Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013
Fixed payment notice.
49.—(1) Where an authorised officer has reasonable grounds for believing that a person is committing or has committed an offence under F20 [ section 18 , 51 (4) , 36 (4)(a) or 36A(a) ] , an offence referred to in section 52(1) or an offence under section 64(4) , he or she shall report this to, as the case may be, another officer of the Minister authorised by the Minister or another officer of the local authority concerned, authorised by the F21 [ chief executive ] of that local authority, in that behalf.
(2) An officer who receives a report under subsection (1), if he or she considers it appropriate, may serve on the person a notice in writing (“fixed payment notice”) stating that—
( a) the person is alleged to have committed the offence,
( b) the person may during the period of 28 days beginning on the date of the notice make to the Minister or a local authority, at the address specified in the notice, a payment of €250 (or such other amount, being an amount not exceeding €1,000, as stands specified by order made, from time to time, by the Minister and different amounts may be specified in respect of different offences) accompanied by the notice,
( c) the person is not obliged to make the payment, and
( d) a prosecution in respect of the alleged offence will not be instituted during the period specified in the notice and, if the payment specified in the notice is made during that period, no prosecution in respect of the alleged offence will be instituted.
(3) Where a fixed payment notice is served under subsection (1)—
( a) the person to whom the notice applies may, during the period specified in the notice, make to the Minister or the relevant local authority at the address specified in the notice the payment specified in the notice accompanied by the notice,
( b) the Minister or the relevant local authority may receive the payment, issue a receipt for it and retain the money so paid, and any payment so received shall not be recoverable in any circumstances 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 if the payment so specified is made during that period, no prosecution in respect of the alleged offence shall be instituted.
(4) In proceedings for an offence under this Act, the onus of proving that a payment in accordance with a fixed payment notice has been made lies on the person on whom the fixed payment notice was served.
(5) In proceedings for an offence referred to in subsection (1) it is a defence for the accused to show that he or she has made a payment in accordance with this section pursuant to a fixed payment notice issued in respect of that offence.
(6) In this section “relevant local authority” means, in relation to the commission of the alleged offence, the local authority in whose functional area the offence is alleged to have been committed.