What are my chances of getting a Section 10?

What are my chances at getting a Section 10?

First offenders: What are my chances if it is my first offence?

If it is your first criminal or traffic offence, the chances of getting a Section 10 are greatly improved.

Generally, Section 10’s are only given out in summary matters, that is, charges that are dealt with in the Local Court of NSW. Also, courts generally will only give a Section 10 to an offender who has pleaded guilty at the first available opportunity. However, sometimes a court can consider the evidence at the end of a defended hearing and exercise its discretion and order a Section 10.

What types of offences can I get a Section 10 for?

There are a whole range of offences that can be dealt with by way of a Section 10. In the Local Court, some of these include:

1.   Possess Prohibited Drug;

2.   Less serious violence charges (common assault, intimidation, use carriage service to threaten etc.);

3.   Low range drink driving;

4.   Mid range drink driving;

5.   Traffic offences (if you have a good traffic record!)

and many, many others.

For more information on Section 10, and to see case studies where we have achieved Section 10 for some of our clients, click here.

Can I get a Section 10 twice?

Yes, it is possible to get a Section 10 again, if you have been dealt with by way of a Section 10 in the past. It would help if the last Section 10 that you received was more than a few years prior to the present offence, and would also help if the last offence was an offence of a different nature.

If your previous Section 10 was many years ago, your chances of getting another Section 10 will be greatly improved.

As always, it will depend on the nature and seriousness of the present offence, your personal circumstances and other matters the court will take into account in it’s sentencing exercise.

If I don’t get a Section 10, will I have a criminal record forever?

Your criminal record will remain unless you make an application for a ‘spent conviction’, after 10 years of receiving the conviction. For more information on spent convictions, click here.

If you have been convicted of the offence, after unsuccessfully asking for a Section 10, you may have the option of appealing the decision in the District Court of NSW.

For more on appeals to the District Court, click here.

Should I get a lawyer to represent me in court to apply for a Section 10?

Yes, you should always have an experienced criminal defence lawyer to represent you at court for your Section 10 application. If is your career/travel/livelihood/reputation on the line!


Call LY Lawyers, experts in Section 10 applications, on 1300 595 299 for a free consultation.