Most of us have stopped paying a parking ticket at one point or another – whether guilty or innocent, they usually let you simmer with impotent rage. A disgruntled man in Adelaide tried to exact a small revenge on his board by paying a parking ticket in five to ten cents. He also recorded the entire incident on the video …
As you can see from the movie above, things did not go according to plan for the crusader shrapnel. His payment was firmly refused and no receipt was given – he practically threw away $ 60 and still has an unpaid fine in his record.
Many of the comments on the YouTube page state that the advice is illegal and that any Australian currency must be accepted. This is not actually true, however.
In fact, companies are not even forced to accept Australian banknotes, let alone lose the changes. In short, refusing to accept a payment using legal tender status is not against the law.
Here's what the Reserve Bank of Australia website says about the use of coins as legal tender currency:
A coin payment is a legal currency throughout Australia if it is made in Australian coins, but this is subject to certain restrictions on how much can be paid in money. According to the Currency Act 1965 (section 16) coins have legal tender for the payment of amounts that are limited as follows:
- not exceeding 20c if 1c and / or 2c coins are offered (these coins have been withdrawn from circulation, but still have legal tender);
- not more than $ 5 if a combination of 5c, 10c, 20c and 50c coins is offered; is
- no more than 10 times the nominal value of the currency if $ 1 or $ 2 coins are offered.
For example, if someone wants to pay a merchant with five cents coins, he can only pay up to $ 5 for five cents and more than that will not be considered legal.
On the other hand, the RBA notes that refusing to accept a legal tender to pay off an existing debt can have consequences in legal proceedings – especially if no other means of payment / settlement has been specified in advance. The guy in the video could probably find a loophole, depending on how rigorous the advice was in explaining his payment options.
Having said that, it is extremely unlikely that a judge would rule in his favor because of his obviously spiteful intentions. Also, if the video was recorded secretly (as seems to be the case), it may be in an additional hot water due to Australian privacy laws.
The reality is that businesses and advice can prepare to accept any payment method they want. If you want to launch a protest against your parking ticket, paying in silver coins is not the way to go.