Driver identification (driver information)
In certain circumstances, the relevant authority may require the registered keeper of the vehicle to name the individual who was driving the keeper's vehicle at a specific time, or who parked the vehicle in a specific place at a specific time. Such requests are known in German as Lenkererhebung or Lenkerauskuft (driver identification) requests. Such requests can also be made if the authorities need to determine who was using a trailer at a given time.
If the registered keeper of the vehicle identifies the driver as required, this is not an admission of culpability in respect of any offence. The question of criminal liability will be determined in the ensuing administrative proceedings. These proceedings will generally be launched using a notice of prosecution(Strafverfügung).
The driver identification procedure is usually conducted in writing. In such cases, the registered keeper of the vehicle must name the driver as requested within two weeks of the request being delivered, measured by the date of the postmark on their reply. Where the registered keeper is requested to provide the relevant information orally, the registered keeper must respond immediately.
Most Austrian provinces also have a system for responding to such requests online. These systems allow the registered keeper to respond to the request as required without having to fill in and return the form sent to them by the relevant authority.
In responding to such requests, the registered keeper must disclose the name and (exact) postal address of the driver. If they are unable to provide the information requested, they must name the person/persons who can do so. That individual/those individuals will then be required to disclose the information concerned.
As the registered keeper of a motor vehicle, it is your responsibility to ensure you know who is driving/has driven your vehicle at any given time. If you need to record this information in writing, you are legally required to maintain a logbook.
It is an offence to fail to identify the driver if requested to do so, or to provide false or incomplete information. If you fail to comply, you will be liable to prosecution for failing to identify the driver when required in addition to the penalty for the road traffic offence committed by the driver.
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