Updates and advice to motorists on abolition of the counterpart to the photocard driving licence
Since 8 June 2015, the paper counterpart to the photocard driving licence isn’t valid and is no longer issued by DVLA. The counterpart was introduced to display driving licence details that could not be included on the photocard. These details include some vehicle categories you are entitled to drive and any endorsement/penalty points. View their infographic for information about the driving licence changes.
Please note, this does not affect photocard licences issued by DVA in Northern Ireland.
What this means for you
Customers with existing paper counterparts
If you already hold a paper counterpart, since 8 June 2015 it no longer has any legal status. You should destroy your paper counterpart after this date but you still need to keep your current photocard driving licence.
Customers with paper driving licences
Paper driving licences issued before the photocard was introduced in 1998 will remain valid and should not be destroyed.
Penalty points (endorsements)
Since 8 June 2015 new penalty points (endorsements) are only recorded electronically, and won’t be printed or written on either photocard licences or paper driving licences. From this date, if you commit an offence you’ll still have to pay any applicable fine and submit your licence to the court but the way the court deals with the paperwork has changed.
For photocard licences, the court will retain the paper counterpart and only return the photocard to you.
For paper licences, the court will return it to you but they won’t have written or printed the offence details on it.
This means that since 8 June 2015 neither the photocard driving licence nor the paper licence provides an accurate account of any driving endorsements you may have. Instead, this information is held on DVLA’s driver record, and can be viewed online, by phone or post.
The courts are unable to respond to queries about the destruction of your paper counterpart. Any concerns about this process should be directed to DVLA.
How to view your driving licence details
Their free View Driving Licence service lets you see what details are on your licence, including what vehicles you can drive and any penalty points you may have.
Taking your theory or driving test
Since 8 June 2015, you don’t need to take your paper counterpart with you when you go for your theory or driving test. You must still take your photocard, or your old-style paper licence – your test will be cancelled and you’ll have to pay again if you don’t.
Confirming your driving record to an employer
If you drive for a living and you’re asked to provide evidence of your driving record (entitlements and/or penalty points), you can do this online for free by accessing their Share Driving Licence service. The service should be used by both paper and photocard driving licence holders. You can generate a ‘check code’ to pass to the person or organisation that needs to view your driving licence details.
If you cannot generate a code online then you can call
0300 083 0013 and the DVLA will provide you with a code.
Alternatively you can call the DVLA on 0300 790 6801 and leave permission for your driving record to be checked verbally by a nominated person/organisation.
They have designed a step-by-step guide to help you share your driving licence information.
Check Driving Licence
If your organisation regularly checks the counterpart for entitlements or endorsements, you can use the Check driving Licence service to check the licence using the code provided by the driver. With the driver’s consent you can view the details on a driving licence, e.g. the vehicle categories they’re entitled to drive and any endorsements or penalty points. This service also gives you the option to print or save a copy of the information.
To help companies or employers who use the new service they havecreated a step by step guide.
You can make a check by phone if you don’t have a check code to use with the online service. You’ll need to ask the driver you’re doing the check on to call DVLA on 0300 790 6801 and leave permission for the check.
You can then call DVLA on 0906 139 3837 (calls cost 51p per minute) to check the driver’s details after they’ve given their permission.
Hiring a vehicle: how to prove your driving record after 8 June 2015
Since 8 June 2015, you should check with the hire company what they need to see when you hire a vehicle. If you’re asked for evidence of what vehicles you can drive or confirmation of any penalty points, you can request a unique code from GOV.UK which allows you to share your driving licence details or you can download a summary of your driving licence record. The code lasts for up to 72 hours and will allow the hire companies to make any necessary checks.
If you cannot generate a code online then you can call 0300 083 0013 andDVLA will provide you with a code.
Alternatively, you can call DVLA on 0300 790 6801 and leave permission for your driving record to be checked verbally by a nominated hire company. This also applies if you have a paper licence that was issued before 1998.
Not all vehicle hire companies will ask for this information and we advise that you check with your hire company.
View their infographic on information about hiring a vehicle.
EU lorry and bus drivers registered with DVLA
If you’re a lorry or a bus driver with a licence issued by an EU member state and registered with DVLA, since 8 June you’ll no longer get a counterpart. Instead you’ll get a confirmation of registration document (D91). The D91 form can be used to tell us you’ve moved address by sending it to DVLA, Swansea SA99 1BH.
Why is the counterpart being abolished?
The decision to abolish the counterpart was as a result of the government’s Red Tape Challenge consultation on road transportation. It also aligns to DVLA’s Strategic Plan which includes commitment to simplifying their services.
This information was taken from the government website: www.gov.uk/government/news/driving-licence-changes