Renewing your licence

Your driving licence expires automatically when you reach 70, and must be renewed every three years after that. You’ll need to fill in a form to declare any health conditions you have and that you are still fit to drive. 

Ways to check your fitness to drive

  • Get a sight test – see Gov.uk for driving eyesight rules
  • Get a hearing test – Action on Hearing Loss have a free test. Speak to your GP if you’re concerned about your hearing
  • If you have any health concerns, see your GP and ask if your driving could be affected
  • Check with a GP or pharmacist that any medication you are prescribed is safe to take while driving.

If you’re unsure whether you should still be driving

  • Talk to friends and family
  • Get your GP’s opinion
  • If you're worried about your abilities, or want to reassure yourself or others that you're safe to drive, you could have a driver assessment. There’s no pass or fail, but you’ll get advice to improve your driving, and they may recommend car adaptations to make driving easier for you. They usually take place in your own car, and last for up to an hour.

It might be that changing your driving habits, such as no longer driving at night when your vision is poorer, could help to keep you on the road safely for longer. But it always helps to have a second opinion – other people can spot problems or solutions that you may not have thought about.

Reporting health conditions

There are some health conditions that you must report to the DVLA, such as dementia or Parkinson’s disease  – their website has a list of all the conditions you're required to report. You will need to surrender your licence if the DVLA decide that you don’t meet the required medical standards for driving, or if your GP says you cannot drive for three months or more. You can reapply for your licence if you meet the medical standards again.

If you're diagnosed with a health condition that DVLA need to know about and you don't tell them, you could be fined up to £1,000.

You should also report any medical conditions that could affect your driving to your insurer. Your insurance may not cover accidents that are caused by a health condition you haven't told them about.

If you stop driving

It can be a difficult decision to stop driving, and you may be worried about how you’ll stay independent without your car. There are many alternative ways to get out and about, which may be cheaper and less stressful than driving - see our page about getting around more easily.

Next steps

Read our guide about driving in later life, Behind the wheel

For information about renewing your driving licence, go to gov.uk/renew-driving-licence-at-70

Visit olderdrivers.org.uk for details of organisations that carry out driver assessments near you.

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