How You Could Get Money Back From Invalid Covid Fines

The Redfern Legal Centre (RLC)has taken a stand in the Supreme Court, aiming to declare 29,000 COVID fines invalid.

This case revolves around a 37-year-old woman who, amidst the 2021 lockdown, found herself living in a van. 

She was slapped with a hefty $3,000 fine when caught near the Victorian border, simply seeking a safe refuge at a friend’s place.

Now, if the court deems her fine invalid, the ripple effect could extend to all fines issued under similar circumstances.

On today’s episode of This Arvo In Sydney, we talked to Samantha Lee, a Senior Solicitor at Redfern Legal Centre, to find out on what grounds are the fines being challenged? What happens if you have already paid the fine?

Last November, 33,121 of the 62,138 fines were withdrawn after the Revenue NSW conceded they were not valid.

Ms Lee said that individuals who worked off their fines might have the option of participating in a class action to seek compensation for their time.

Covid fines are very expensive. They were for $1,000, $3,000 or $5,000. For example, our client was homeless and really cannot afford a $3,000 fine,”

Ms Lee said.

She said most fines were issued to those in lower socioeconomic areas or to areas with high First Nations populations.

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Ms Lee acknowledged that making the Revenue and the NSW government withdraw all the other funds for the 29,000 fines could be challenging.

There’s now around 29,000 Covid fines still remaining. When they say remaining, people have either paid or part-paid or worked off the fine.”

Hosted by Sacha Barbour, This Arvo in Sydney is a 10 to 12 minute daily news podcast made just for Sydney! Listen now on the Listnr app.