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What Happens if My Driving Licence Has Expired?

By: Sally Aquire - Updated: 13 Jul 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Driving Licence Expired Driving Licence

Q.

Could you please tell me what to do if my driving licence has expired? Also what happens if it has been expired for more than a year?

(Mrs S Pitts, 8 September 2008)

A.

It is important to know when your driving licence expiry date is (or was), as it is illegal to drive without a valid licence. Although the DVLA may send renewal reminders prior to the expiry date, it is your responsibility to make sure that your licence is up-to-date, including getting renewal forms if necessary. Driving without a valid driving licence can result in a fine of up to £1,000, and between three and six penalty points on your licence. Your car can also be seized. Vehicles of persistent offenders can be crushed/disposed of by the police.

Renewing a Driving Licence

Renewing A Driving Licence is free, unless you have been disqualified. The fees for renewing your driving licence are shown below. You can renew your driving licence at 70 plus online at the DVLA website, or using the D46P application form. For medical renewals, you need to get the D42 or D48 application forms.

Fees for renewal:

  • Renewing a licence at aged 70 (or over): Free
  • Renewing a licence for medical reasons: Free
  • Renewal after disqualification: £65
  • Renewal after disqualification for some drink driving offences: £90
  • Renewal after revocation (under the New Drivers Act): £50
  • To renew the photo on your licence: £20

Renewing a Photo Driving Licence

If your Photo Driving Licence has expired, you can be fined up to £1,000. Your photo licence must be renewed every 10 years; if you fail to renew it at that point, your driving licence will be invalid. You can choose to update your photo sooner than this if your appearance changes significantly. This can be done online via direct.gov.uk or by filling in the DVLA's D1 application form, which you can get online, from the DVLA form ordering service or from certain Post Office branches.

To renew your photo licence online at www.direct.gov.uk you will need your passport number, driving licence (if you don't have your licence you must say why as part of the application) and a form of payment such as a debit or credit card, the cost is £20. The reason you need your passport number - which has to have been issued within the last five years - is because the DVLA will use the picture and countersignature from your passport for your driving licence. Once you've filled in all your details and paid for it then the DVLA will send your new licence out to you in the post. Couldn't be easier!

How do I know if my photo licence has expired?

To check the status of your photo driving licence, the front of the card shows the expiry date of the photo license (marked 4b). The DVLA will send a renewal application pack before the photo needs to be renewed. Renewing the photo licence is usually £20. Your new licence should be sent back to you within three weeks, although it may take longer than this if medical and personal details need to be verified. As long as you have previously held a UK driving licence and are not likely to have your renewal rejected for medical reasons, it should be fine for you to drive while you await your new licence.

It may seem confusing to people looking to renew their photo licence, as on the DVLA's D1 form it does not mention renewing the licence. What you are really doing is renewing the photo on the licence as this is what expires.

Renewing a driving licence that has been expired for some time

If more than two years has passed since your driving licence expired, you may be made to retake your driving test in order to get a new licence. This is especially the case if your licence has expired due to age (driving licences need to be renewed when you reach seventy years of age) or for medical reasons. For these, you may also have to pass a medical. In other cases, you can simply apply for a new licence without problem, although the DVLA will often want to know why your licence has been expired for so long.

Renewing Your Licence

It's compulsory to renew your licence every 10 years - and if you don't you could face prosecution!! Check out Renewing Your Photo Driving Licence Every 10 Years to keep yourself up to speed on what's required to stay legal.

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[Add a Comment]
I renewed my licence at 70, this year I shall be 74 how can I get information as to how to renew for the nextthree years thanks.
Angh44 - 13-Jul-18 @ 8:10 PM
My driving licence expires on 28.01.2019 Will I receive a reminder from the DVLA and how much notice will I get? If I don't hear from DVLA, how soon should I begin renewal proceedings?
Chris - 10-Jul-18 @ 8:18 PM
Hi, I moved to Indonesia over a decade ago and i am returning to the uk in August for a holiday. Myphoto Driving license expired in 2013.. I just tried to apply online using my parents address which is still my address in the UK but seams not to be working..Can i use my Indonesian Driving license in the UK whilst i apply for a new Photo licence..Many thanks in advance David
hinduDave - 9-Jul-18 @ 7:22 AM
Rebecca - Your Question:
Hi I haven’t driven since 2010 when I got married. My license expired 2013. Haven’t realised as I’ve not driven. Worried as I’ve read up about fines etc as I’ve not changed the name on my card license as I’ve not needed it to drive

Our Response:
Assuming you mean the photo has expired, just go ahead and renew it via the usual procedures.
YourDrivingLicence - 5-Jul-18 @ 2:45 PM
Stevieblue - Your Question:
I have a provisional licence and it has expired about 3 months ago. As I have changed my address and I commute to work I never use the licence.I now want to go for my test can I still renew after it has expired?

Our Response:
A provisional licence doesn't expire until you're 70. If the photo has expired, you should be able to renew online, by post or at a post office.
YourDrivingLicence - 5-Jul-18 @ 12:33 PM
My driving licence expired 3 and a half years ago, as I have not driven and havent noticed. Can I renew? Or will they ask for some additional tests? Thanks
Mmaria - 4-Jul-18 @ 10:56 PM
Sueboo - Your Question:
Hello my provisional driving licence has expired and I want to start driving lessons again, I do not have a valid passport, can I renew my licence or do I have to apply for a new licence, Thank you

Our Response:
Your provisional licence doesn't expire until you're 70. Your photo licence can be renewed at a post office or by post if you don't have a valid passport.
YourDrivingLicence - 4-Jul-18 @ 3:30 PM
Hellomy provisional driving licence has expired and I want to start driving lessons again, I do not have a valid passport, can I renew my licence or do I have to apply for a new licence, Thank you
Sueboo - 3-Jul-18 @ 11:11 PM
Hi I haven’t driven since 2010 when I got married. My license expired 2013. Haven’t realised as I’ve not driven. Worried as I’ve read up about fines etc as I’ve not changed the name on my card license as I’ve not needed it to drive
Rebecca - 2-Jul-18 @ 3:46 PM
I have a provisional licence and it has expired about 3 months ago. As I have changed my address and I commute to work I never use the licence. I now want to go for my test can I still renew after it has expired?
Stevieblue - 2-Jul-18 @ 8:49 AM
My driving licences are expired in January. How i can renew the driving licenses now??
Pukis - 29-Jun-18 @ 4:16 PM
Lou - Your Question:
Hi my license is due to expire on the 1st July, however I had to send it off to DVLA as its only valid for 3 yrs for medical reasons the have to review as I have MSI have not had it back yet as they need to write to my Neurologist. Can I still drive my car as I need it for work till I get I back?

Our Response:
Government advice is as follows:
Section 88 of The Road Traffic Act 1988 may allow you to continue driving when you have applied to the DVLA to renew your licence, but the licence expires (runs out) while the application is being processed.
Your doctor must have told you that you are fit to drive. If your doctor is unsure about how a medical condition affects driving, they should refer to ‘Assessing fitness to drive – a guide for medical professionals’ at www.gov.uk/dvla/fitnesstodrive.
As soon as the DVLA receives your correct and complete application for a new licence and as long as you meet all the Section 88 criteria you may drive. It is important that your medical condition, as it is today, would not bar you from driving. If you are unsure, you should check with your doctor before you make a decision to drive.
YourDrivingLicence - 27-Jun-18 @ 11:08 AM
Hi my license is due to expire on the 1st July, however I had to send it off to DVLA as its only valid for 3 yrs for medical reasons the have to review as I have MS I have not had it back yet as they need to write to my Neurologist. Can I still drive my car as I need it for work till I get I back?
Lou - 26-Jun-18 @ 12:12 PM
Hi, I wonder if anyone can help. My LT driving license has been expired for 2 years now and I like in the UK, can I still change it to the UK one and get a new driving license card it will I have to apply for a completely new one?
Sabaj - 23-Jun-18 @ 10:47 AM
Hi, I've got a European Union drivers license and it will run out soon. I want to change it for a uk one, they need my passport. However I can't do that since I'm going on holiday in a couple of weeks. What do I do?
Waffles - 19-Jun-18 @ 7:58 PM
Annie - Your Question:
Hi I'm really worried, I moved 5 years ago and forgot about changing my address on my liecence only yesterday my new car insurerers wanted a copy of my liecence did I find out it ran out a year ago. I have been reading up about the penalty and fine I might get. Can I still 're new my liecence on line or will I have to call DVLA and talk to them first about my situation. I'm 59 female. Thank you

Our Response:
Try renewing online. If you can't, you should be able to do it by post or at a post office.
YourDrivingLicence - 18-Jun-18 @ 11:12 AM
TB - Your Question:
Hi, I moved to Asia over a decade ago and haven't needed to drive, I lost my licence some time ago. I am in Europe this summer and would like to hire a car. Can I renew my licence or will I have to re-take my test?

Our Response:
You can only renew your licence if you have a permanent UK address. Do you have a valid licence for the country you're living in at the moment?
YourDrivingLicence - 18-Jun-18 @ 9:15 AM
Hi, I moved to Asia over a decade ago and haven't needed to drive, I lost my licence some time ago. I am in Europe this summer and would like to hire a car. Can I renew my licence or will I have to re-take my test?
TB - 17-Jun-18 @ 1:09 PM
Hi I'm really worried, I moved 5 years ago and forgot about changing my address on my liecence only yesterday my new car insurerers wanted a copy of my liecence did I find out it ran out a year ago. I have been reading up about the penalty and fine I might get. Can I still 're new my liecence on line or will I have to call DVLA and talk to them first about my situation. I'm 59 female. Thank you
Annie - 16-Jun-18 @ 7:14 AM
Jabeeh - Your Question:
My father-in law has been told he should not drive any more for medical reasons (he has not driven for several years) and he is now surrendering his licence but it expired three years ago. Does he need to still surrender it to the DVLA?

Our Response:
Yes he should inform the DVLA, so that it is on record if he ever applies for a renewal.
YourDrivingLicence - 11-Jun-18 @ 3:13 PM
janinewastell - Your Question:
Hi, worried sick. been driving for 8 years. I did not know my card had expired. Unfirtunately made a mistske in motorway n got pulled by police. I showed my passport n he said you will either get cautioned of fine n points. what happens now and is my license expirrd? can I not drive until my new license comes or will I need to take test again? worried sick, please advice , Anyone

Our Response:
What was the offence? If it was just your photocard licence you will be fined but it's not the same as if your full licence had expired. Just re-apply fornew photocard licence. We can't say what penalty you can expect as we don't know what your offence was.
YourDrivingLicence - 11-Jun-18 @ 10:19 AM
My father-in law has been told he should not drive any more for medical reasons (he has not driven for several years)and he is now surrendering his licence but it expired three years ago.Does he need to still surrender it to the DVLA?
Jabeeh - 8-Jun-18 @ 4:38 PM
hi, worried sick. been driving for 8 years . i did not know my card had expired. Unfirtunately made a mistske in motorway n got pulled by police. i showed my passport n he said you will either get cautioned of fine n points. what happens now and is my license expirrd? can i not drive until my new license comes or will ineed to take test again? worried sick, please advice , Anyone
janinewastell - 8-Jun-18 @ 1:11 AM
Jackie - Your Question:
Trying to renew my provisional driving license but can’t because I can’t get past the fact that I don’t have a current passport (and don’t expect to get a new one) please help.

Our Response:
You can apply via the post or post office see the information here
YourDrivingLicence - 6-Jun-18 @ 3:17 PM
Trying to renew my provisional driving license but can’t because I can’t get past the fact that I don’t have a current passport (and don’t expect to get a new one) please help.
Jackie - 2-Jun-18 @ 10:03 AM
Bumped into a car opposite my drive took car in to be repaired today organised by insurance and repair garage told me my car license has expired just over a year ago worried what do I do worried please can you give me advice I generally didn’t realise I hadn’t renewed it
Shaz - 1-Jun-18 @ 1:24 PM
Omg worried didn’t realised until I damaged a car and checked my insurance took car in to be repaired and they told me it was out of datemy drivers license had expired a year and 1 month ago
Shaz - 1-Jun-18 @ 1:12 PM
I recently discovered that my licence expired 4 weeks ago .. I am diabetic and have to have it renewed every 3 years.I have applied today for a renewed licence.It stated that due to my medical issues I will still be able to drive.Can I still drive my car while the application is being processed and waiting for my new licence to arrive?
Dill - 30-May-18 @ 4:21 PM
Many thanks for your response about still being able to drive even though my photo license card expired earlier this month I've applied for a new one. I wasn't sure because on the confirmation email it had this statement 'the entitlement on your license has not expired'. So this statement doesn't apply to me?
Ann - 30-May-18 @ 3:49 PM
Ann - Your Question:
Hi. My photo card expired earlier this month. I've reapplied for my driving licence online now and have a reference number. Am I still able to drive or do I need to wait for my new licence. Thank you.

Our Response:
Yes you can still drive if you have applied for a new photocard licence but your full licence is still valid.
YourDrivingLicence - 30-May-18 @ 12:16 PM
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