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Motor industry breaches and penalties

Unlicensed work

Unlicensed motor dealing work is against the law.

Offence Maximum penalty

Working unlicensed

$57,500.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Employing an unlicensed person

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Selling, hiring out or lending a licence

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Buying, borrowing or hiring a licence

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Dealing with licences

Serious offences

We will cancel your licence if you’re convicted of a serious offence. You will have 14 days to return your licence to us.

The maximum fine for failing to do so is $14,375.00.

Change of details

You must advise us in writing within 14 days about any changes to:

  • personal details
  • circumstances relating to your licence.

The maximum fine for failing to do so is $14,375.00.

You must also advise us within 14 days if you have:

  • changed principal place of business
  • opened or closed a place of business.

The maximum fine for failing to do so is $28,750.00.

Showing a licence on request

Offence Maximum penalty

Not showing an inspector your licence, or a copy of any staff member’s licence, on their request

$28,750.00

Not showing a client or other party (except an inspector) your licence, or a copy of any other staff member's licence, on their request

$14,375.00

Substitute licensee

You must follow the rules when appointing a substitute licensee. If you do not, you risk being fined.

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not having the consent and evidence of appointment at the office

$14,375.00

Not lodging extension of appointment substitute licence for more than 30 days

$28,750.00

Acting as licensee when a substitute appointed

$28,750.00

Person in charge

Offence Maximum penalty

Not having a licensee to be in charge of place of business

$28,750.00 (individual)

$143,750.00 (corporation)

Being a person in charge at more than one place of business

$28,750.00

Transaction register

OffenceMaximum penalty

Failing to keep transaction register

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Failing enter transactions in register within 24 hours

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Documentation

You must make sure that you:

  • complete all of your documents correctly
  • give copies to consumers when the law says you need to.

For example, you must:

  • be appointed in writing to act as an agent
  • give a copy of the appointment to the client
  • If you do not, you risk a maximum fine of $28,750.00.

Cooling-off period and statutory warranty

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not identifying a consignment sale as not subject to a cooling-off period

$14,375.00

Failing to keep copy of statement

$14,375.00

Failing to give prospective buyer statement about cooling-off period and statutory warranty in approved form

$28,750.00

Failing to give original of statement to buyer before signing contract

$28,750.00

Harassing or coercing a buyer during cooling-off period

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Failing to return trade-in or deposit when buyer cancels contract in cooling-off period

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Not identifying particular vehicles as being offered for sale without statutory warranty

$14,375.00

Not recording particulars of extension of warranty period

$14,375.00

Failing to repair defects within 14 days

$14,375.00

Dealer and seller statements

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not giving statement to buyer of vehicle

$28,750.00

Not keeping a copy of seller statement

$28,750.00

Not making a copy of seller statement available to inspector on request

$28,750.00

Written-off vehicles

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not telling the buyer that a vehicle is a written-off vehicle

$28,750.00

Not asking the buyer to sign an acknowledgement, that identifies the used vehicle as a written-off vehicle or statutory write-off

$28,750.00

Not giving (after sale of a repairable/statutory write-off vehicle) written acknowledgement to the buyer (and making a copy available to an inspector)

$28,750.00

Clear title

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not guaranteeing clear title for a motor vehicle

$28,750.00

Receipt

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not promptly issuing a motor dealer receipt

$1,437.50

Not keeping duplicate copy of motor dealer receipt

$1,437.50

Disclosure

Beneficial interest

You must advise the seller of a vehicle if you have a beneficial interest in the sale.

OffenceMaximum penalty

Obtaining (from the owner of a used motor vehicle) an option to purchase the vehicle in which the dealer has a beneficial interest.

$28,750.00 or 3 years imprisonment

Being beneficially interested in a sale, other than an option to purchase, and not obtaining the client's written agreement in the approved form

$28,750.00 or 3 years imprisonment

Being beneficially interested in a sale, other than an option to purchase, and charging commission on that sale

$28,750.00 or 3 years imprisonment

Being beneficially interested in a sale, other than an option to purchase, and not acting fairly and honestly when completing the sale

$28,750.00 or 3 years imprisonment

Private sales

OffenceMaximum penalty

Not disclosing to a potential buyer or seller of a vehicle if you are a licensed motor dealer or registered salesperson (even if buying or selling privately)

$57,500.00

Odometer tampering

Odometer tampering is an offence. You must not wind back an odometer.

You must not tamper with an odometer with the intention to misrepresent the distance the vehicle has travelled. Misrepresentation includes a reading showing that the vehicle has travelled, either:

  • less than a specified distance
  • more than a specified distance.

The maximum fine for tampering with an odometer is $28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment.

You can be charged with this offence even if you are not a motor dealer.

Trust account offences

It is in an offence to steal or misuse trust monies. You risk a fine and imprisonment if you break the law.

OffenceMaximum penalty

Wrongful conversion and false accounts

$143,750.00 or 5 years imprisonment

Unauthorised use of trust account

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Trust monies are not banked immediately (to trust account)

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Non-trust monies are banked to a trust account

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Licensee does not account to client

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Audit reports

OffenceMaximum penalty

Licensee doesn’t appoint an auditor

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Licensee doesn’t lodge audit report within time limit

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Licensee doesn’t lodge audit on ceasing to be licensee or within 2 months of carrying on business

$28,750.00 or 2 years imprisonment

Auditors

OffenceMaximum penalty

Auditor does not file advice of irregularities to Chief Executive

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Auditor fails to notify Chief Executive when denied access to other records

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Auditor fails to supply report to licensee

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Inspector's powers

Inspectors have the legal authority to make sure that you don’t break the law. You must follow their lawful directions, or you risk a fine.

OffenceMaximum penalty

Obstructing an inspector or failing to produce documents or provide information to an inspector

$28,750.00 or 1 year imprisonment

Failure to give name and address to an inspector

$7,187.50

Enforceable undertaking

An enforceable undertaking is:

  • a written promise by a business not to keep breaking the law
  • an alternative to court action.

Find out more about enforceable undertakings