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Increase to Commonwealth penalty unit value from $180 to $210

With an increase in penalties from 1 July 2017 Tim Duggan, our National Customs & Forwarding Manager, provdes this update on the Customs Act Infringement Notice Scheme.

The Customs Act and Assiciated Regultaions have a number of offences which are managed in a number of ways by The Australian Border Force (ABF) to ensure compliance.  These include education, warning letters, infringements, suspension or cancellation of Department issued licences and/or prosecution.

Where an alleged breach has occurred, the ABF will decide on the treatment to impose on an entity based on (among other things) the nature of the offence, the seriousness of the breach and the compliance history of the person or organisation. The Infringement Notice Scheme (INS) is an administrative enforcement remedy that the ABF may use in certain circumstances. The ABF recently issued this notice on the INS (Understanding the Customs Act Infringement Notice Scheme).  

In the notice the ABF forewarn of the increase in penaity unit value from $180 to $210 that has now come into effect on 1 July 2017.

The maximum INS penalty is 25% of the penalty a court may impose on a person. There is an additional limit if the offence penalty is calculated using penalty units the maximum INS penalty is:

  • 15 penalty units for a person, except body corporate entities (now $3,150)
  • 75 penalty units for a body corporate (now $15,750)

In the event that you are issued with an INS please contact your Account Manager, Customer Service Representave or me before making any payment or admission to ABF to ensure that you have no remedial action available.

Tim Duggan
National Customs & Forwarding Manager