If you have received a Notice to Produce, it usually means the RMS believes that your truck was involved in a heavy vehicle offence.
The right response can make all the difference to the outcome of your case.
Our team has years of experience in heavy vehicle law, both for and against the RMS. We have helped many drivers and operators to protect their rights when responding to a Notice to Produce.
Call us to discuss the best way to respond in your case.
What is a Notice to Produce?
A Notice to Produce is a letter sent by the RMS requesting certain information and documents. It is used to gather evidence when they believe that a heavy vehicle offence has been committed.
Why have I received a Notice to Produce?
The RMS has sent you a Notice to Produce because it believes that you have information that will help their investigations.
It may be that they believe that you personally have committed an offence. Alternatively, they might be investigating another person for an offence involving a truck that is associated with you (e.g. as the owner, loader, consignor etc).
It is important to prepare your reply carefully. Any information you provide will be shown to the Court if the RMS charges you with an offence. What you say now can either help or hurt your case.
Do I have to reply to a Notice to Produce?
Legally you are required to reply to a valid Notice to Produce unless you have a reasonable excuse for not doing so. Failing to reply is a criminal offence that can be punished by fines.
It is worth noting that you only need to comply with a valid notice. There are limits to who a Notice to Produce can be sent to, when it can be sent and what information can be requested. If the RMS tries to go beyond those limits, then you don’t need to respond.
You should always seek legal advice before deciding not to provide information or documents requested in a Notice to Produce. The law is quite complex, and it is not always easy to tell if the Notice is valid or not. You don’t want to accidentally commit an offence by failing to respond to the Notice if it does turn out to be valid.
What if I don’t have everything the Notice asks for?
It is a good idea to speak to a lawyer if you don’t have everything requested in the Notice.
Usually the documents requested are ones that you are legally required to keep. Telling the RMS that you don’t have them could lead to charges for failing to keep proper records.
Although it might be tempting to fake the documents to look like you’ve complied, it is very important not to do this. You will almost certainly get into even more trouble.
Call us if you would like help preparing a response that will minimise the risk of further charges.
What will happen after I reply?
It can take several months for the RMS to complete its investigation.
One of the following will likely happen:
1. Proceedings commenced – the RMS will send you a Court Attendance Notice or Infringement Notice for the offence that they were investigating.
2. More information required – the RMS might need more information. In this case they will continue investigating and may issue more Notices to Produce.
3. Case closed – if the RMS is satisfied that no offence was committed, it will take no further action.