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DVLA

UncleZen

Registered User
Dec 24, 2019
30
0
My wife's driving licence is an annual renewal because of medical reasons, she has early onset Alzhiemers. Her licence expired in early October. I sent DVLA all the paperwork in early august. On Nov 10 I managed to speak to an operator at DVLA and they confirmed the had received the paperwork, and a case worker will be assigned in due course. It'll be 5 months soon since they've had the paperwork, and 3 months since the licence expired. They put the delay down to the pandemic and that people have to be in the office to process it. As of mid-november the GP had not recieved any request from DVLA. What a shambles they are (DVLA that is). I did approach the GP about section 88, but they said they are not in a position to asses driving standards (which, in all honestly, sounds fair enough to me). Anyone else in this 'boat' ?
 

gibbop

New member
Dec 28, 2021
1
0
yes my father in same position, he was going to drive under section 88, but I said the ANPR cameras on the road will pick up he has no licence and if police pick him off of the street and it says no licence, which it does online, he may get fined, lose his licence and even lose his car. inky a gov body can get away with this sort of delay, it is a shambles and they should be fined for it. if it was a private firm they would get fined and the contract removed from them. disgusting
 

RosettaT

Registered User
Sep 9, 2018
786
0
Mid Lincs
Sorry but using covid is an excuse,

My OH had his license withdrawn and he contested it, finally he went for an assessment (it's not a test). All in all it took 8 months from receiving the letter withdrawing his licence, (which arrived 2 days after the date said he should stop driving), to getting the letter to say he was fit to drive.

This was in 2018, well before covid reared it's ugly head.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
Last year I found out that the DVLA have no process or ability to prevent a person whose driving licence has been revoked on medical grounds, from registering as the keeper of a new car. So a person with dementia who is in denial, as is not unusual, can pop down to the nearest car dealer and buy a car with no checks. It might be that the car was for static display, for use on private land, etc but that would be very rare.
 

MalcW

Registered User
Jul 3, 2020
25
0
We informed DVLA of my wife's diagnosis. 2 weeks later they wrote to suspend her licence pending investigation. 1 week after that they sent her a new licence. I sent that back stating that, as a professional driver i considered her unfit. They argued that the medical evidence did not support this and sent it back to us. 2 days later she went the wrong way round the busiest roundabout in the county and drove up the wrong side of the A16. Luckily she was stopped before anything happened. So don't try to reason with DVLA. They will only do their own thing anyway. The police officers dealing with this matter agreed that she should never have been given the licence back and we surrendered it to them. 3 weeks later we got it back again!!!!! You couldn't make it up could you.
 

Windy28

Registered User
Jan 8, 2020
114
0
My wife's driving licence is an annual renewal because of medical reasons, she has early onset Alzhiemers. Her licence expired in early October. I sent DVLA all the paperwork in early august. On Nov 10 I managed to speak to an operator at DVLA and they confirmed the had received the paperwork, and a case worker will be assigned in due course. It'll be 5 months soon since they've had the paperwork, and 3 months since the licence expired. They put the delay down to the pandemic and that people have to be in the office to process it. As of mid-november the GP had not recieved any request from DVLA. What a shambles they are (DVLA that is). I did approach the GP about section 88, but they said they are not in a position to asses driving standards (which, in all honestly, sounds fair enough to me). Anyone else in this 'boat' ?
My husband is in the same situation. His licence expired in July 2021. I sent all the paperwork back in May. July and August passed but I couldn't get through to the DVLA on the phone. Rang the doctors who told me they sent the paperwork back to the DVLA on 01 July. They wouldn't tell me what they wrote. We are now in January 2022 and I have had no paperwork or licence back from the DVLA. I am worried sick about the situation.
 

UncleZen

Registered User
Dec 24, 2019
30
0
Update. Today 6m after filling out the forms, I finally get a letter back from DVLA saying they be will be writing to doctors etc. The delay is because of COVID.
My PWD says: I'm not sure why they took my licence off me anyway. Me: because you were diagnosed with Alzheimer's. PWD: I don't remember that. Me: sigh.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
Update. Today 6m after filling out the forms, I finally get a letter back from DVLA saying they be will be writing to doctors etc. The delay is because of COVID.
My PWD says: I'm not sure why they took my licence off me anyway. Me: because you were diagnosed with Alzheimer's. PWD: I don't remember that. Me: sigh.
Yes common I think. My dad said almost exactly the same thing. And it comes up again and again.
 

Raest

Registered User
Jan 15, 2022
13
0
My husband was originally told not to drive due to autoimmune encephalitis, then told he had dementia, now diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at 56. We told DVLA in October and heard nothing. His consultant said from his results he didn’t see why he couldn’t drive and said to book an assessment privately which is what we have done for next week and they notify DVLA. We don’t know if he passes his assessment if he is allowed to drive as we have already informed DVLA and will update insurance company. I hope so as I am dreading contacting DVLA.
 

CMausolle

New member
Feb 19, 2022
2
0
When my Fathers license expired, we ticked all boxes to say that he was medically unfit to drive. This was ignored. I can’t believe how difficult it is to get a driving license theses days and the hoops one needs to jump through , but the DVLA don’t seem to recognise the danger of someone with this condition to be on the road. My Father had several accidents, thankfully nothing fatal. It is so difficult trying to tell someone with Alzheimer’s or Dimentia that they can not drive anymore . My Father was a brilliant driver and it robbed him of him pride freedom and power . Very sad 😞
 

RosettaT

Registered User
Sep 9, 2018
786
0
Mid Lincs
When my Fathers license expired, we ticked all boxes to say that he was medically unfit to drive. This was ignored. I can’t believe how difficult it is to get a driving license theses days and the hoops one needs to jump through , but the DVLA don’t seem to recognise the danger of someone with this condition to be on the road. My Father had several accidents, thankfully nothing fatal. It is so difficult trying to tell someone with Alzheimer’s or Dimentia that they can not drive anymore . My Father was a brilliant driver and it robbed him of him pride freedom and power . Very sad 😞
(My bold)

But it was the opposite for my OH.
His license was withdrawn immediately they got the diagnosis, he fought it by himself, made all the phone calls, filled in all the paperwork etc. He went for a driving assessment, and the assessment centre said he was one of the highest scoring they had ever had through process.
There seems to be no set procedure they follow, I think it depends on the opinion of whoever is dealing with the case.

A little like when OH was in hospital, once they saw his diagnosis they simply assumed he couldn't do things, never assessed his abilities, just assumed he was incapable, that's why he was originally turned down for re-enablement.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
The DVLA will ask the GP for a report. In my dads case it took a fairly long time to get to that point but within days of the GP writing his report his driving license was revoked so I am fairly sure the GP must have said that my dad ought not to be driving.
 

UncleZen

Registered User
Dec 24, 2019
30
0
Update: we were asked to do a fitness to drive assessment at the local GP surgery, which was done early May. Posted the letter to DVLA and today she finally got a new 1 year licence. The whole process took about 7 months.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
3,208
0
High Peak
I don't understand all the different accounts. Why is there no standard procedure? Here we have examples of some GPs saying they can't possibly assess someone for driving and another saying they were assessed at the GP surgery. A GP can certainly test someone's eyesight, which should probably be the first thing to consider, but how can they check the person's ability to judge when to merge with faster traffic, or their reaction time when another driver pulls out in front of them unexpectedly?

I actually think that a diagnosis of dementia should mean an immediate driving ban/withdrawal of license. It really doesn't matter how good a person's driving is because that could change at any moment. Whilst I fully understand the hurt, frustration, loss of independence and inconvenience of losing a license, I'm afraid that's just how it is. It is far more important that people with dementia are not allowed to drive.

The point is this: the day before a person drives the wrong way around a busy roundabout, they drove perfectly well, so a license that says you are safe to drive today does not mean you will be safe tomorrow, let alone for the next year. Dementia means your cognition is compromised, no iffs, no buts. Driving requires you to be fully in control and fully aware of everything that is happening around you. A person with dementia is not. End of story.

This is about safety. It may hurt your loved one's pride to take away their license. But letting them drive may take away their or someone else's life.
 

NickP

Registered User
Feb 23, 2021
30
0
We let the DVLA know when Dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and they wrote to acknowledge it and said they'd look into it. I've only just realised reading this post, that we never heard anything else! But, because of his age, his license came up for renewal last autumn and we simply didn't renew it; then took the old one out of dad's wallet. We have told him the police have said he can't drive anymore because he sometimes forgets things and gets a bit muddled (understatement of the year!)
Dad continues to be obsessed with driving and on a daily basis tells mum he is going to take the car for a drive; previously this would escalate into a 5-8 hour episode of verbal aggression and abuse, pacing and threats. Since changing medication, he is less agitated about things, but does still say he'd like to have a drive (mum often takes him out then and she drives).
On one occasion, he got the key and took the car; obviously the police had to be involved and when they asked me what was my greatest concern for my dad I said, "that he might kill someone." Thankfully he didn't and once home, they came to talk to him - they didn't prosecute him - and gave mum adivce about hiding the key, being clear about no having a license etc. Of course, a couple of hours later, dad had no idea any of it had ever happened.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
I don't understand all the different accounts. Why is there no standard procedure? Here we have examples of some GPs saying they can't possibly assess someone for driving and another saying they were assessed at the GP surgery. A GP can certainly test someone's eyesight, which should probably be the first thing to consider, but how can they check the person's ability to judge when to merge with faster traffic, or their reaction time when another driver pulls out in front of them unexpectedly?

I actually think that a diagnosis of dementia should mean an immediate driving ban/withdrawal of license. It really doesn't matter how good a person's driving is because that could change at any moment. Whilst I fully understand the hurt, frustration, loss of independence and inconvenience of losing a license, I'm afraid that's just how it is. It is far more important that people with dementia are not allowed to drive.

The point is this: the day before a person drives the wrong way around a busy roundabout, they drove perfectly well, so a license that says you are safe to drive today does not mean you will be safe tomorrow, let alone for the next year. Dementia means your cognition is compromised, no iffs, no buts. Driving requires you to be fully in control and fully aware of everything that is happening around you. A person with dementia is not. End of story.

This is about safety. It may hurt your loved one's pride to take away their license. But letting them drive may take away their or someone else's life.
I quite agree that PWD should give up driving before, not when, they lose critical driving skills. I used to be a safety officer in a factory. Would I have been right to let a PWD operate machinery or drive a fork lift truck? Obviously not. A car is a dangerous machine too.

A GP never makes the decision about fitness to drive. That decision is always made by the DVLA medical department. However the evidence that the DVLA looks at includes the GP 's report, which I believe carries quite a lot of weight.
 

fromnz123

Registered User
Aug 2, 2019
121
0
UK
My husband was referred to the memory clinic in august 2020, at appointments with GP, Psychiatrist and Neurologist, I raised the question as to if he should be allowed to drive.

Not one of them was able to say NO, to him driving, even though I was vocal about my concerns. I had informed the DVLA that my husband was being tested for dementia , and they wrote to the GP, a letter was sent on the 15 July 21 from the GP to the DVLA saying that he was fit to drive.

On the 4th august 2021 we saw the neurologist who gave us the diagnosis of BVFTD snd stated that due to the results of his Neuropsychology tests he was NOT to drive!
A medical driving test was arranged, but was later cancelled as once the DVLA saw the results of his tests it was not necessary for him to even attend for the medical driving test.
The whole process is flawed .
 

Kath610

Registered User
Apr 6, 2022
19
0
Maldon, Essex
My wife's driving licence is an annual renewal because of medical reasons, she has early onset Alzhiemers. Her licence expired in early October. I sent DVLA all the paperwork in early august. On Nov 10 I managed to speak to an operator at DVLA and they confirmed the had received the paperwork, and a case worker will be assigned in due course. It'll be 5 months soon since they've had the paperwork, and 3 months since the licence expired. They put the delay down to the pandemic and that people have to be in the office to process it. As of mid-november the GP had not recieved any request from DVLA. What a shambles they are (DVLA that is). I did approach the GP about section 88, but they said they are not in a position to asses driving standards (which, in all honestly, sounds fair enough to me). Anyone else in this 'boat' ?
My husband has Alzheimer’s and at the diagnosis in February the doctor mentioned the Driveability Scheme where people are assessed following a life changing event. This is in East Anglia but there must be something similar in other areas.
It isn’t compulsory but I told my husband that it is. The DVLA have had his licence since last July and said they were contacting our doctor - I don’t think they ever did.
His driving was ok but becoming increasingly erratic - every situation was someone else’s fault. He really didn’t want to do the Driveability test so in the end (after many discussions, going over the same ground) I said I was not going to advise him in any way because I didn’t want to be blamed at a later date. I got him to finish the sentence “I am giving up driving because…..” he managed Safety and Memory.
I acted on it the same day, contacted the DVLA and surrendered his licence. He signed the car over to me and I cancelled his insurance. No going back.
He has queried it all many times since but has very reluctantly had to accept that he will not be driving again. I remind him that it was his own decision and for all the right reasons
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
@Kath610 You are lucky that your husband has accepted this without throwing crockery at you and calling for you to be burned at the stake as an evil witch. It isn't always so easy. My father was beside himself with anger when I sold his car even though he had lost his licence. He still talks about getting another car. In his mind he is still the driver he was 30 years ago.