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Advice for motorists with paper driving licences: how they'll be affected when the counterpart’s abolished

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Do you or any of your customers have old-style paper driving licences? Have you wondered what will happen to these paper licences once the paper counterpart to the photocard is abolished on 8 June 2015.

Around 7 million GB drivers still hold a paper driving licence (that is, any licence issued before 31 March 2000) and some of these customers have asked us how they'll be affected when the counterpart is abolished. So, we thought we’d explain in more depth the impact on drivers who hold these types of licences.

Paper driving licences should not be destroyed and will still  be valid after 8 June.  It’s never been mandatory for drivers to replace their traditional style paper driving licence with the photocard licence, and this will remain unchanged.

However, there are some things paper licence holders will need to know about, including the way their licence information will be viewed in the future.

Do not destroy your paper driving licence

The changes that come into effect on 8 June 2015 are for existing photocard driving licence holders in England, Scotland and Wales only (Northern Ireland drivers are unaffected). Providing none of the details on a driver’s paper licence have changed (like their name or address), they can continue to use it until it expires. This is usually the day before their 70 birthday or 45 birthday for vocational entitlement.

After 8 June, endorsements (penalty points) will no longer be recorded on paper licences

Endorsements will be recorded and held electronically and can be viewed using our View Driving Licence service. If drivers commit an endorseable offence they’ll still have to pay the fine and submit their licence to the court. However, the paper licence will no longer have the offence details written or printed on it, so it will no longer provide an accurate account of any driving endorsements they may have.

Digital services

Regardless of the type of licence drivers hold, they now have access to digital services which provide the latest driving licence information held on DVLA’s records. If someone drives for a living or  plans to rent a vehicle, their paper licence may no longer be accepted. Our Share Driving Licence service will allow drivers to provide the most up-to-date information about their driving record to whoever needs to view it, for example, an employer or a rental company.

Not everyone can or will want to use the internet

We understand that not everyone is able to use digital services, so there are also a range of existing channels available which allow driving licence checks to be carried out, such as by phone or post. Businesses and organisations can continue to use these channels as well as the online services.

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