Request review of infringement

If you've received an infringement notice or penalty reminder notice, you can apply to have your infringement reviewed by WorkSafe's Internal Review Unit.

Request a review

If you've received an infringement notice or penalty reminder notice, you can apply to have your infringement reviewed by WorkSafe's Internal Review Unit.

You should apply to WorkSafe Victoria for an internal review before the final due date on the infringement notice. If you have not paid the fine or taken action before the final due date, WorkSafe will register the infringement for enforcement with Fines Victoria. Once the fine is registered, you can no longer apply for a review.

You can request a review of your infringement if you believe:

  • there were exceptional circumstances which applied at the time, or
  • the decision was contrary to law
  • you have special circumstances
  • there has been a mistake of identity
  • you were unaware of the notice

Please note:

  • you may be asked to provide evidence to support your application
  • the Internal Review Officer will make a decision on your application and advise you of the outcome in writing
  • you can withdraw your application before a decision is made

Grounds for review application

Exceptional circumstances

You can apply on the ground for exceptional circumstances if you believe that there were circumstances leading to the offence which were exceptional in nature (for example out of the ordinary, unavoidable or unexpected). This includes any circumstance that you couldn't reasonably foresee or prevent. Select this ground if you believe exceptional circumstances existed (for example medical emergencies) and you believe this should be taken into account in deciding whether it was appropriate to impose the penalty of an infringement on you. You may be asked to provide further evidence if relying on this ground.

Contrary to law

You can apply on the ground of contrary to law if you believe that the decision to issue the infringement notice was contrary to law, for example if the infringement notice is not valid, or the inspector issuing the infringement acted unlawfully, unfairly, improperly or beyond their authority in making the decision to issue the notice.

If selecting this ground for review, please provide reasons why you consider the decision to issue you with an infringement notice was unlawful. Some examples include:

  • the inspector issuing the infringement notice made a mistake in deciding to issue the notice
  • the inspector issuing the notice acted improperly or unfairly in deciding to issue the notice
  • the inspector issuing the notice was not authorised to make the decision to issue the notice
  • the infringement was not issued in accordance with procedural requirements

Special circumstances

If the infringement has been issued to a body corporate, you cannot apply for a review on the ground of special circumstances.

You can apply on the ground of having special circumstances as defined in Section 3 of the Infringements Act 2006 if you:

  • have a mental or intellectual disability, disorder, disease or illness, or
  • have a serious addiction to drugs, alcohol or a volatile substance within the meaning of the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act 1981, or
  • are homeless, or
  • are a victim of family violence within the meaning of the Family Violence Protection Act 2008

You must be able to show that there was a connection between your special circumstances and the offence.

To establish special circumstances, you must provide evidence that you had special circumstances at the time that you were issued the fine, and that your special circumstances meant that you:

  • didn't understand that your behaviour was against the law, or
  • couldn't control your behaviour (even if you knew it was against the law)

Evidence may include, for example, reports, letters, statements, submissions, statutory declarations, police reports and family violence safety notices.

If selecting this ground for review, you must provide evidence from one of the following parties to support your application:

  • a case worker, case manager or social worker
  • a general practitioner, psychiatrist or psychologist, or
  • an accredited drug treatment agency

Such documents should include:

  • the details of the practitioner (the person providing the document) including their qualifications
  • an outline of your relationship with the practitioner and how long they've known you
  • the nature, severity and duration of your condition or circumstances
  • whether you were experiencing symptoms at the time of the offence, and
  • the connection between your offence and your circumstances

Your evidence should be signed and dated within 12 months of the date of your application. You can provide evidence that is older than 12 months if it relates to a permanent condition, such as an intellectual disability.

If you apply on the ground of special circumstances, you are acknowledging that you committed the offence, but you are asking for your fine to be reviewed because of your special circumstances at the time of the offence.

Mistaken identity

You can apply on the ground of mistaken identity if you think that the infringement notice was issued to you in error. For example, you might apply on this ground if you are not the duty holder responsible for the circumstances leading to the offence. If you apply for internal review on the ground of mistaken identity, your application should include evidence supporting your view that the inspector was mistaken in their belief that you were the duty holder that committed the offence.

Person unaware of fine

You can apply on the ground of being unaware of the fine if you were unaware that the infringement notice had been issued and the notice had not been personally served on you.

If you wish to apply for a review on the grounds of a 'person unaware' you must:

  • apply within 14 days of you becoming aware of the infringement notice (you may execute a statutory declaration as evidence of the date that you became aware of the infringement notice)
  • state the grounds on which the decision should be reviewed, and
  • provide your current address for service

What happens after you apply?

WorkSafe's Internal Review Unit will consider your request for review to assess whether your application is valid within 1-5 business days and may request further information to assess your application.

If you do not provide all of the required information, your application may not be accepted.

If your application is valid and accepted, the Internal Review Unit will commence reviewing the infringement notice and provide a decision in writing within 90 days from the date it received your valid application, unless further information is requested.

Possible outcomes of a review

WorkSafe can decide to:

  • confirm the decision to issue the infringement notice
  • withdraw the infringement notice and issue an official warning instead
  • withdraw the infringement notice and take no further action against you
  • refer the matter to the Magistrates' Court
  • waive or vary any fees associated with the infringement notice
  • approve a payment arrangement

If the review decision is to confirm the decision of the inspector to issue the infringement notice, you'll receive a notice in the mail or by email to confirm:

  • WorkSafe's decision
  • how much you need to pay, and
  • when you need to pay it by