The DVLA has issued an important warning to drivers who have had a licence for 10 years.
The Government department posted a message on Twitter, reminding motorists that their licence must be renewed every 10 years. Anyone who fails to do this will be breaking the law and may have to pay a fine of up to £1,000.
As well as a fine, if you are caught driving without a valid licence, you may face difficulties with car insurance, you may be breaking local laws when driving abroad and car hire firms may refuse to provide you with a vehicle. Issuing the reminder, the DVLA wrote: "You must renew your driving licence every 10 years.
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"Renew online today - it's easy, quick and secure at: http://gov.uk/renewdrivinglicence Your licence should arrive within a week if you apply online."
There are several ways to renew a licence. Your new licence will be valid from the date your application is approved, not from the expiry date of your current licence.
What you need to renew online
- a valid UK passport
- to be a resident of Great Britain - there’s a different service in Northern Ireland
- to pay £14 by MasterCard, Visa, Electron or Delta debit or credit card (there’s no fee if you’re over 70 or have a medical short period licence)
- addresses of where you’ve lived over the last 3 years
- your current driving licence (if you do not have your licence you must say why in your application)
- your National Insurance number (if you know it)
- to not be disqualified from driving
How long it takes
Your driving licence should arrive within a week if you apply online. You must send your old photocard licence to DVLA when you get your new licence. You’ll be told the address to use when you finish the application.
Applying at a Post Office
You’ll get a reminder letter in the post. Take it to a Post Office that deals with DVLA photocard licence renewal. You also need to take:
- your photocard licence if you have it
- the £21.50 fee
If you do not have a reminder letter, you’ll need your photocard licence to apply at the Post Office. You cannot apply at the Post Office if your name has changed. You’ll need to apply by post.
Applying by post
Get a ‘D1 pack’ of forms from a Post Office that deals with DVLA photocard renewal or vehicle tax. You need to include these things with your completed forms:
- a recent passport type photo (do not sign the back of the photo)
- your current photocard licence, if you have it
- a cheque or postal order for £17, payable to DVLA (no fee is needed if you have a medical short period licence or you’re aged 70 or over)
You also need to include identity documents if you’ve changed your name. Send the application to: DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1DH
Your driving licence should arrive within three weeks. It might take longer if your medical or personal details need to be checked. After you apply at a Post Office or by post, you can continue driving while you wait for your new licence to arrive. More information on how to renew your licence is available here.
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