Broadcasting Act 2009

149.

Reminder notification and fixed payment notice.

149.— (1) An officer of the issuing agent may, if and whenever he or she thinks proper so to do, send by post or deliver personally a notification in writing (“reminder notification”) to any person whom he or she believes to keep or be in possession of a television set at a premises or specified place other than in accordance with a television licence pointing out the requirements of section 142 .

(2) Where an officer of an issuing agent has reasonable grounds for believing that a person is committing or has committed an offence under section 148 he or she may, subject to subsection (4), serve the person personally or by post with a notice (“fixed payment notice”) in the prescribed form, stating that—

( a) the person is alleged to have committed the offence, and

( b) the person may during the period of 21 days beginning on the date of the notice make to the issuing agent at the address specified in the notice a payment of the appropriate amount specified in the notice, and accompanied by the notice and evidence of having obtained a television licence in respect of a premises or specified place to which the notice relates, and

( c) a prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall not be instituted during the period specified in the notice, and—

(i) if the payment specified in the notice is made during that period, and

(ii) evidence of having obtained a valid television licence in respect of a specified premises or place to which the notice relates is given,

no prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall be instituted.

(3) Where notice is given under subsection (2)

( a) the person to whom the notice applies may, during the period specified in the notice, make to the issuing agent at the address specified in the notice the payment specified in the notice accompanied by the notice and evidence of having obtained a television licence in respect of a premises or specified place to which the notice relates,

( b) the issuing agent specified in the notice may receive the payment, issue a receipt for it and retain the money paid, and any payment received shall not be recoverable by the person who made it, and

( c) a prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall not be instituted in the period specified in the notice, and—

(i) if the payment specified is made during that period, and

(ii) evidence of having obtained a valid television licence in respect of a specified premises or place to which the notice relates is given,

no prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall be instituted.

(4) A fixed payment notice shall not be served on the person unless at least 2 reminder notifications have issued to the person and until—

( a) a period of 28 days has elapsed since the issue of the first reminder notification, and

( b) subsequent to that period, a period of 28 days has elapsed since the issue of the second reminder notification.

(5) Any payment made to the issuing agent under paragraph (a) of subsection (3) shall be paid into or disposed of for the benefit of the Exchequer in such manner as the Minister for Finance may direct.

(6) In a prosecution for an offence under section 148 the onus of proving that a payment pursuant to a notice under this section has been made lies on the defendant.

(7) In this section “the appropriate amount” means—

( a) an amount being one third of the amount of the television licence fee rounded down to the nearest whole euro amount, or

( b) where that amount is greater than one third of the maximum amount of the fine to which the person is liable on summary conviction under section 148 , such amount being not more than one third of the amount of that fine as prescribed and different amounts may be prescribed in respect of different classes of television licences.