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DVLA records of driving offences and how they’re shared

 

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Aim of this information

This information is designed to set out how motoring offences and convictions are recorded by the DVLA and what details are shared with third parties.

We have separate information about how motoring offences and motoring convictions are treated under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.

Why is this important?

Knowing what information an insurance company or an employer is allowed to access and what is likely to be disclosed will ensure that:-

  • You do not provide more information than third parties are entitled to and risk being unfairly discriminated against or
  • You do not fail to disclose something which you are legally required to disclose which may result in the loss of a job, a job offer being revoked or insurance policies becoming invalid.

Introduction

On the 8th June 2015, the DVLA scrapped the paper counterparts for driving licences and issued photo card licences only.

The DVLA advises that:-

  • If you hold a paper counterpart, then it no longer has any legal status and should be destroyed. You only need to keep the photo card driving licence.
  • Paper licences issued before photo cards were introduced in 1998 will remain valid and should not be destroyed.

Any new penalty points (endorsements) issued from the 8th June 2015 will be recorded electronically only. This information will be held on your DVLA driver record and can be viewed online via the DVLA’s Shared Driving Licence Service.

How can I access details of my driving record?

The DVLA’s Shared Driving Licence service will continue to hold information for the same length of time as paper licences did. The length of time a motoring offence stays on your licence is governed by road traffic legislation and will generally be either 4 or 11 years. This is entirely separate to the time it takes for motoring convictions to become spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.

You can use the DVLA Shared Driving Licence Service to:-

  • View your driving record, e.g. which vehicles you can drive
  • Check any penalty points or disqualifications you have
  • Create a licence ‘check code’ to share your driving record with a third party, i.e. a car hire company or employer.

How can third parties access details of my driving record?

Employers

If your employer asks you to provide evidence of your driving record (for example, because you drive as part of your job or you will have access to a company car) then it is possible for you to share your driving record by accessing the DVLA Shared Driving Licence Service.

Once you have accessed the DVLA site, it is possible to generate a ‘check code’ which you can then pass on to the person or organisation that needs to view your driving licence details. The code lasts for up to 21 days and you can have up to 15 active check codes at any one time. Alternatively, there are other ways codes can be generated.

Based on our understanding, it seems like your employer will not be able to see details of any offences or endorsements where the motoring conviction the offence relates to has become spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.

For this reason, it is important that if you have motoring convictions still on your driver record but these are technically spent, that you provide the employer with a ‘code’ to enable them to check your driving record (which should remove the spent convictions) rather than you print a copy of your driving record and give it to them (which will might have the spent convictions on there due to DVLA retention periods).

Car hire companies

You should check with individual car hire companies about what information they require. If you are asked for evidence of what vehicles you can drive or confirmation of any penalty points then you can generate a ‘check code’ from the DVLA Shared Driving Licence Service which you can pass onto the hire company. As above, it seems like this will remove details of any offences or endorsements where the motoring conviction the offence relates to has become spent.   

Generating ‘check codes’

When generating ‘check codes’, you will be given the option to download a summary of your driving licence record which can be printed off and given to employers or car hire companies. We wouldn’t recommend this option as you will be printing your full record and potentially disclosing spent as well as unspent motoring convictions to employers and car hire companies.

Insurance companies

During 2015 many insurance companies rolled out MyLicence (the brand name for the Insurance Industry Access to Driver Data database) which provides details of:-

  • Type of licence held
  • Length of time the licence has been held
  • Entitlements to drive
  • Penalty points
  • Convictions and conviction dates
  • Disqualifications

It is not currently used by all insurers, brokers or price comparison websites but those who do use it will ask you to provide them with your driving licence number and the driving licence number for all named drivers. This information is used to immediately check details with the DVLA driver database.

MyLicence will not share the details of spent convictions, even if they remain on your driving record.

What does this mean for people with motoring convictions?

  • The DVLA Shared Driving Licence service will continue to hold information for the same time as paper licences and in accordance with road traffic legislation. However, convictions which are spent under the ROA should not be disclosed to employers and car hire companies through the ‘check codes’ process.
  • If you’ve got motoring convictions on your record, it’s more likely that you’ll get found out if you don’t disclose them when required to do so, particularly if the conviction is unspent and you’re applying for insurance as many insurance companies and brokers may ask your permission to access your driver records from the MyLicence site.
  • It’s important to remember that you do not need to disclose spent convictions to an insurer, even if they remain on your driving record.

For more information

  1. Practical self-help information – More information on motoring convictions and the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 can be found here.
  2. Discuss the issue – Read and share your experiences on our online forum.

Get involved

  1. Comment on this information (below)
  2. Send your feedback directly to us.
  3. Discuss your views and experiences with others on our online peer forum

Comments

Add Comment
  1. Hi I recently applied for a hgv job and got refused after they took my ni number to do the checks for my license,and it came back as I have DR10, but it’s so confusing and it’s heart breaking as I feel like they are breaching the data protection act,and treating me as and ex convict it’s been nearly 9 years now and when ever I think about the situation I regret every moment, and now I was looking foward for a new career and I can even tell my family neither I can share with my wife and kids it’s so embarrassing…that my conviction is classed as spent under rehabilitation act 1974 but it still comes up in your record and employers don’t check through license using code, they check the systems as it’s yourself and I feel that I have been discriminated as I have a conviction which I really regret every time and this thing is effectively effecting my life and destroying my relationship and it’s mental health torture please advise thanks kind regards m…

  2. I am currently required by the police to provide details of any convictions on my driving licence.I have had in the past 3 convictions for speeding and have had these recorded on my paper licence.I now have a digital licence and have checked on line to see whether such information has been recorded. According to my on line record I have no convictions or penalties so presumably I can say to the police that any convictions are spent.

    1. Hi

      I’m not entirely sure why you are required to provide the police with details of any driving convictions and my advice therefore is quite general.

      Speeding fines which were not issued in a court (for example Fixed Penalty Notices) are not deemed to be convictions and therefore do not fall under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA). They are recorded on your driving licence for a period of 4 years.

      If you were convicted of a motoring offence in court then this would be classed as a conviction. The details would stay on your driving licence for 4 years but would become spent after a period of 5 years.

      Best wishes

      Debbie

  3. I have a question which I hope someone can address as I’ve been online to find the answer without any luck.
    I received a BA10 in June 2018. It was removed from my driving licence June this year. Do I still need to declare this to an insurer? My thought is that it’s spent as it’s no longer on my licence.
    Thank you in advance.

    1. Hi

      Although the BA10 has now been removed from your licence it won’t be spent until June 2023 (endorsements have a 5 year rehabilitation period). When you are applying for insurance you will still need to disclose it.

      Best wishes

      Debbie

    1. Hi Dave

      Individuals can apply for a copy of their own court records by contacting the court they were convicted in. It’s not possible to apply for the court records of somebody else.

      Best wishes

      Debbie

  4. I have 9 points on my current provisional licence.

    3 for speeding
    6 for driving without a licence and insurance in Feb 21

    I have been asked to attend court for again being stopped for driving without a licence while making a less than 1 mile journey to pick up medicine for my sick daughter Jan 23.

    I have passed my theory test and recently failed my driving test however I have this booked again for April.

    Would It be worth my while asking the judge to be lenient so that I may take my test or should I prepare myself for a ban (would this be the best result in that it will clear down my points)

    Will I have to resit both tests after the ban?

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Photo of Head of Advice, Debbie Sadler
Debbie Sadler
Head of Advice

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