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Your Driving Licence

This page provides information about obtaining, exchanging and renewing your driving licence.

Your Provisional Licence

To obtain an original provisional licence you must complete a Driving Licence Application form (DL11.2),  This is available from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Offices in Bulwer Avenue or can be downloaded below.

You must appear in person at the Bulwer Avenue Offices in order for your photograph to be taken for your new licence. You must provide proof of identification. Please read the leaflet "ID Checks for Driving Licences" available for download below.

Once your application has been processed, it will be posted to you within approximately seven days.

Holders of provisional motorcycle licences in categories P, A1 or A are not permitted onto the road until they have successfully completed a training course for motorcyclists (CBT) approved by the Environment Department, and been issued with a certificate of completion.

If you hold a provisional licence for categories F, G, B1 or L then you are required to pass your driving test within two years in order to obtain a full licence to continue to drive vehicles within these categories.  Should you not do so you will be required to wait a period of one year before you can take out a subsequent provisional licence in the same categories.

Your First Full Licence

There is no charge for upgrading from a provisional to a full licence.  You will need to submit to the Bulwer Avenue offices:

  • The completed application form
  • Your provisional driving licence
  • Your practical driving test certificate

Medicals

If you have answered 'YES' to any of the medical questions in section six of the application form for a driving licence or a provisional driving licence, you will have to obtain a report from your doctor stating that you are fit to hold that category of driving licence.  A form for this purpose is available from the Department.

If you are the holder of a licence in categories D1, D1E, D, C or CE and have reached the age of 45 years, a medical report will be required to enable you to continue to hold these categories.

Exchanging a Licence Issued Overseas

New residents to the Island, who already have a driving licence issued in another jurisdiction, will need to apply to exchange their foreign licence for a Guernsey licence within one year of arriving.  It is important to note that it is illegal to drive in the Bailiwick on an overseas issued licence after twelve months residency.

The Environment Department is able to exchange full licences issued by many countries, including the United Kingdom, and European Union member states at any time, provided that the application for exchange is for a current licence or for a licence that has expired no more than five years previously.

If you do not exchange your licence within five years from the date of its expiry, or if the Department does not have an exchange agreement with the country in which your licence was issued (a list of reciprocal exchange agreement countries is available for download below), then you will be required to take and pass a driving test (including the theory test) before you can be issued with a full Guernsey licence.  Please note, you cannot legally continue to drive on an overseas issued licence beyond one year from the date of your arrival in the Bailiwick.

You must surrender any overseas issued licence upon application for a full Guernsey licence.  Overseas issued licences are sent back to the issuing authority for cancellation.

Please note that a provisional licence issued by an overseas jurisdiction cannot be used to drive in Guernsey or Alderney and cannot be exchanged for a Guernsey provisional licence. A new application for a Guernsey provisional licence must be made before driving in the Bailiwick.

Licence Renewal Notifications

From 1 June 2011 the Environment Department began to phase out the practice of sending individual reminder letters for the renewal of driving licences.  Advertisements will be placed in the local press carrying the reminder, individual letters have ceased altogether other than for persons who have a medical condition.

It is the responsibility of the holder to renew their licence up to two months before the expiry date printed on the licence.

Please note that it is an offence to drive without a valid licence.

Renewing Your Licence

Driving licences are ordinarily issued to expire in the month preceding the holder's next "decade" birthday, unless the applicant has a medical condition that affects his / her ability to drive.

If you are renewing a full driving licence you may apply up to two months before it is due to expire.  However, if you hold a provisional driving licence for categories F, G, B1 or L, then your licence cannot be renewed in the same category until a year following its expiry.

If you hold a provisional motorcycle licence for categories P, A1 or A, then you may renew your licence, but you must file a properly completed application form no earlier than one month before your licence is due to expire and not later than the day of expiry. Failure to renew you licence in categories P, A1 and A within the specified period will result in that category not being available for use for 12 months from the expiry date. You must then successfully complete a further training course for motorcyclists (CBT) approved by the Environment Department within one month of receiving your renewed licence, if the renewed licence is to remain valid.  Should you fail to take the test within the specified time period, or should you not succeed in passing the test within the specified time period, then your renewed provisional licence will not be valid.  You may drive on the roads with your renewed provisional licence for the month during which you are attempting to pass the CBT.

If, on renewing your licence, the photo on your existing licence is less than three years old, it is not necessary to call into the office.  Provided you have registered your ID, you only need post in your completed application form together with your expiring licence (and any other documentation that may be required, such as a CBT pass certificate) in order to obtain your new licence.  Please see the section, Identity Checks (below) if you have not registered your ID.

Duplicate Licences

If your licence is lost or stolen, you must complete the Driving Licence Application Form available as a download at the bottom of this page and send in the fee for a duplicate to be issued.  Please note, if the missing licence subsequently comes into your possession, you must return it to the Department's Bulwer Avenue offices.

Documentation for an ID check must accompany any application for a duplicate licence, unless the check has already been carried out.

Changing Your Name and Address

Please complete the section for this purpose on the reverse of the paper counterpart to your driving licence and send this in, together with the plastic card part of your licence and proof of name change i.e. marriage certificate, original or original deed poll. If copies, they must be attested (see identification form) or certified, to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Division at Bulwer Avenue. Your amended licence will be posted to you within approximately seven days, free of charge.

Please note; if you are the registered keeper of a vehicle, when advising the Department of any change of details please return any Vehicle Registration Certificate for amendment.

 Documentation for an ID check must accompany any application for a change of address or other details, unless the check has already been carried out.

Further Assistance

Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any queries:

Driver and Vehicle Licensing
Environment Department
PO Box 145, Bulwer Avenue, St Sampson's, GY1 3HY

Tel: +44 (01481) 243400
Fax: +44 (01481) 241177

Identification checks for the Issue of driving licences

Since Monday, 4th April 2011 all holders of a driving licence issued in the Bailiwick of Guernsey have been subject to an identification check.  An identification check is only required on the first issue, or first alteration, of a licence.

In practice, this means that all applicants seeking to:

• take out a new or renew a licence;
• exchange an overseas licence;
• obtain a duplicate licence;
or
• alter personal details on a licence (such as a change of address)

will need to fulfil the requirements for identification checking.

Broadly speaking, there are three methods by which an applicant or licence holder can meet the requirements.   When next the individual needs to renew or alter the details on his / her driving licence, he / she can:

• Visit the Environment Department offices at Bulwer Avenue and, together with a completed Driving Licence Application form (DL11.2) , (which may be downloaded or obtainable from the Department), present his / her passport.  The page bearing the photograph and signature will be scanned and the document returned.  A new licence will be issued and will bear a date that will indicate it has been ID checked.

Or

• Visit the Environment Department offices at Bulwer Avenue and together with a completed Driving Licence Application form (DL11.2)and ID Check Application form (DLID11) , which may be downloaded from the list of application forms or obtainable from the Department, present his / her original birth or adoption certificate, together with two authenticated (the official term is attested) photographs.  The certificate will be scanned and returned to the individual.  If the document that is presented does not bear the holder's current name then original documentation showing a change of name (such as a marriage certificate) must also be presented.

Or

• Complete the Driving Licence Application form (DL11.2) and ID Check Application form (DLID11) , which may be downloaded from the list of application forms or obtainable from the Department, and send in authenticated colour photocopies of either a passport or a birth certificate (plus photographs).

Please note; a passport (or other document) used for identity checking must ordinarily be current and valid.  The Environment Department may accept a passport up to a year out of date provided that the photograph of the holder and the signature can be readily identified.

Persons seeking to renew, replace or exchange a driving licence should be aware that a new style application form was introduced on 7th March 2011 and that all licences were made subject to ID checking from 4th April 2011.

More Details on the Procedure for ID Checks

Background

The driving licence is being used more frequently as a means for identification in the modern world.  It is important that, as its use widens, it can be recognised as a trustworthy document and several steps have been taken in recent years to ensure that licences issued in the Bailiwick of Guernsey meet the highest standard for security and tamper proofing.  New colour schemes, patterning and holograms have all been introduced to support better standards of security; identification checks for applicants are the latest measure in this regard.

How to Tell if a Guernsey Issued Driving Licence has been ID Checked

All ID checked licences will have an additional information box on the reverse side of the plastic part of the licence.

This information box will be numbered 14. and will contain the date on which the licence has been printed.  In the accompanying legend, box 14. will be identified as Date Printed.  After 4th April 2011 all licences that are issued in the Bailiwick of Guernsey will be ID checked and will carry the date in information box 14.

It is possible that a few licences will be ID checked before 4th April 2011.  These will also have the information box number 14. with the print date. It is also possible that some licences with expiry dates on or after 4th April 2011 will be issued without an ID check being requested - this may occur if the application for renewal is filed early.

New Forms for Driving Licence Applications and ID Checks

A new pink coloured Driving Licence Application Form has been produced to accommodate the need for identification checks on applicants.

The redesigned Application Form has many of the characteristics of the previous one but the colour and layout are quite different.  There is a separate pink coloured form for licence holders or applicants to use when undergoing an ID check by post(form DLID11).  As mentioned above, this only need be filed with postal applications - it is not necessary for personal callers to complete the form.

Attested Documents

As explained above, it is possible to complete the ID checking process by sending in authenticated, that is, attested, documents together with the completed form.

It is important that anyone seeking to complete the ID checking process in this way should read the notes on the reverse of the form very carefully.  These give full details on what documents are acceptable and how they can be attested.  It should be noted that the Environment Department carries out regular checks on individuals who have attested documents in order to determine their bona fides and authenticate their qualifications for the role.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following FAQs are also attached to the form for postal application for ID checks.

1. Why are ID checks now required?  I have held a Guernsey driving licence for many years and cannot see what has changed.

There has been increasing pressure on the Island to introduce identification checks for its driving licences in recent years.  This has come about due to the fact that, in some countries, the driving licence has increasingly been used as a form of ID - whether to gain entrance to licensed premises, take an internal flight or even open a bank account.  Guernsey must ensure that the standards it uses for the issue of driving licences are maintained at a level that is broadly compatible with those issued overseas, particularly in view of the need to retain the agreements that the Island has with other jurisdictions for the exchange of licences.

2. Why do I have to send in or present documents to secure my ID check?  I know that, in the UK, you only have to put your passport number on the form and the authorities can make their checks from that.

It is true that the UK has a system for verifying data that is held in the system for  digital passports, but this is not yet a universal system. One of the reasons why Guernsey cannot follow suit is that we do not have access to the information base that holds the data used for cross checking.  This is protected data that can only be accessed by certain authorised bodies and is not open to us.

3. It is all so difficult and complicated, would it really matter if I simply did not complete the ID form?

If you are applying for your first licence, seeking to exchange a licence that has been issued overseas, changing the personal details on your existing licence, or seeking to obtain a replacement licence, then your application will only be acceptable if you go through the ID checking process.  If you do nothing then, sooner or later, your existing licence will expire and, if you wish to renew it, you will have to go through the ID process.

4. I have only recently moved to the Island and have not known anyone for two years.  How can I obtain attested documents?


If you wish, you can visit the DVL offices of the Environment Department with your original passport.  This will be scanned while you wait and your details recorded.  Alternatively, you may file documents that have been properly attested by an individual who is duly qualified but lives in the UK.  It should be borne in mind that this could result in a delay in processing your documents as the bona fides of the person making the attestation will have to be checked.

5. Is the list of persons who can attest documents absolutely specific?  For example, I know a company director of a very high standing in the Island, but there is no category for company directors.

The Environment Department will accept attested documents from persons of high standing who do not hold the positions and professions given in the official list, but it should be recognised that the person making the attestation will have to be checked by the Department and this may delay the issue of your driving licence.  It is also possible, of course, that the Department is not able to accept an attested document from such an individual.  This might be on account of a criminal record, a lack of information or other reasons.  In making a decision in such a case, the Environment Department's judgement is final.

6. Once I have completed the ID checks and obtained a properly checked licence can I use my licence for all occasions that require ID?

It is not for the Environment Department to set the standards by which other organisations might operate.  It cannot be said, therefore, that an ID checked Guernsey driving licence will be acceptable in all instances.  However, it is to be hoped that the introduction of ID checks may broaden the base upon which the Guernsey driving licence may be used.

7. My daughter is fourteen and wishes to take out a provisional driving licence for a motor scooter.  She is still listed as a family member on my passport so do I have to go to the trouble and expense of exchanging this for two separate passports in order to apply for her licence?

No.  Your daughter may apply for her provisional licence by filing her birth certificate (either presenting the original over the counter at the Department's offices or by sending in an attested copy).  Please note that when using a birth certificate for an ID check, it is also necessary to include two attested photographs.

8. I have recently arrived from the UK and wish to exchange my UK licence for a Guernsey one.  As I have gone through the ID checking process there, is it necessary for me to do so again in Guernsey?

Yes.  From 4th April 2011 all driving licences issued or exchanged in the Bailiwick of Guernsey must carry an ID check.

9. I am confused.  Why do I need to file attested photographs with form DLID11 when I put in my birth certificate, yet it is not necessary to do so when I file my passport?

This is because a passport has already been issued on the basis of an attested photograph, so there is no need to go through this process again.  In order to maintain the standard used for obtaining a passport, photographs must accompany a birth certificate if that is your preferred document for ID purposes.

10. You state that checks will be undertaken to ascertain the bona fides of persons attesting documents.  What exactly do you do?

The Environment Department will, randomly and regularly, check the details of persons making attestation statements on documents filed for ID checking.  If the person making the attestation has a local address, his / her details will be cross referenced with the existing driving licence record.  If the Department is satisfied that the individual is genuine, then no further investigation will be carried out.  If the person making the attestation has an address in the UK then the Department will routinely contact the individual's business or professional body and make inquiries for ascertaining that he / she is genuine and has not filed a bogus statement.

The Environment Department may carry out other tests and investigations as it sees fit to determine that an individual is genuine.  If there is doubt, or evidence to deceive, the matter will be handed to the police for further investigation and possible prosecution.

11. Just to be absolutely clear, what are the requirements for filing attested photographs?

If you present your original passport for scanning, or send an attested copy in the post, then you do not need to include any photographs.  If you present your original birth / adoption certificate or send an attested copy in the post, then you must include two attested photographs.

12. I have recently married and changed my name.  I don't have a passport and, therefore, can only obtain my identity check by presenting my birth certificate - but my birth certificate is in my maiden name.  Your form states - "If your birth / adoption certificate bears a name that is different from your present name, you must also enclose proof of change of name".  What must I do to provide proof of my change of name?

You will still need to present your birth certificate and two attested photographs.  You may send attested copies into the Department by post, or you may attend in person and present your original birth certificate - it will be scanned, together with your two attested photographs.  You must also present some evidence of your change of name, such as a certificate of marriage.  You may bring the original document into the Department's offices, where it will be scanned, or you may send in an attested copy by post.

13. Do I have to wait until my licence needs renewing or there is a change in my personal details before applying for a licence that has been ID checked?  Could I not just come in with my passport or file my attested documents with the ID form solely for the purpose of obtaining a checked licence?

No.  It is impractical for the Environment Department to issue a large quantity of licences in a short period of time.  This would result in applicants having to wait much longer than usual for their licences to be processed and returned and would undoubtedly lead to bottlenecks and errors.  In order to regulate the work load within the Department it is necessary to maintain much the same flow of demand for services .


Vehicle Registration & Licensing Department (VRLD)

PO Box 145,  Bulwer Avenue,  St Sampsons,  GY1 3HY,  Channel Islands
Tel: 44 1481 243400 Fax: 44 1481 241177




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