The New Driver Act and what it means for New Drivers

Amidst the excitement of passing a driving test, it’s crucial that new drivers take the time to familiarise them with a vitally important law which applies specifically to them.

The New Driver Act and who it applies to

The new driver Act applies to ‘new drivers’ who are within the first two years of passing their UK driving test.  This includes foreign licence holders who have taken a UK driving test in order to obtain a full UK licence.

If a new driver accumulates 6 points or more on their driving licence, then their licence is automatically revoked by the DVLA. They would then need to retake both parts of their driving test, resulting in considerable expense, and time spent off the road.

How the 6 point threshold could be reached

Motoring offences carry different amounts of penalty points depending on their severity and nature. Some offences have a range of points that can be imposed so that the Magistrates can vary the punishment according to the severity.

The New Driver Rules do not distinguish whether the points are accrued in one go or are as a result of two minor offences. All that matters is the total number of points on the licence before the two year period is up.

For example, a person who commits two minor speeding offences would face licence revocation, as would someone who commits a single offence of driving without insurance.

Examples of single offences which could result in licence revocation under the new driver rules

  • Using a mobile phone whilst driving (fixed penalty of 6 points)
  • Failure to furnish information (fixed penalty of 6 points)
  • Driving without insurance (6 – 8 penalty points)
  • Permitting someone to use a vehicle without insurance (6 – 8 penalty points)
  • Some cases of careless driving (3 – 9 penalty points)
  • Some cases of failing to stop and report an accident (5 – 10 penalty points)
  • Excessive speeding (4 – 6 penalty points)
  • Being drunk in charge (10 penalty points)

Examples of multiple offences which could result in licence revocation under the new driver rules

  • Failure to stop at a red light (3 penalty points)
  • Low level speeding (3 penalty points)
  • Driving with a defective tyre (3 penalty points per tyre)
  • Driving with defective breaks (3 penalty points)
  • Leaving a vehicle in a dangerous position (3 penalty points)

How to avoid licence revocation by the DVLA

Neither the DVLA nor the police have any discretion over the revocation of a driving licence. Therefore a new driver who is facing the 6 point threshold will need to plead the case in Court.  That’s where we can help.

If you accept that you’re guilty then significant mitigation (information and circumstances to reduce the severity of the offence and its consequences) must be identified, prepared and presented to the Court. It is vitally important that a compelling case is created.

We would ask the Magistrates to impose a short term ban instead of the penalty points. This would prevent you from reaching the 6 point threshold in the first place. The short term ban needn’t be longer than 7- 14 days in many cases, and would see you back on the road considerably faster than having to retake the theory and practical elements of a driving test.

When preparing mitigation, we will ask you about the offence(s), your circumstances and what you use your licence for. The standard for avoiding licence revocation is set high, that’s why we leave no stone unturned when preparing your case.

We will advise on any necessary evidence to support the application and will not rest until your case is as strong as it can possibly be.

A specialist motoring law barrister will then present your case to the Court on your behalf. You would need to do nothing more than confirm your name and enter your plea of guilty or not guilty.

Our methods of avoiding licence revocation have proved extremely successful and have seen the licences of countless individuals saved. Individuals who may have otherwise needed to quit their job or their studies as travel without a car would have been impossible.

At Ashworth Motoring Law, we support new drivers and hope that they spend a long and enjoyable lifetime on the roads. We know that mistakes can happen, that’s why we are here to support, advise and represent new drivers who need to avoid licence revocation within the first two years of driving.

If you are a new driver and would like to discuss the ways that we could save your licence, call 0330 33 22 770 any time, day or night, to speak to an expert motoring lawyer who specialises in avoiding driving licence revocation.

Article by Expert motoring lawyer, Alison Ashworth – Managing Director of Ashworth Motoring Law.