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The Act creating the offence usually sets out whether a fine can be imposed and the maximum fine payable. If it does not a fine may still be imposed, as long as there is good reason to do so [Sentencing Act 2017 (SA) s 25].

The court is obliged to consider the defendant's means and ability to pay in fixing the amount of the fine, and should not order a fine which would cause hardship to any dependants [Sentencing Act 2017 (SA) s 120; and Fry v Bassett (1986) 44 SASR 90].

The court is not to fix the time or the manner for payment of a pecuniary sum [Sentencing Act 2017 (SA) s 122; for those powers see Part 3 Division 2 of the Fines Enforcement and Debt Recovery Act 2017 (SA)].

The court also has the power to reduce a penalty below the minimum stated by the relevant Act where good reason exists to do so [Sentencing Act 2017 (SA) s 25]. Note however that this section does not allow the court to impose less than the mandatory minimum disqualification of licence, for example, in drink driving matters. See Alcohol, Drugs and Driving for more information.

Fines  :  Last Revised: Thu Apr 19th 2018
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