Vehicle defect and EPA notices

A defect notice is issued to a vehicle that does not meet roadworthiness requirements and registration standards.

Defect notices are issued by authorities including Victoria Police, National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR), Vehicle Safety Partners & Standards (VSPS), Safe Transport Victoria and equivalent interstate inspectors.

A vehicle issued with a defect notice can only be used for the purposes specified on the defect notice. It must not be used on a road or road-related area after the time and date specified. Its further movement to another location may be restricted by the terms on the defect notice. 

If the items on a defect notice are not rectified within 28 days from the date the defect notice was issued, the vehicle's registration may be suspended. 

If the vehicle has been repaired and the registration has not been suspended, the vehicle may be used on a road or road-related area to:

  • take it from the place of repair to a licensed tester
  • examine and test it
  • return it after it has been tested
  • take it to VicRoads to be inspected or to have the defect notice cleared.

If the registration is suspended, the vehicle is considered to be unregistered and must not be driven on the road unless it is being:

  • driven to VicRoads or to an authorised vehicle inspection centre to be inspected, or to have the defect notice cleared
  • used by a Licensed Vehicle Tester for the purpose of examination and testing.

If the action required in a defect notice has not been taken within the period specified in the notice, VicRoads may cancel the vehicle’s registration.

After fixing the defects as specified on the notice, you will be required to either get a Certificate of Roadworthiness or present the vehicle for a VicRoads inspection.

If the defect notice is issued to a heavy vehicle, a current and original Certificate of Roadworthiness (or equivalent, depending on the jurisdiction) must be provided. 

fee will apply to clear a defect notice.

Note: Vehicles that are registered interstate that have been issued with a Victorian defect notice can have it cleared at a VicRoads Customer Service Centre. If you do not have the defect notice cleared in Victoria, you will need to contact the registration authority of the state the vehicle is registered in for advice on how to clear it.  

Certificate of Roadworthiness required to clear defect notice

The Certificate of Roadworthiness must be current and valid and issued after the date and time of issue of the defect notice.

You must present the Certificate of Roadworthiness at a VicRoads Customer Service Centre. You don't need to make an appointment. VicRoads will authorise removal of the defect label when the defect notice has been cleared.

You can get a Certificate of Roadworthiness from a Roadworthy tester.

VicRoads inspection required to clear defect notice

The vehicle must be presented for inspection at a VicRoads Customer Service Centre (ensure that the Customer Service Centre chosen is able to provide the inspection for your type of vehicle). There is no need to make an appointment.  Evidence of repair (for example receipts) may need to be provided. VicRoads will authorise removal of the defect label if inspection shows the defects on the notice have been addressed. 

Self-clearing

You're responsible for assessing what parts of the vehicle require action. You don't need to get a Roadworthy Certificate or have a VicRoads inspection.

The Environment Protection Act 2017 and the Environment Protection Regulations 2021 require motor vehicles used on Victorian public roads to meet relevant emissions standards. 

If you have received an EPA Vehicle Testing Notice, your motor vehicle must be presented to an EPA- approved motor vehicle tester for testing. After testing has been conducted and deemed to be compliant, a certificate of compliance will be issued.

You must also send the Certificate of Compliance to EPA for processing to clear the notice by the due date. Email the certificate to [email protected].

NOTE: Notices issued by the EPA cannot be cleared by VicRoads.

A list of approved motor vehicle testers can be found on the EPA website. Should you wish to contact EPA or find more information, email [email protected] or click on epa.vic.gov.au

 

 

 

How do I clear an interstate defect notice?

To clear a Defect Notice issued in another state, the vehicle must be presented for inspection as directed on the Defect Notice.

When is a Certificate of Roadworthiness required to clear an interstate defect notice?

If a vehicle has been issued with an Interstate Defect Notice, check the table below to determine if a Certificate of Roadworthiness is required. You can get a Certificate of Roadworthiness from a Roadworthy tester.

If the defect notice is issued to a heavy vehicle or heavy trailer then you must get a Victorian Certificate of Roadworthiness or the equivalent issued in any Australian Jurisdiction, providing it is current, to clear the notice in Victoria. However, if the interstate defect notice is marked as a minor defect or the vehicle is required to be presented at a location listed in the right column in the table below, the defect can be cleared after examination by a VicRoads Licensed Heavy Vehicle Tester (LHVT). Following inspection, you’ll need to get a letter (on business letterhead) from the vehicle tester stating: 
  • the LHVT information including:
    • LHVT number
    • licence category (HV)
    • address of LHVT premises
  • the vehicle's details
  • the defect notice serial number
  • the state the defect notice was issued in
  • the defects listed in the defect notice
  • the statement: "I confirm that I have inspected the vehicle identified above and confirm the defects listed above have been rectified"
  • the LHVT signature and date
This letter will need to taken to a VicRoads Customer Service Centre to clear the defect.

When is a Certificate of Roadworthiness not required to clear an interstate defect notice?

If the vehicle has been inspected by an Authorised Inspection Station relevant to the state that issued the notice, or falls into the ‘Certificate of Roadworthiness not required’ category in the table below and the defect notice has been cleared with an official stamp and signed by the inspector verifying the repairs have been completed, then a Certificate of Roadworthiness is not required. The signed and stamped defect notice will need to be presented at a VicRoads Customer Service Centre to record that it has been cleared. A fee will apply to clear a defect notice.

Where to clear a Defect notice - Authorised Inspection Stations

State where defect notice was issued Certificate of Roadworthiness required. Certificate of Roadworthiness not required 
New South Wales Authorised Inspection Centre Police Station or Registry Office
Western Australia Vehicle Examination Centre Police Station
Queensland Vehicle Inspection Centre Nil
South Australia Authorised Inspection Centre Police Station
Tasmania Departmental Inspection Centre Police Station
ACT Registrar of Motor Vehicles Nil
Northern Territory Motor Vehicle Registry Police Station

You are responsible for addressing the parts of the vehicle that require action as directed. You do not need to get a Certificate of Roadworthiness or present the vehicle for inspection.

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