Fixed Monetary Penalties: Procedure
331.Paragraph 3 provides that where administrators have the power to issue fixed monetary penalty notices the regulations must set out the procedure as prescribed in this paragraph.
332.Sub-paragraph (1)(a) provides that before the administrator can impose a penalty they must first issue a 'notice of intent'. The notice must offer the person served the opportunity to either pay the penalty or make representations or objections within a specified time which in both cases must be no more than 28 days of when the notice was received (see sub-paragraphs (2)(e) and (f)). The notice must include the information as set out in sub-paragraphs (2)(a) to (f).
333.Under sub-paragraph (1)(b) the person served may discharge liability for the penalty by making a payment which may be less than or equal to the amount of the penalty. This would allow the administrator to offer a discount for early payment. If a payment is made no further action will be taken.
334.Under sub-paragraph (1)(c) the person served may make written representations and objections against the penalty. At the end of the specified time period, the administrator, having considered the representations or objections decides whether they impose the fixed monetary penalty. If they are still of the view that the penalty is due they may issue a “final notice”. The final notice must include the information in sub-paragraphs (4)(a) to (f). If they decide to withdraw the penalty notice then under paragraph 3(3) they must explain why they have decided not to impose the penalty.
335.Sub-paragraph (5) sets out the circumstances in which a person served may appeal against a final notice. (See paragraph 10 for appeal procedure.)
336.Paragraph 4 provides that the regulations may give an administrator the power to impose, by notice, one or more requirements ("discretionary requirements") on a person. “Discretionary requirements” are defined in sub-paragraph (3) as:
the payment of a monetary penalty of an amount that the administrator will determine (“variable monetary penalty”);
to take such steps as may be specified by an administrator within such time period as the administrator may specify to ensure that the incident of non-compliance does not continue or recur (“non-monetary discretionary requirement”).
337.Sub-paragraph (2) specifies the standard of proof that must be applied by the administrators when deciding whether there has been a breach of the regulations. Under sub-paragraph (5) the regulations must provide that variable monetary penalties are capped to a maximum amount to be specified in, or determined in accordance with, the regulations.