Did you know that DVLC believe that across the UK there are over two million people with an out of date photo card driving licences? Thankfully not all of them will have their car serviced at Croft Autotech to be honest Scott and his team could not yet cope with that number every year.
Have You Checked Your Photocard Driving Licence Recently?
Even if you are pulled up for something trivial a Policeman will normally ask for details of your photo driving licence. I remember back in 1977 when I asked a car driver to produce his license at Stockton Police Station only for him to turn up with not even a provisional licence and no insurance. He was simply driving the wrong way along a one way street when I pulled him up. We did not have radios for every officer back then so we could not check immediately with computerised records like they can now.
You have probably guessed by now that I am not Scott Cheyne he would have found it a little difficult to be old enough to be in the police force nearly forty years ago. I have agreed simply to write a few articles for him on driving licences and insurance matters.
Prior to the introduction of the photocard driving licence in 1998 (and the paper version which has now gone) we had those little red book style licences which were valid till age 70. Your photocard driving licence is only for 10 years and needs to be updated then. They will ask for a new photo although it does not need to be countersigned like the first one.
If you don’t renew your photocard driving licence you face a £1,00 fine.
DVLC do not even issue reminders of your photocard licence running out. That is the main reason why there are so many un-licenced drivers nowadays. Had you realised before reading this that you could be fined up to £1,000 for not renewing it on time?
A rather confusing statement on the DVLC website apparently clarifies that if you have not renewed that photocard on time you do not lose your entitlement to drive but you could face a criminal prosecution if you do drive.
What would that criminal conviction do for your job if you drive for a living? I suspect your car insurance may also be invalidated but I am not sure it that has actually been tested in the court yet.
At one time you could have simply popped into the DVLC centre in Aberdeen and handed everything in to their very helpful staff for checking and they would have taken care of everything at a cost of £14. It is now £17 to do it by post. If you made a mistake or forgot to tick a box it gets sent back.
But even paying £17 every ten years for a new Photocard Driving Licence is cheaper than a thousand pound fine.
How to I know my photocard driving licence is still valid?
That is quite straight forward but when did you last check it? There are a number of dates printed on the licence next to that gorgeous photo of yourself but the one you want is section 4b. If that is out of date you need to act fast. Get hold of the application form from your local post office or ask Swansea for one.
What else should I check on my Photocard Driving Licence?
Two very important points
a) Direct Line Car Insurance did a survey in June 2013 and found that 2.6 million UK drivers had not amended their address on the Photocard Driving Licence when they moved home. That could lead to another thousand pound fine and a police record.
Check it today. With all the other address changes you did you might have forgotten this one.
b) Have you changed your name? That same Direct Line Insurance survey found that 3% of married women had forgotten to change the name on their Photocard Driving Licence.
Side issue. The only person who can legally drive on UK roads without a valid Photocard Driving Licence is the Queen. Incidentally she is not yet one of the registered car service customers here at Croft Autotech. If she does not register we are not in a position to remind when the next car service is going to be due.
One two minute check on these details printed on your Photocard Driving Licence could save you up to three thousand pounds. Check your wallet or purse now to be safe.
How sure are you that your Driving licence is valid? Check it now before you click away and forget it!