In order to use the public roads safely as a driver, you must be in good health and fit to drive, so as to ensure that as a licence holder you are not a risk to other road users. The Secretary of State for Transport acting through the medical advisers at the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Agency (DVLA) has responsibility to ensure that all licence holders are fit to drive, and measures can be put in place for the Medical Revocation of Drivers Licence.
The medical standards are applicable to both Group 1 and Group 2 licence holders. Group 1 licence holders, include those who drive motor cars and motor cycles. Group 2 licence holders refer to large lorries (Category C) and Buses (Category D). The medical standards for Group 2 drivers are much higher than those of Group 1 due to the size and weight of the vehicle, as well as the amount of time spent on the road behind the wheel.
Does a medical revocation apply to me?
A Medical Revocation of Drivers Licence can apply to both Group 1 and Group 2 licence holders, once the medical advisers at the DVLA determine that a licence holder is not fit to drive. The DVLA can investigate a driver’s fitness to drive in a number of ways, which are as follows:
- The licence holder or applicant for a licence informs the DVLA of a condition which could affect their driving i.e. Cardiovascular issues, Diabetes,
- The Police have concerns about the health and well being of a licence holder after a particular accident i.e. unfamiliarity of roads or road signs due to dementia,
- The licence holder has been convicted and sentenced to a drink or drug related offence,
- The licence holders Doctor informs the Driver that they are not fit to drive and subsequently informs the DVLA of their diagnosis i.e. epilepsy, mental disorder, fainting or persistent misuse of drugs or alcohol.
What happens when the DVLA are informed about my fitness to drive?
The DVLA becoming aware of a licence holders fitness to drive will conduct their own investigation through relevant medical information from your Doctor. If the DVLA determine that the licence holder is a risk to other road users through supporting documents, they will revoke your licence on medical grounds. If your Group 1 or Group 2 licence is revoked on medical grounds then unfortunately you will no longer be in a position to drive.
Will I be able to drive my vehicle when the DVLA are conducting their investigations?
Group 1 or Group 2 licence holders will retain their entitlement to drive under Section 88 of the Road Traffic Act 1988. However, if a licence has previously been revoked due to a medical reason then this entitlement is lost and the licence holder will have to cease driving immediately.
What can I do if I receive a medical revocation for my Group 1 or Group 2 licence and I want to challenge the DVLA’s decison?
Once the DVLA has made their decision, they will inform the licence holder accordingly of their findings and reasons for the medical revocation.
In addition to the above and within the same letter the DVLA will provide you with the following information:
“If your General Practitioner or Specialist can provide any additional information about your condition that shows, in their view, that you can meet the required medical standard, please forward this information to the DVLA”
“Although you may have a right to appeal to the Court’s as indicated in the attached notice (medical revocation grounds) you should be aware that taking legal proceedings can be costly and unnecessary. If you have any further medical evidence or information, which may be relevant to your medical condition and therefore, your fitness to drive, please provide this to the DVLA. You may find that we can resolve the issue in this way”
In light of the above there is a two-step process to appeal against the DVLA’s decision, namely written representations to reinstate your licence or an appeal to theMagistrates Court:
If your licence has been revoked on medical grounds, it is crucial that you obtain advice from us immediately on your right to appeal against the DVLA’s decision. We will assess your case for any grounds of appeal, and if there are grounds to appeal, then we would make written representations to the DVLA to reinstate your licence. It is important that you do this as soon as possible after receiving any notice as there is a six month time limit on appealing the decision to the Magistrates’ Court.
Written representations will be provided to the DVLA with supporting documents so as to allow the medical panel at the DVLA to determine our representations. If the DVLA adhere to our requests then you will be in a position to re-apply for your licence and be driving once the application is processed. If the DVLA does not adhere to our requests or suggestions then you can appeal directly to the Magistrates Court.
Appeal Medical Revocation to Magistrates Court:
If the DVLA has maintained their stance and they are unwilling to re-instate your licence then you can appeal to a localMagistrates Court. The appeal must be made to theMagistrates Courtwithin 6 months. TheMagistrates Courtwill list an appeal against a medical revocation and it will be for us to show “on the balance of probabilities” that the licence holder is in good health and fit to drive. It will be essential that supporting documents are obtained to ensure the right outcome is achieved. The supporting documents can range from letters from your Doctor, Employer, Colleagues and even family. If the Magistrates’ determine that the DVLA are incorrect in their decision then they can request the DVLA to re-instate the Group 1 or Group 2 licence.
The Magistrates’ Court rarely deal with these cases, so it is essential to have someone like ourselves to do this on your behalf to ensure that matters can be expedited.
If you find yourself in a situation where the DVLA have removed your entitlement to drive through a medical revocation, then please contact one of our specialists who will be able to advise you accordingly.