Road Traffic Offenders (Surrender of Driving Licences Etc) (No. 2) Bill

Explanatory Notes

Policy background

3 The proposals are to update the law in relation to the production and surrender of driving licences, making changes principally to the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 ("RTOA") and to the Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act 1995 ("NDA"), with consequential adjustment of other statutes affected.

4 Now that the paper driving licence counterpart has been abolished, and the physical driving licence consists of the photocard licence, there is no further need for a driving licence to be produced for an endorsement to be recorded against a driver’s driving record (either to be produced to the court where proceedings are commenced, or to a constable, vehicle examiner or fixed penalty clerk in relation to fixed penalties or conditional offers).

5 Since the abolition of the paper counterpart (in June 2015) no physical documents are endorsed when a person receives penalty points. Instead the courts and fixed penalty offices electronically update the details on the person’s driver record which is held by the DVLA.

6 The only need for a licence to be produced or surrendered is therefore where the driver may be sentenced to disqualification, or is actually disqualified.

7 The proposals are to adjust the RTOA accordingly and to empower the Secretary of State (in practice his executive agency, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) to be able to demand surrender of revoked licences where a driver has been disqualified.

8 Corresponding changes are proposed to the NDA, including to empower the Secretary of State to be able to demand the surrender of revoked licences and driving test pass certificates in the scenarios where a new driver with a full licence is disqualified, or is disqualified before actually receiving their full driving licence (i.e. where they have a provisional licence plus a test pass certificate) or is disqualified where they have a test pass certificate for a class of vehicle for which their full licence operates as a provisional licence.

9 The paper counterpart to the driving licence was abolished by commencement of section 10 and Schedule 3 of the Road Safety Act 2006. These provisions removed references to the driving licence counterpart. They did not however remove the requirement for licences to be surrendered as part of the process of accepting conditional offers or fixed penalty notices or prior to a court hearing.


Prepared 8th May 2018