Duty of care

Licence Checklist


Licence Inspection

Checklist to complete for each licence inspected

Driver’s name  ……………………………………………….

Date of check  ……………………………………………

Dept / Ref:   ………………………………………………………………………………………




(Refer to Appendix 1 for guidance)

Tick as appropriate  

1. Original licence seen, not a photocopy. (If licence is from outside EU refer to Road Safety Unit)

2. If photocard, must see paper counterpart too, details must match.

3. ‘Basic’ style of print consistent for all of driver’s details.

4. Serial number and DVLA watermark repeated throughout document.

5. Licence signed in ink by holder (paper-only licences).

6. Name and Address details correct.

7. Note Driver number here

 – *  – Issue no:

* 2nd digit is 0 or 1 for man, 5 or 6 for woman.

8. Current full entitlement held for type of vehicle to be driven (ref. App 2) …….
Note FULL entitlements shown on back of (photocard) licence …………………………..

9. Endorsements: note total of penalty points currently in force.

I confirm that I have checked the above named driver’s licence and it is/not* in order.

Manager’s signature …………………………….

Manager’s name…………………………………………….

*delete as appropriate

Appendix 1 – Guidance Notes On Inspecting Licences

Entitlement To Drive – Employer’s Duty To Check

It is a criminal offence for an employer to cause or permit anyone to drive a motor vehicle unless that person holds a licence to drive that vehicle.

Great care must be taken to ensure the licence is current and remains valid for the type of vehicle; it cannot be taken for granted.

The old group/class system was replaced in June 1990 by Categories common to the whole of the European Community. The law changed in 1997 as part of European Union driver licensing harmonization aimed at enhancing driver safety. Since 1 January 1997, drivers passing a car test no longer gain many of the additional entitlements  granted to earlier licence holders.

The Checks To Make

1. Only inspect the original licence, never accept a photocopy. Licences from EU countries should be in the same format as UK.

2. Holders of photocards must produce both the photocard and the paper counterpart. The details on the photocard and paper counterpart must match.

3. The style of print should be the same for all the driver’s details and entitlements. If the licence has been tampered with, the font may be different.

4. Hold the (paper) licence up to the light to check for the “DVLA” Watermark repeated in rows throughout.

5. A paper licence must be signed in ink by the holder. On a photocard licence and its counterpart the holder’s signature and photograph are copied on electronically.

6. The licence must show the holder’s correct name and address. The licence normally remains valid until the day before the holder’s 70th birthday. Photocards must be renewed every 10 years.

7. The second digit of the holder’s unique driver number must be 0 or 1 for a man and 5 or 6 for a woman. The driver number is shown in the following format:

DRIVE 512185 YT 9ME

A = First 5 characters of surname. If the surname is less than 5 characters the figure 9 will be added to the gaps (e.g. MAN99).
B = First and last numbers are the year of birth. Second and third numbers are the month of birth. (Note: in the case of female licence holders ‘5’ is added to the second digit, this means that the second digit will be 5 or 6). The fourth and fifth digits are the day of the month of birth.
C = The first two initials of forenames. If the holder has only one initial then the second character will be a ‘9’.
D = Computer check digits.
The Driver number is followed by an Issue number. It changes each time a licence is issued to the holder. This is to help prevent fraud, such as trying to conceal an endorsement or disqualification. If the issue number has changed since the last check was made, the driver should be asked why it has changed, e.g. a change of address.

8. Make sure the entitlement is correct for the type of vehicle to be driven. For example, Category D1 = Minibuses. Note the FULL entitlements shown on the back of the card licence (refer to Appendix 2 for the table of vehicle licences categories). Changes from 1st January 1997 mean that drivers passing a car test are restricted to vehicles with up to 8 seats and a maximum weight of  3.5 tonnes, until they pass extra driving tests to get entitlement for larger vehicles.

9. Note the number of penalty points on the licence. If the holder has 4 or more penalty points currently in force, or any disqualifications are shown, an enquiry must be made with HCC Insurance Section to obtain clearance.

Endorsements remain on a licence for:

a)    11 years from the date of conviction for drink/drugs offences

b)    4 years from the date of conviction for dangerous driving and offences resulting in disqualification

c)    4 years from the date of offence for all other cases

Types of Licence

Four formats of driving licence issued in this country are valid:

I. Photocards with a paper counterpart. All licences issued since July 1999 by DVLA are in this format. Provisional licence photocards are green. Full licences issued after passing a driving test have a pink photocard. Both have a pink and green paper counterpart. Full entitlements are shown on the back of the pink photocard; provisional entitlements and endorsements appear on the paper counterpart.

II. Pink and green EC model format full paper licences were issued from June 1990 to June 1999. Of these, the early ones had text descriptions of vehicle categories, later ones had small drawings to represent them. Full entitlements appear in the pink section; endorsements and provisional entitlements are in the green section.

III. All-Pink EC model format full paper licences were issued from January 1986 to June 1990. Entitlements are shown as Groups.

IV. All-Green paper licences were issued from the mid-1970’s until January 1986 but continued to be issued to provisional-only holders until photocards were introduced.

Appendix 2 – Main Types Of Vehicle Shown On Driving licences

Description Category   (1990-) Old   group or class (pre-1990) Minimum   age
Moped i.e. motorcycle that   cannot gofaster than 50kph (32mph) with   anengine not over 50cc. 




Light motorcycles up to 125cc   & poweroutput not exceeding 11kW   (14.6bhp). 






Motorcycles up to 25kW (33bhp)   withpower to weight ratio not   exceeding0.16kW/kg (including   combination). 






Any motorcycle with or without   sidecar




Cars and light vans
Motor vehicles- with a Maximum Authorised   Mass(MAM) not exceeding 3500kg- having not more than 8   passengerseats- with a trailer up to 750kg.(Combinations of a car and a   trailer,where the MAM of the combination

does not exceed 3500kg and the

MAM of the trailer does not   exceed

the unladen mass of the towing






Automatic cars
As cars, but with automatic   transmission.

B Automatic



Cars with trailers
Combinations of vehicles   consisting of avehicle in category B and a   trailer, wherethe combination does not come   withincategory B. 





Description Category (1990-) Old group or class (pre-1990) Minimum age
Medium   sized goods vehicles 
Lorries between 3500kg and 7500kg witha trailer up to 750kg.




Medium   Sized vehicles with trailers
Lorries between 3500kg and 7500kg witha trailer over 750kg – total weight notmore than 12000kg (if you passed yourcategory B test prior to 1.1.1997 youwill be restricted to a total weight notmore than 8250kg).






Large   goods vehicles
Lorries over 3500kg with a trailer up to750kg.


HGV2 or 3


Large   goods vehicles with trailers
Lorries over 3500kg with a trailer over750kg.




Vehicles with between 9 and 16passenger seats with a trailer up to750kg.




Motor vehicles with between 9 and 16passenger seats not used for hire orreward. D1 restrictioncode 1 or 101




Minibuses   with trailers
Combination of Category D1 vehiclewith a trailer over 750kg – total weightnot more than 12000kg and the MAM ofthe trailer does not exceed the unladenmass of the towing vehicle.




As above, but not used for hire orreward. D1+Erestrictioncode 1 or 101




Buses   and coaches
Any bus with more than 8 passengerseats with a trailer up to 750kg.




Vehicles with more than 8 passengerseats but no longer than 5.5metres. D not morethan 5.5metres long




Buses   with trailers
Any bus with more than 8 passengerseats with a trailer over 750kg.


PSV 1 or 2


Appendix 3 – Information Codes That Appear On Driving Licences

01 Eyesight correction (i.e. needs to wear glasses or contact lenses for driving)

02 Hearing / communication aid

10 Modified transmission

15 Modified clutch

20 Modified braking systems

25 Modified accelerator systems

30 Combined braking & accelerator systems

35 Modified control layouts

40 Modified steering

42 Modified rear-view mirror(s)

43 Modified driving seats

44 Modifications to motorcycles

45 Motorcycle only with sidecar

70 Exchange of driving licence (from another country)

71 Duplicate of licence

78 Restricted to vehicles with automatic transmission

79 Restricted to vehicles in conformity with the specifications stated in brackets

101 Not for hire or reward

102 Drawbar trailers only

103 Subject to certificate of competence

105 Not more than 5.5m long

106 Restricted to vehicles with automatic transmission

107 Not more than 8250kg

108 Subject to minimum age requirements

110 Limited to invalid carriages

111 Limited to 16 passenger seats

113 Limited to 16 passenger seats except for automatics

114 With any special controls required for safe driving

115 Organ donor

118 Start date is for earliest entitlement

119 Weight limit does not apply

120 Complies with health standard for category D1

121 Restricted to conditions specified in the Secretary of States’s notice

122 Valid on successful completion: Basic Moped Training Course

Endorsement Offence Codes

A list of endorsement offence codes is available on the DVLA web site

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