New Driver Rules
Am I a new driver?
For the first two years after passing your driving test you are classed as a new driver.
Either a full car or motorcycle licence is counted as a relevant test. This means that if you passed a car test 7 years ago and a motorbike test 1 year ago you are not a new driver.
The two years run from when you successfully passed your first test.
What are the Implications for New Drivers?
During your ‘probationary period’ which is the first two years that you are driving, if you accumulate 6 points then the DVLA will revoke your driving licence and in order to get it back you will need to take a complete re-test.
This new driver penalty is not a discretionary matter for the court. Pleading for leniency from the court is pointless.
If you are guilty of the offence, then magistrates have very little discretion about imposing points on your licence. Once you have the points then the decision to revoke happens administratively at the DVLA as soon as they are notified of the points on your licence by the court.
This process is automatic and there is no means of affecting the outcome.
I have been offered a Fixed Penalty for No Insurance – can I take it?
If you accept a fixed penalty of 6 points on your licence and a fine of £200 then revocation of your licence will happen automatically.
The police will inform the DVLA about the points who will then write to you explaining that your licence is revoked.
If you were to continue to drive you would commit additional offences and would risk a 6 month totting up ban.
Having your licence revoked doesn’t remove the points from it, they will remain effective for 3 years from the date of the original offence.
To avoid a revocation of your licence, you have to avoid the points, so will have to take the matter to court.
The downside to going to court is that you risk a potentially larger fine, additional court costs as well as 6 – 8 points rather than the 6 you would get from a fixed penalty.
If you are going to go to court, make sure that you can realistically use a special reasons argument or have really good mitigating circumstances, otherwise the outcome will be worse that the fixed penalty would have been.
New Driver Questions and Answers:
I have got 6 points on my provisional licence, can I sit my test and, if I do, will my licence be revoked?
Yes, you can go ahead and take your driving test because your licence won’t be instantly revoked!
If you accumulate any more points during the first two years after passing your test then you will have your licence revoked at that time.
The offence occurred within my probationary period, but the Court hearing date is after – will I revoke?
If you are given additional points for the offence that happened during your probationary period, and those points brings your total points to 6 or more then yes, unfortunately you will have your licence revoked.
This is because the date of the court case and the date that points are actually added to your licence is not important. The important date is the date of the offence.
If the offence happened during your 2 year probationary period then you licence will be revoked.
I got three points before I passed my test and I am now in my probationary period and I have got another three points – am I going to be revoked?
Yes. If you accumulate 6 or more points on your licence, and the latest offence happened within your 2 year probationary period then you will have your driving licence revoked.
The revocation isn’t carried out by the court, it is done administratively at the DVLA after the court hearing.
Is there any way to avoid revocation?
Yes, but it isn’t easy to do.
- If you can successfully defend the offence allegation they you will not be given any points, and therefore won’t face a revocation.
- If you present a special reasons argument and your magistrates agree not to impose penalty points.
- If the Magistrates agree instead to give you a discretionary ban instead of points. This is only possible if a discretionary ban is an option for your offence according to their sentencing guidelines.
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