The points will work as follows:

  • The offender/infringer receives a penalty, and in addition to the penalty, they also receive the demerit points allocated to the specific offence.
  • If the demerit points exceed the maximum points (15 points), a person will be disqualified from driving or using the vehicle for a period of time (three months for every point exceeding 15 points);
  • The points for the offences and infringements range between six and one;
  • The maximum for a person or operator card or a licence disc for a juristic person who is not an operator is 15 points;
  • The maximum for a learner driver is six points;
  • The time value of each point is three months for disqualification or reduction purposes;
  • If demerit points are allocated to a person or vehicle record and no further demerit points are accrued in three months after receiving the previous demerit point, a reduction of one point on the total number of demerit points will be recorded on the system.
  • A person’s driving licence card and the operator card of a motor vehicle must be handed in for the disqualification period;
  • Upon a third disqualification, the licences will be cancelled. A person must apply for a new learner’s licence and driving licence once the disqualification period is over.

Originally passed into law in 1998, the AARTO Act has been in force for more than eleven years in the jurisdictions of the Metropolitan Municipalities of Tshwane (from 1 July 2008) and Johannesburg (from 1 November 2008).

It is now scheduled to be implemented nationally.

The draft regulations are a complete rewrite of the existing regulations.

Some notable points about the draft regulations are:

  • Removing an alleged infringer’s existing right to elect to be tried in court and replacing it with written representations, a Tribunal and eventually, an appeal or review application to the Magistrates Court.
  • Increasing the number of demerit points which may be incurred before a driving licence or operator card may be suspended from 12 to 15 and introducing demerit points on the licence discs of vehicles belonging to companies that are not operators.
  • Doubling the penalties (fines) which are currently payable.
  • Doubling the fines for failing to pay e-toll and regular toll roads while removing the demerit points from them.
  • Making it a criminal offence to drive if a driver does not possess a driving licence.
  • Correcting the previous misinformation regarding the rehabilitation programme which only becomes applicable once a person’s driving licence has been cancelled.

Included herein are Explanatory Memorandums – which have no legal effect but are meant to assist the members of the public in understanding the draft AARTO regulations and Schedule 3 on the demerit point and penalties and are for information purposes only:

Memorandum 1Draft AARTO Regulations and

Memorandum 2Draft Schedule 3 – Demerit points and Penalties .