Elderly drivers must renew driving licence or face massive fines

Dr Hilary discusses the risks for older drivers

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Once a driver reaches 70 years of age, they must renew their driving licence with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) every three years. This comes as the DVLA are urging drivers to ensure they follow the rules or they could be hit with a massive £1,000 fine.

Recent figures show that there are now around 10 million motorists aged 70 and above in the United Kingdom.

Motorists who do not renew their licence once they have passed their 70th birthday will no longer be able to legally operate a vehicle, and will be committing a serious offence if they continue driving.

The DVLA will send people a D46P application form to their registered address around 90 days before they turn 70.

Paper copies of the form can also be obtained from the Post Office if a driver does not receive one through the post.

Drivers can also fill out the form online using the DVLA website and can do so from the beginning of the 90-day period.

They must renew their licence every three years once they pass the age of 70.

The DVLA has been vocal in ensuring all elderly drivers are signed up for a new licence, reminding them on Twitter and other social media channels.

On Twitter, it wrote: “After you turn 70, you need to renew your licence every three years. 

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“It’s easy, quick and secure to do it online,” alongside a link to the GOV.UK website.

When renewing, drivers will need an email address, an address of where they have lived for the last three years, their National Insurance number and a valid UK passport number (if they want to change the licence photo).

People can still drive while their licence is being renewed as long as they adhere to a number of rules.

This includes: they have the support of their doctor to continue driving, they had a valid licence, they only drive under the conditions of the previous licence, their application is less than a year old, their last licence wasn’t revoked or refused for medical reasons, and they’re not currently disqualified.

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Drivers who were disqualified as a high-risk offender on or after June 1, 2013, cannot drive while their licence is being renewed.

According to new data from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), the number of driving tests taken by those aged 50 and older has increased by 259 percent in the last year. 

Around 3.5 times as many tests taken by this age group in the 2021 to 2022 period, than in the previous 12 months.

It has been estimated that there will be more than one million drivers over the age of 85 on UK roads by 2025, with motoring groups calling for change to protect elderly drivers.

There are more than 134,000 drivers over the age of 90 on the road in the UK, with more than 5.7 million drivers aged over 70 – almost double the number in 2012.

Speaking previously, Julie Lennard, chief executive of the DVLA, advised drivers to use the online services for ease of access.

She said: “Drivers looking to renew their licence at 70 and over should use our online service which is secure, free of charge, and also the quickest and easiest way to transact with DVLA.

“Customers usually receive their driving licence in just five days.  Always remember to always use GOV.UK when using any of DVLA’s many online services.”

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