Driver Licensing Fees

Public Consultation on proposed changes to driver licensing fees announced.  The Department of the Environment has announced the launch of public consultation on proposed changes to driver licensing fees in Northern Ireland.

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Environment Minister Alex Attwood said: “I fully acknowledge the costs of running a car, given the level of fuel prices, higher insurance and other costs. To recognise this, I am keeping many licences free, increasing some a small amount and others significantly, where there are strong reasons to do so.

“The biggest fee increase is for reissuing licences for people who have been disqualified from driving for such as drink related offences. A severe penalty of the courts should be followed by higher renewal fees. Fee increases here will be 60%.

“There will continue to be free licences for people over 70 and those requiring medically restricted licences.

“The fee increase for example, for a 10 year renewal will only be around £1 a year for each year of the licence. This is a small amount, deliberately set to keep costs down for the average driver.

“I will continue also to subsidise licence fees with direct DOE financial assistance – a direct effort to recognise the high costs of driving a vehicle.”

Under the proposals published by the Department today:

  • the fee for a provisional licence or a non-UK exchange licence would increase from £50 to £62.50;
  • the fee for a renewal or replacement licence would go up from £20 to £30;
  • the fees for licences issued after revocation or disqualification would increase by 60% from £50 and £65 to £80 and £104 respectively and fees for the reissue of a licence to a high risk offender will also increase by 60% to £144.
  • a new fee of £20 would be introduced for vocational (bus and lorry) provisional and renewal licences; and
  • the charge for a certificate of entitlement would rise from £5 to £7.50.

The public consultation will run from 14 May 2012.

Subject to the outcome of the consultation and Assembly approval, the new fees will become effective in October 2012.

At Right To Ride we will bring you further details of the consultation when it is published by DOE!

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Notes to editors:

There are approximately 1.3 million driving licence holders in Northern Ireland, and approximately 33 million in Britain.

DVA issues over 200,000 driving licences annually, approximately 50% of which are currently issued free of charge.

There is no charge for medically restricted licences, licences issued when a driver changes name or address or for licences issued to drivers over 70 years of age.

Under the current fees, driver licensing income for 2012-13 is estimated to be £3.17 million whereas expenditure is estimated to be £5.62 million.

Driving licence fees are contained in Schedule 2 to the Motor Vehicles (Driving Licences) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996 (SR 1996 No. 542).

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