In excess of two million drivers are committing offences on a daily basis by driving with expired licences, running the risk of being fined £1000 if they are caught and even more seriously, potentially rendering their motor insurance invalid.
This problem has seemingly arisen since the introduction of photocard licences in 1998, which require renewal every ten years. The DVLA do send reminders (a D798 form) to drivers whose photocard licences are due to expire, but whether or not the reminder reaches the driver depends on the DVLA having a correct, up-to-date address on file (a failure to update the DVLA following a change of address can itself also result in a fine).
The renewal process is very straightforward and can be undertaken online, by mail or at a Post Office. A fee of £20 is levied for renewal.
Old style paper licences don’t usually expire until the driver’s seventieth birthday, but Parliament has provided that paper licences will be recalled and it’s anticipated these will have been phased out completely by 2015.
For businesses operating motor fleets and those with employees who drive in the course of their employment, it’s critical that drivers are aware (through a company policy) that it is their responsibility to ensure that their two part or photocard licences are renewed and that the DVLA are updated of any changes in name, address or any other relevant information, eg, any medical conditions. It would also be advisable to keep a log of all driving licences and periodically review the same to check that no driving licences have expired as a secondary measure. The implications for a business and driver if indemnity is declined following an incident because of an expired driving licence cannot be underestimated.
If you wish to discuss the contents of this article further or would like other information in relation to driving at work policies, please contact us.