists to raise yet more money?

We are by no means justifying road traffic offences but we are questioning whether they are yet again being turned into cash machines for an under performing Northern Ireland Executive.

In a week when the NI Executive has been in the spotlight over 'burn to earn' claims which allegately cost £400 million of Northern Ireland funding can it be right that the Executive are targeting motoring offences as a means of assisting victims of crime?

There are offences which occur in the car that are criminal such as drink driving and it is understood that this scheme which was introduced in 2012 already targets them:

Court imposed fines – at a fixed rate of £15

Immediate custodial sentences – at a fixed rate of £25 or £50, depending on sentence length

Is the Northern Ireland Executive on a dash for cash to increase revenue in a scheme which to date has raised over £800,000? Few people to date have objected to the scheme but as the scheme now appears to target fixed penalty notices at a fixed rate of £5 for what is in essence low level traffic offences - what do you think?

What do we think?

We think like most things that come out of this Northern Ireland Executive, it's shameful coming from a penny wise scheme targeting motorists to a pound foolish attitude towards £400 million of our money.

Please note a stock photo has been used alongside this NI News story

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