This is a single section from Chapter 24. Read the full chapter here.

Is the new or amended criminal offence subject to a limitation period?

The limitation periods in the Criminal Procedure Act 2011 should apply to all new criminal offences.


Section 25 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2011 provides a standard set of time limits by which a criminal prosecution must be brought after an offence is committed. The limitation periods differ subject to the category of offence and the maximum penalty that can be imposed. The most serious offences (Category 4) have no limitation period.

Legislation should not provide for a different limitation period in respect of a new criminal offence.

The time in which an agency may issue an enforcement notice for an infringement offence is limited in practice by the requirements of s 21 of the Summary Proceedings Act (which should apply to all new infringement offences). To comply with the reminder notice and court enforcement provisions in the Summary Proceedings Act, the initial infringement notice should be issued promptly and, in any event, within about 3.5 months of the date of the alleged offending.

This page was last modified on the