Since the introduction of the photocard driving licence in 1998, the UK driving licence has come in two parts.
One is the photocard driving licence and the other is the paper counterpart.
That paper driving licence counterpart is being abolished in June 2015, so a UK driving licence will consist of only the photocard from that date. Where can I check my provisional entitlements, convictions and so on?
Enter your driving licence number, your national insurance number and the postcode of the address your licence is registered to in order to get an up-to-date snapshot of your licence.
Why is the paper part of the licence no longer needed?
Like a lot of government departments, the DVLA has sought to convert a lot of its paperwork to a digital record.
It saves drivers the effort of sending away the counterpart should they need their licence updated.
It also means the £20 fee to replace it when lost is abolished. The existing schedule for renewing your licence every 10 years remains in place.
It is similar to the abolition of the paper tax disc in late 2014. When you log in to the service, there is an option to create a share code to give to a third party so they can check the status of your licence. If you log in to the Driving Record web page, it tells you when your licence is next due for renewal. As with the current rules, convictions will be visible for five years. If you still have a paper driving licence without a photocard from before 1998, you must keep that until such time as you update your licence to a photocard version.
Switching to digital records saves a lot of administration and postage back and forth. No, you can also make enquiries over the phone, on 03. This is good for hiring a car or having a test drive of a new car. I have one of the older, paper-only, driving licences. That is your driving licence and you are legally obliged to produce them when required by the Police.
If you get endorsements, the licence will no longer need sending off for updating. Driver licensing is a devolved responsibility and, at present, the counterpart remains a requirement in Northern Ireland.
The digital record will be the de facto record of driver endorsements. When I hire a car abroad, the booking clerk asks for the counterpart.
When you pass a driving test you are entitled to apply for a driving licence for the category of vehicle which you were tested for.
This document explains how to apply for your driving licence after you have passed a driving test.