You may able to drive while the DVLA process your application
We have had a lot of calls to our helpline from people with epilepsy who meet the DVLA standards and may be able to drive, but are waiting for their application to the DVLA to be processed.
When someone has a seizure they must let the DVLA know and stop driving. How long for depends on what type of seizures they are having. Once they meet the DVLA standards to drive, they can apply for their licence. This is usually a three year medical licence which will need to be renewed.
If you surrendered your licence and meet the driving standards
If you surrendered your licence (rather than having it revoked by the DVLA) and you meet the driving standards and your doctor says you are fit to drive, you may be able to drive under Section 88 of the Road Traffic Act while your application to the DVLA is being processed. It is your responsibility to ensure you meet all the criteria for this. However, one of the conditions of being able to drive is that the DVLA must have received your complete and correct application.
Unfortunately, the DVLA are very busy and can’t send acknowledgements by post that they have received applications for group 1 licences. This is preventing some people from driving that may otherwise be able to. You can telephone the DVLA to check they have received your application, but the lines are very busy and we are hearing that some people are unable to get through.
Proving the DVLA has received your application
We have been in touch with the DVLA and they have agreed that the following should be sufficient as proof that the DVLA has received your application.
- If you are re-applying for a group 1 licence, having previously surrendered your licence, send your application (the D1 pack) to the DVLA under a tracking or signed for postal service. Your carrier should then be able confirm that your application has been received.
- If you are applying to renew your medical licence, and your circumstances have not changed, apply online on the DVLA website. Once you have submitted your application, you will get an acknowledgement that your application has been sent. If you include your email address in the application, you will also receive an email acknowledgement.
These should mean that you meet the criteria that your application has been received and, if you meet all the other criteria, you should be able to drive under Section 88 while your application is being processed.
Driving regulations if your licence was revoked or refused
Please note that you can only drive under Section 88 if you voluntarily surrendered your licence (using the Declaration of Surrender for Medical Reasons form), and you must meet all the other criteria. You cannot drive under Section 88 if your licence was revoked or refused by the DVLA and you then returned your licence to them.
If you have any queries or would like to talk things through, please feel free to call our helpline.