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Open licence demerit points

In Australia, drivers don’t lose ‘points’ if they commit an offence. Instead, they start with zero points, and demerit points are added to their traffic record when they commit certain offences.

Demerit point limits

If you get 12 or more demerit points within a 3 year period on a Queensland open licence, you’ll be sent an 'Accumulation of demerit points – notice to choose'.

This notice will require you to choose to either:

  • have your open licence suspended for a requisite period
  • agree to continue driving under a period of good driving behaviour for 1 year.

You may receive a warning letter when you get 7 or more demerit points in a 3 year period.

Choosing a good driving behaviour period

If you choose to continue driving under a good driving behaviour period for 1 year, you can keep your current licence.

To choose this option, you must notify us by the due date stated on the 'Accumulation of demerit points – notice to choose'.

Your good driving behaviour period will start from the date you select, which must be between the current date and choice date.

If you get 2 or more demerit points during the good driving behaviour period, your licence will be suspended for double the suspension period that would have applied if you had chosen the suspension period originally (e.g. for an original 4 month suspension, your new licence suspension will be 8 months).

If you don’t nominate an option by the choice date, your licence will automatically be suspended for the stated period and will start the day after the choice date outlined on the 'Accumulation of demerit points – notice to choose'.

Choosing a suspension period

The suspension period for an open licence depends on the number of points you get within a 3 year period:

  • 12–15 demerit points = 3 month suspension
  • 16–19 demerit points = 4 month suspension
  • 20 or more demerit points = 5 month suspension.

To nominate your choice of a licence suspension, notify us by the choice date stated on the 'Accumulation of demerit points – notice to choose'.

The suspension will start from the date you select, which must be between the current date and choice date.

If you don’t select a start date by the choice date, your licence suspension will start the day after the choice date.

If you’re found driving while suspended, you’ll be charged with unlicensed driving and need to appear in court.

Notifying us of your choice

To notify us of your choice, either:

Special hardship orders

You may be eligible to apply for a special hardship order if a licence suspension would cause extreme hardship to you and your family. A special hardship order is a court order that allows a suspended driver to drive under restricted and specific circumstances.

Read more about special hardship orders.

Last updated
16 March 2018
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