What happens when you retake your test after a conviction?

If you commit a certain driving offence or build up 12 or more endorsements – otherwise known as penalty points – on your driving licence across a three-year period, you can be banned from driving for weeks or months at a time.
If your disqualification lasts for 56 days or more, then you’ll have to apply for a new driving licence before getting back behind the wheel. You might also have to resit your driving test or undertake an extended driving test in order to get your licence back. The court hearing your case will tell you what you need to do.
So, what exactly is involved if you need to retake your driving test? And how do you know if you need to sit an extended test? We answer these questions and more in this handy guide.
But first: when your ban has been lifted and you’re ready to get back on the road after passing the necessary tests, we can help by providing you with competitively-priced convicted driver insurance.
The Insurance Factory has more than 20 years of experience helping convicted drivers get back behind the wheel following offences and driving bans. We cover a wide range of motoring and non-motoring convictions, working with a carefully selected panel of specialist insurers to find you the right policy for the right price.


What happens if you need to retake your test

If the court has told you that you need to retake your test in order to drive again, one of the first things you’ll need to do is apply for a new provisional licence. You’ll be able to drive as soon as the ban is over and you’ve passed the necessary tests.
The three-step process is as follows:
  1. You’ll get a reminder from the DVLA 56 days before your driving ban ends. You can use this document to apply for a new provisional licence – if you don’t receive a reminder then you can order an application form online. You need the D1 form for a car.
  2. Next, you need to book and take a theory and practical test. If the court has told you so, you’ll need to book and take an extended practical test – it lasts at least an hour longer than the standard test and costs more to take.
  3. When you’ve passed both tests, you can ask your examiner at the end of the practical test to arrange for your new licence to be sent to you. By law, you can drive as soon as you’ve passed your practical test – but bear in mind you need to insure your car first.
Also bear in mind that if certain details change during your ban – specifically your name and/or address – then you’ll need to write to the DVLA with your old and new information, along with your driving licence number and date of birth. Send this to: DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AB.
A person handing keys to a new driver

What do the tests involve?

The theory and practical tests are the same tests first-time drivers take today. Here’s a recap, in case the process has changed since you last sat your test.


Theory test

The theory test consists of two parts: multiple-choice questions and hazard perception, the latter being a video test assessing your skills of spotting potential dangers on the road. You book and take them as one test and have to pass both in order to pass the overall test.


Practical test

You can only take the practical test once you’ve passed your theory. There are five parts to the practical examination: an eyesight check; ‘show me, tell me’ vehicle safety questions; general driving ability; reversing your car; and independent driving. You’ll drive for approximately 40 minutes, or 70 minutes if you’re taking the extended driving test.


What does the extended test involve?

Drivers convicted of certain dangerous driving offences will need to sit a mandatory extended driving test after their disqualification period. The test follows the same format as a standard practical driving test, though you’ll be driving for around 70 minutes rather than 40 as mentioned (with the total test being around an hour longer) and the emergency stop is required on every test.
A driver taking their driving test being handed the keys to a car

Medical tests for high-risk offenders

If you’ve been caught drink driving and are considered a ‘high-risk offender’, you won’t be able to get your new licence until you have proven that you’re fit to drive. You’ll be deemed a high risk offender if you:
  • Received two drink drive convictions within 10 years.
  • Were caught driving with an alcohol level of at least 87.5 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres (ml) of breath, 200 milligrammes (mg) of alcohol per 100ml of blood, or 267.5mg of alcohol per 100ml of urine.
  • Refused to give a breath, urine or blood sample when asked by the police.
  • Refused to let a blood sample be tested (for instance if it was taken when you were unconscious).
You’ll receive a D27PH document 90 days prior to your ban ending, which you’ll need to fill in and send back to the DVLA to reapply for your licence.
When the DVLA has received this application, it will send you details of a DVLA-approved doctor for you to make an appointment. You’ll need to pay for this assessment, which will involve:
  • Filling out a questionnaire about your medical history and alcohol use.
  • Taking part in a physical examination.
  • A blood test.

All of these rules and processes may be different if you live in Northern Ireland, so be sure to check the nidirect.gov.uk website for the relevant information.


Convicted driver insurance from the Insurance Factory

Remember, when you’re ready to get back on the road following a driving ban, you can find the cover you need with the Insurance Factory. We’ll take a look at your individual case before searching our panel of insurers for the right policy. We don’t judge, and we’ll strive to be as competitive as possible with our pricing.
When you’re ready, get a quote.