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Bill is seeking damages for false traffic violation accusations.

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When drivers are stopped for the wrong reasons, they waste time, miss appointments, and spend more money.

Errant traffic police officers shall be held accountable and prohibited from misusing their authority in the future by Senate Bill No. 1976, also known as the Fair Traffic Apprehension Act.

“Motorists go through arduous procedures when disputing traffic citations issued to them, particularly if the driver is subject to a no work, no pay policy. The law proposes to give compensation for drivers of motor vehicles who are mistakenly apprehended for traffic infractions,” read the explanatory note of the bill introduced by Senator Raffy Tulfo.

For the benefit of drivers and the government, the measure intends to increase openness and accountability in the traffic enforcement system.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, Land Transportation Office, and local government entities are all included in the measure.

“Any driver of a motor vehicle apprehended by any traffic enforcement personnel may contest the traffic apprehension before the traffic adjudication board of the traffic enforcement authority to which the traffic enforcer belongs within 60 days from the date of apprehension or discovery of the same,” the bill states.

The driver has the right to seek legal counsel from the Public Attorney’s Office and the Integrated Bar of the Philippines, as well as advice and other forms of support from advocacy groups like the Road Safety Advocates of the Philippines and other non-governmental organizations that have been properly registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The driver is also allowed to record or document the traffic stop with a photo or video, and to use that recording or documentation as evidence before the traffic adjudicator.

The onus of proof is with the traffic police personnel who caught the driver; they must demonstrate this before the traffic adjudication board.

The compensation is three times what can be calculated.

If the driver was hired, the compensation would be equal to the daily wage multiplied by the number of times the driver contested the wrongful detention.

Whether the driver is unemployed, self-employed, or operating a business, the compensation is equal to the local area’s minimum salary times the number of times the driver appeared before the traffic adjudication board to fight the improper arrest.

Any traffic enforcement personnel who intentionally or negligently causes an improper traffic apprehension is subject to administrative cases, and the concerned traffic enforcement authority must initiate the proper administrative case against the at-fault personnel in accordance with current civil service laws, rules, and regulations.

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