Traffic fines have become more expensive in Belgium as offenders will now also have to cover the administrative costs along with the fine itself.
Previously, these costs – €8.84 for immediate payment or an amicable settlement and €25.32 for those convicted by a police court – were settled through taxpayers’ money, but this is no longer the case, according to reports from De Standaard.
“On every letter included with the fine, it will be explained in a transparent way that the amount to be paid consists of the fine itself plus the administrative surcharge for the dossier,” according to Sharon Beavis of the FPS Finance explains.
From now on, the offender will cover all administrative costs of processing fines, including among other things, sending in the official report, which is expected to bring in an additional €15 million euros for the treasury in 2021.
The adjustment regarding this administrative surcharge is part of the Programme law of 21 June 2021, concerning the law dating from 16 March 1968 on policing road traffic, which was replaced by the Act of 29 February 1984 and last amended by the Act of 6 March 2018.
Administrative costs do not differ based on the degree of violation or the initial cost of the fine unless there is an order to pay or a conviction by the police court (for, for example, serious speeding offence or driving whilst under influence), in which case the usual €25.32 in administrative costs will now be added to the fine.
However, if the incident is challenged and this is accepted by a public prosecutor, the administrative surcharge will be cancelled, and the offender will not have to pay the surcharge or it will be refunded together with the amount already paid,” Beavis of the FPS Finance explained.