The DVLA have announced that the paper counterpart driving licence is to now be abolished from 8th June 2015.
What do the changes mean for you?
When you update your name or your address, or renew your licence after 8th June 2015, only a new photocard will be issued to you.
Once the changes have come into effect, you should destroy your paper counterpart but you will still need to keep your current photocard. Paper driving licences issued before the photocard was introduced in 1998 will remain valid so you should still keep a hold of this, it is not to be destroyed.
You’ll still be able to use the counterpart driving licence to change your details with the DVLA, although you can also do this online. You will then be issued a photocard only.
How will penalty points be recorded?
From 8th June 2015, penalty points will no longer be recorded on paper licences and the information will be stored electronically. You'll be able to check this online, by phone or by post.
You'll be able to use the free Driving Licence service to see what details are on your licence, including what vehicles you can drive and any penalty points you may have - https://www.gov.uk/view-driving-licence
Insurance companies will also be able to check drivers' licences using MyLicence in a move designed to cut down on fraud. It's hoped the move will stop drivers making false statements when taking out car insurance, particularly regarding motoring convictions which could invalidate a policy. Insurers would however require the licence number and permission from the holder before they could get the data.
What if I'm taking a theory or driving test?
You don’t need to take your paper counterpart with you when you go for your theory or driving test. You must still take your photocard, or your old-style paper licence. If you don’t, your test will be cancelled and you’ll have to pay again.
What about hiring a car?
The DVLA is developing a new digital enquiry service that will allow organisations such as employers and car hire companies to view your driving licence information.
Driving licence information via these services will only be made available to those who have a right to see it, and with the knowledge of the driving licence holder.
If you're hiring abroad, you'll need to generate a code that lasts for 72 hours. This'll show offences, like speeding, when you hand it over to the hire company.
For a step-by-step guide to obtain your driving licence information, please click here