Improper Use of Motor Vehicle

Improper Use of Motor Vehicle is found in section 65A of the Road Safety Act 1986 in Victoria. It is a criminal offence that is committed by a person who intentionally drives a motor vehicle in a way that causes its wheels to lose traction.

Have you been accused of Improper Use of Motor Vehicle?

Improper Use of Motor Vehicle
Police Interview

There is usually nothing to be gained from making a comment in a Police interview. The Police are trained in interview techniques that encourage you to reveal information that assist their case. The Police are interested in strengthening their case, not in a search for the truth.

Please call us to discuss your matter and get advice before attending any Police interview where you intend to make a comment or no-comment interview.

Pleading Not Guilty

If you are pleading not guilty in the Magistrates’ Court to an offence of improperly using a motor vehicle the matter will proceed to a contested hearing. A contest is basically a trial in the Magistrates’ Court where the Magistrate hears the evidence and decides if you are guilty or not. Our lawyers go to Court every single day and contest all driving matters. Our lawyers know how to pick apart a weak prosecution case and are expert cross examiners. We may be able to do investigations of our own on your vehicle or the accident site to find evidence that supports your version of events.

Pleading Guilty

If you are pleading guilty it is important that you engage an expert lawyer to make a plea on your behalf. A well structured and thoughtful plea can ensure that you have the best chance at receiving the minimum penalty for your offending. There is no mandatory license disqualification for this offence but the Magistrate has discretion to make orders against your license. Our lawyers deal with driving offences every day and can help you get the best sentence from the Court.


Sentencing in the Magistrates’ Courts of VictoriaSentencing Statistics Pie Chart for Improper Use of a Motor Vehicle in the Magistrates' Court of Victoria Between 2018 and 2021

Examples of Improper Use of Motor Vehicle
  • A group of friends are doing ‘donuts’ with their cars in a vacant parking lot.
  • A man is driving a car in the rain and as he turns a corner, his car slides off the road.
  • You did not intentionally lose traction of the wheels on your car.
  • You lost traction while driving during a sporting event.

There are other possible defences, depending on the circumstances surrounding the alleged offending. Each matter is unique and requires an individual approach and strategy.

Questions in cases like this
  • Can they prove that you were intentionally trying to lose traction of your wheels while driving?
  • What were you actually doing?
Maximum penalty and court that deals with this charge

The maximum penalty for Improper Use of Motor Vehicle (s65A of the Road Safety Act 1986) is a fine of 5 penalty units.

The improper use of a motor vehicle is a charge heard in the Magistrates’ Court.


The section that covers this offence is section 65A of the Road Safety Act 1986.

What is the legal definition of Improper Use of Motor Vehicle ?

A person drives a motor vehicle in a way that causes the vehicle to lose traction by one or more of the vehicle’s wheels.

“Was it deliberate?”