Penalty notice

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Envelope of a formal delivery of a fine notice for a traffic offense .

By the penalty notice is in Germany , the penalty proceedings concluded with the payment of a fine and possibly side effects "preliminary". A notice of fines prevents any criminal prosecution.

The notice of the fine becomes effective upon delivery. However, it only becomes final if no objection is made within the objection period.

The notice of the fine contains

  • the details of the person concerned and any secondary stakeholders,
  • the name and address of defense counsel,
  • the description of the offense that the person concerned is charged with, the time and place of its commission, the legal characteristics of the administrative offense and the fine regulations applied,
  • the evidence,
  • the fine and the side effects, e.g. B. the arrangement of a driving ban.

No further justification is required.

The notice of the fine must contain information that

  • it becomes legally binding and enforceable if no objection is filed according to § 67 OWiG ,
  • In the event of an objection, a decision that is more disadvantageous for the person concerned can be made,
  • the person concerned no later than two weeks after legal force or a certain later due date ( § 18 OWiG)
    • has to pay the fine or the specific partial amounts to the competent fund or
    • in the event of the insolvency of the person concerned, the enforcement authority ( Section 92 OWiG) must be shown in writing or in writing, why he cannot be expected to make timely payment according to his economic circumstances, and
  • Erzwingungshaft ( § 96 OWiG) can be arranged, the inability to pay is established when neither paid yet.

In Austria , the penalty notice is equivalent to a penalty order .

Statute of limitations

A distinction must be made between:

  • Statute of limitations
  • Enforcement statute of limitations

Accordingly, the period for prosecuting an administrative offense according to Section 26 Paragraph 3 StVG expires after three months. This means that the authorities must issue the fine within these three months and then have delivered it within two weeks. Sometimes this limitation period also interrupts. This can only happen once. The notice of the fine expires after six months at the latest. An interruption of the statute of limitations can occur, for example, if the authority sends out the hearing sheet, which usually arrives at the person concerned before the actual notice of the fine. The so-called witness questionnaire is an exception; it does not interrupt the statute of limitations.

The absolute statute of limitations for an administrative offense again only takes place after two years. This is the case, for example, if the offense led to a lawsuit. Alcohol and drug offenses are another special case. They have a limitation period of 2 years.

The prosecution of other administrative offenses (outside of road traffic) becomes statute-barred after 6 months to 3 years depending on the amount of the threatened fine ( Section 31 OWiG).

There is also the statute of limitations on enforcement. It also runs much longer. In § 34 OWiG it is therefore stipulated that

  • the statute of limitations occurs in three years if the fine is up to 1,000 euros and
  • the statute of limitations occurs in five years if the fine is more than 1,000 euros.

Unpaid fines can be enforced until the statute of limitations has expired. The arrangement of Erzwingungshaft is possible.

Individual evidence

  1. ↑ Administrative penalty notice - information on costs and effectiveness