Speeding fines in Germany are set in accordance with the Federal Catalogue of Fines. The level of fine can increase where there are aggravating circumstances, such as intention. However, depending on the circumstances, they can also be decreased.
Speeding fines in Germany
The levels of fine that can be imposed for speeding in Germany are set out in the Federal Catalogue of Fines. The fines increase if there are aggravating circumstances.
They may also be decreased by the courts if a defendant presents evidence that they are suffering extraordinary financial hardship.
Judges are generally under no obligation in summary proceedings to enquire about a defendant’s financial standing. Instead, if a defendant wants to plead extraordinary financial hardship, they or their defence lawyer are expected make submissions to that effect.
There are also instances where an indication of extraordinary financial hardship can lead the court to examine the situation. These include persons who are unemployed, studying or who are paying maintenance.
It is questionable whether it can be automatically assumed that a pensioner is suffering extraordinary financial hardship. Indeed, the Higher Regional Court of Hamm held not (case ref.: 3 RBs 440/11).
Nevertheless, it is safe to say that there are many pensioners who experience similar financial conditions to those on unemployment benefit. In such circumstances, they should ensure they expressly plead extraordinary financial hardship.