Apply for a Work and Development Order (WDO)
If you're experiencing circumstances making it difficult for you to pay your fine, you may be eligible to apply for a Work Development Order (WDO).
What is a WDO?
A WDO supports you to reduce your fine by up to $1,000 a month by doing unpaid work, courses, counselling, mentoring or treatment programs.
Did you know?
Work and Development Orders (WDOs) have helped many people clear their debt and make a fresh start.
More than 87,000 people have participated in the WDO program in the last five years, clearing over $200 million of debt.
How to apply
You will need to take the following steps:
Check your eligibility
You are eligible if you meet one or more of the following criteria:
- experiencing serious financial hardship
- experiencing a mental health condition
- have an intellectual or cognitive disability
- experiencing homelessness
- experiencing an alcohol or substance use disorder
- under the age of 18
Your WDO sponsor will help you check your eligibility.
Find a WDO sponsor
To take part in a WDO, you will need to find an approved WDO sponsor such as a community organisation or a health practitioner in your local area to support you.
Your sponsor will help you through the process and will apply for the WDO on your behalf.
Find a WDO sponsor near you
Can’t find a sponsor? Call the WDO hotline on 1300 478 879 to speak with a Revenue NSW support officer.
Contact your sponsor
Once you have found a WDO sponsor online, you should call them to discuss your situation and they can get the WDO application process started if you’re eligible.
Provide documents to support your application
You’ll need to provide supporting documents to your WDO sponsor. The type of documents will vary depending on your situation but may include a letter from a health professional, Centrelink, lawyer, service provider or case worker, a copy of your pay slips or bank statements. Your WDO sponsor will help you with this.
What happens next
To participate in a WDO, both you and your WDO sponsor must agree to our terms and conditions. Here are some important rules you need to know:
If you don’t comply with your WDO and we cancel it, your overdue fines will need to be paid.
If your circumstances change and you are unable to complete the agreed activities, you must let us know as soon as possible
You must complete the activities your WDO sponsor nominates.
These activities will count toward your fine at a rate of up to $1,000 per month. You can do more than one activity, however, the maximum amount of WDO credit allowed is $1,000 per month.
|Medical/mental health treatment (including disability case management)|
|Financial or other counselling|
|Drug or alcohol treatment|
|Educational/vocational or life skills course|
|Voluntary unpaid work|
|Mentoring programs (people under 25 years)|
Cancelling or changing your WDO
We can change or cancel your WDO if:
your circumstances change or
your finances improve so that you no longer fit the eligibility criteria.
We can change or cancel a WDO if you or your approved sponsor:
fails to comply with the order or
provide false or misleading information in the application.
Before we cancel your WDO, we will first talk with your sponsor. You will also have four weeks to challenge our decision.
If you want to cancel or change your WDO
If you wish to make any changes to a WDO, you must first speak with your WDO sponsor. A change to a WDO will be considered:
if your work, treatment or the number of hours you’re spending at activities or treatment each week changes or
to include new fines.
Your sponsor can make a request to change or cancel a WDO through our online self-service portal.
When we’re considering your request to change or cancel a WDO we will:
take into account any offences you might have committed after the WDO was issued
write to you and your approved sponsor setting out our reasons
give you at least four weeks to challenge our proposal before we act.
You can access free and confidential financial or legal support or advice. See what services are available.
Our First Nations team is available to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples to manage their fines. Call the First Nations line on 1800 002 345.
Breaking the cycle of debt - case studies
Got a question or need help?
Call the Revenue NSW WDO hotline on 1300 478 879 Monday to Friday between 8.30am to 5pm.
Or log in to the relevant online portal:
Complete our feedback form