Can I be Insured as a Convicted Learner Driver?

Searching for learner driver insurance with convictions included? When you come to a specialist like the Insurance Factory, it’s easy to find the cover you need.

It’s discouraging to get a driving conviction before you’ve passed your test – but it doesn’t mean your motoring life is over before it’s even got into first gear.

You can still find insurance to cover you so you can get back legally on the road. But be warned: some providers won’t want to cover you, and others will charge high premiums.

At the Insurance Factory, we understand that learners and young drivers can make early mistakes, and we want to give you another chance. We arrange learner driver insurance with convictions included, for both motoring and non-motoring offences.

So let’s take a look at what you need to do if you’ve got penalty points on a provisional licence, you’ve had your driving licence revoked, or you’ve acquired any sort of offence that could affect your car insurance.

We’ll also give you some tips on how to stop this happening again, so you can put this blip behind you and set out for many decades of law-abiding motoring!

What counts as a conviction?

A conviction is any offence you’ve committed in the eyes of the law.
  • Even a minor issue carrying a low penalty counts, such as three points on your licence for jumping a red light.
  • You don’t necessarily have to go to court to get a conviction, e.g. if you accept a fixed penalty notice (FPN) for speeding.
  • If you refuse to accept the FPN, or the offence is a more serious one, you’ll be taken to court. Read our blog on what to do if you get a court summons.
  • A conviction doesn’t automatically mean you’ve got a criminal record – we’ll cover that below.

In fact, it’s quite easy to make a mistake and commit a motoring offence while you’re still a learner driver. See our recent blog for 21 tips for learner drivers to help you avoid some of the most common pitfalls. We’ve put a list of top tips at the end of this article, too.

Do you have to tell insurers about convictions?

The short answer is yes!
  • If you’ve committed an endorsable offence that isn’t yet spent (see below), you need to disclose this to your current or prospective insurance provider, if they ask. And you can pretty much guarantee that they will ask!
  • You can expect to see your insurance premiums go up. For minor offences, this might not be too tricky – but for more serious offences, the rise can be substantial.
  • Some providers won’t cover you at all, especially if your offence is a more serious one.
  • If you’re already insured, then generally you only need to disclose your conviction at renewal. But check the small print, as some insurance providers have different policies.
  • Withholding information about convictions from your insurance provider is illegal under the Road Traffic Act 1988. It is likely to invalidate your insurance, too.

It can be tough to find cover after a conviction, particularly a serious one. At the Insurance Factory, we do the legwork for you, searching our panel of providers to find you learner driver insurance with convictions included.

How long do convictions stay on your record?

As we’ve already said, your premiums are likely to rise. So how long do you have to go on telling providers about your conviction?
  • Most convictions, including speeding offences, stay on your record for four years.
  • For more serious matters, such as drink-driving, it’s 11 years.
  • For some offences, that time starts from the date they were committed.
  • For others, it’s from the date of conviction.

You can look up your particular offence on this official government list of the most common driving penalties.

So for all those years, you’ll need to let insurance providers know about the offence – and you’re likely to be quoted higher premiums as a result. We’ll search our panel of trusted providers for you to find learner driver insurance with convictions included that suits your requirements and your budget.

You may have to tell your employer, college or university about any convictions too. See our recent blog on how to talk to your employer about your driving conviction.
  • Remember: once a conviction is spent, you don’t need to tell your insurance provider about it – even if they ask. You’ve got a clean slate as far as insurance goes.
  • If you committed a non-endorsable offence, e.g. you were given a fine but no penalty points for an offence such as driving onto a boxed junction, then it doesn’t go on your record at all.

Does this mean I have a criminal record?

Not necessarily!
  • Although motoring convictions are offences, minor ones don’t mean you have a criminal record.
  • If you’ve accepted an FPN, you won’t get a criminal record.
  • In general, you’ll only have a criminal record if the offence you committed could potentially land you in jail. Even if the penalty you’re actually given is less than that, the offence is still considered “recordable”. There are some exceptions, so check with a lawyer to confirm.
  • However, all endorsable offences, no matter how small, are recorded on the police national computer. You’ll need to disclose them if asked by insurance providers until they’re considered spent.

So you’re looking at higher insurance premiums, and you might well struggle to get cover at all. Contact us at the Insurance Factory – we’re specialists in arranging learner driver insurance with convictions considered as part of the cover.

What are common convictions for young drivers?


No matter how excited you are to get behind the wheel of a car, it’s really important that you keep yourself and other road users safe.

We’ve put together a list of driving risks for young motorists in our recent blog, and we’ll take a quick look at a few here.

According to the road safety charity Brake, young or novice drivers are more likely to be in a road accident. This is due to either inexperience, or risk-taking behaviour.

Compared with experienced drivers, they are:
  • More likely to be in accidents at high speed.
  • More likely to be in accidents when overtaking.
  • More likely to be in accidents in the dark.
  • Less able to spot hazards in the road.
  • More susceptible to peer pressure. Young drivers who carry friends their own age as passengers are far more likely to be involved in a fatal crash.

Driving under the influence of drink or drugs are also, unfortunately, common offences among younger motorists. Find out more about alcohol tags and other penalties in our recent blog.

Mobile phone usage is another common problem. Remember: you can get six penalty points for using your mobile behind the wheel – enough to see your licence revoked if you’re a new driver.

Plus, if you acquire fewer than six points on your provisional licence, they’ll be carried over to your full licence after you pass your test. It’s not the most promising start to your driving career!

Do driving convictions show on a DBS check?

If you apply for a job, course or volunteer post, you may be asked to undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service check. There are three levels: basic, standard, and enhanced.
  • A basic check shows only criminal convictions that are unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. If you were under 18 when you committed the offence, the rehabilitation period is usually halved.
  • Standard checks are used mainly for jobs in the financial and legal sectors. Spent convictions will show up.
  • Enhanced checks are for posts working with children or vulnerable adults. Spent convictions will also be shown, as will any relevant information from the police.

The good news is that a minor motoring offence such as speeding or driving without an MOT won’t show up on any DBS checks. So you don’t need to worry that by failing to stop at a zebra crossing, you’ve wrecked your future career.

If, however, your conviction was more serious, then it could prove to be a barrier to your chosen career in the future.

You’re likely to have to discuss it with potential course leaders or employers. They will take into account how long ago it was, and any other circumstances.

You can expect them to be less understanding about some crimes than others. One example might be insurance fraud, which would be frowned upon by potential employers in the sector.

Is a speed awareness course a conviction?

You may be offered a speed awareness course as an alternative to points on your licence. Many drivers accept the offer, as a way of keeping their licence clean and their insurance premiums low.

Usually, you won’t have to disclose a speed awareness course – but it’s always best to check each insurance provider’s policy.

The same goes for non-endorsable fixed penalty notices or penalty charge notices, where you’re only given a fine rather than points. These are for minor matters such as parking, driving onto a boxed junction, or failing to wear a seatbelt.

What about driving bans?

Yes, you can be banned from driving before you’ve even passed your test! It’s certainly possible to accrue 12 points on your licence, meaning an automatic disqualification.

That’s pretty unlikely – but plenty of learner drivers do, unfortunately, acquire a few points. Unless these expire first, they’ll then be carried over onto your full driving licence after you’ve passed your test. 

Once you’re a fully-fledged driver, you’ve got a two-year probationary period which is even stricter. This is to protect you and others as you take to the roads on your own for the first time.

In brief:
  • If you acquire six points or more in the two years after you passed your test, your licence will be revoked.
  • You’ll have to apply and pay for a new provisional licence.
  • You’ll have to retake your practical and theory tests.

So if you absent-mindedly check a text on your mobile phone while stopped at traffic lights, you can expect to have your licence revoked!

See the official government web page about penalty points for new drivers for more details, or read more about having your driving licence revoked in our blog.

Getting back on the road again after a driving ban can be quite an ordeal, so check out our recent article for top tips.

One of the biggest problems you’ll face is that some insurance providers won’t want to cover you, while others will charge high premiums. The Insurance Factory can search for learner driver insurance with convictions included to find you the best price for your particular circumstances.

What about other criminal convictions?

It’s not just motoring offences that can affect your insurance premiums. You may be asked about any other convictions, too.

You might wonder why a conviction for shoplifting would affect your driving career. But it’s all about assessing risk.

Insurance providers believe that if you commit criminal activities of any type, you are a person who takes risks.  That could mean that you’re a more dangerous driver, who’s more likely to be involved in an accident.

And that increases the chance that they’ll have to pay out on a claim you make.

As insurance specialists, we’ve got more than 20 years of experience in helping people with criminal convictions of all sorts get cover. We’ll search our panel of providers to see who can offer you learner driver insurance with convictions included.

What about named drivers?

If you name a driver on your insurance policy, the provider will ask about their convictions, too. So adding a driver to your policy who has a conviction could well raise the cost of your insurance – even if you don’t have any convictions yourself.

If you’re the one with a conviction, you might be tempted to take out a policy in a family member’s name to get a cheaper deal, with yourself as a named driver.

But if you are actually the one who uses the vehicle most of the time, this is known as “fronting”. It’s illegal, and is classified as a type of insurance fraud.

By asking your parents to take out a policy on your behalf in this way, you’re putting them at risk of a conviction. Plus, your insurance will be invalidated, so you’re not covered if you’re involved in an accident.

It’s really not worth the risk. Instead, contact us at the Insurance Factory, and we’ll arrange learner driver insurance with convictions considered, so you can take out cover legally in your own name.

How can I drive down the cost of learner driver insurance with convictions?

Since fronting’s not an option, what can you legally do to keep your insurance premiums within budget after a conviction?

One possible solution is black box, or telematics insurance. It’s a great way of proving that, despite your motoring history, you’re no longer a risk.

Telematics insurance involves placing a device in your vehicle to monitor your driving. It collects data on many aspects, including:
  • How fast you take corners.
  • How sharply you brake.
  • How often you drive at night.
  • How fast you drive.
  • How quickly you accelerate.
  • What type of roads you drive on.
  • How long your journeys are.

Many policies will come with an accompanying app that shows you how well you’re doing, and where you’ve got room for improvement. Then you can make the necessary changes to your driving style to ensure your premiums stay low.

Of course, even better than a black box is a great driving instructor! If you acquired a conviction because you thought you could learn to drive without a properly qualified teacher, think again.

How else can I lower my car insurance premiums?

If you’re searching for learner driver insurance with convictions, you’ll have to accept that prices may well be higher.

But there are steps you can take to keep your premiums within your budget.
  1. Limit your annual mileage. This drives down the cost of insurance, as there is less risk of you having an accident.
  2. Choose your car wisely. A powerful, fast car will cost more to insure than a little runaround.
  3. Don’t modify your vehicle. Modifications tend to push up your premiums.
  4. Invest in good security. The harder it is to steal, the more willing insurers are to offer you lower cost premiums.
  5. Invest in good safety tech. Blind spot sensors, for example, will help you avoid knocks.
  6. Park your vehicle in a garage, if this is an option for you. It reduces the risk of theft and keeps the cost of premiums down.
  7. Increase your voluntary excess. All insurance premiums have an excess: the amount you must pay towards any claim.

How can I avoid convictions as a learner driver?

Here are just a few of the pitfalls for young or novice motorists that could land you in trouble with the law.
  • If you own a car, keep it in good condition: check tyres, brakes and wipers regularly. Driving a vehicle that’s considered unroadworthy can land you with a motoring conviction.
  • Remember to tax, MOT and insure your vehicle. Otherwise, keep it in a garage or on a driveway, and declare it off-road by making a SORN declaration.
  • If you’re driving a car that isn’t your own, make sure the seat and mirrors are properly adjusted to suit you. That gives you the very best visibility – essential for avoiding an accident.
  • Listen to your driving instructor! If you’re paying attention to a properly qualified instructor, you’re pretty much guaranteed to begin your driving career with a clean licence.
  • Don’t listen to your mates! If you’re asking someone to supervise you while you practise driving, make sure they’re someone you can trust.
  • Don’t be tempted to drive solo until you’ve passed your test. No matter how tempting your shiny new car looks, you must avoid a conviction for driving without a valid licence and insurance.
  • Put your mobile phone away. If you’re using it as a sat nav, switch off all notifications.
  • Consider buying a car with the latest tech. Intelligent Speed Assist is a great way to help you stick to the speed limit at all times.
  • Plan your journeys, and take regular breaks. Many motoring mistakes happen when you get tired.
  • Don’t be in a rush to pass your test. Driving is a lifelong skill, so it’s important to start from a solid base.

Get a quote from the Insurance Factory


We know how easy it is for learner drivers to slip up and get slapped with a penalty.

We don’t think that should mean your driving days are over before they’ve begun. Nor do we think you should have to wait four or even 11 years until your conviction is spent before you can get safely back on the roads once more.

So we’ve got together a panel of trusted insurance providers, and we arrange learner driver insurance with convictions included through them. We can find policies tailored to suit your needs and budget, saving you hassle and time.

We can consider a wide range of convictions, ranging from speed to insurance to drink-driving offences. Non-motoring convictions can be considered, too.

We promise that we’ll always treat you as an individual, and won’t judge you on your driving conviction. With over 20 years’ experience, we’re here to help, so contact us for a quote today.