Retesting For New Drivers Who Offend

Well Done if you have just passed your Driving Test.
Resist the temptation to go mad. If you tot up six penalty points within two years of passing your practical test, you'll have to take both tests again. Some New Drivers have had their driving licences revoked as a result of their own irresponsible driving behaviour.

More about Driving Penalty Points

Since 1st June 1997, people passing their first driving test are on 'on probation' for two years. A total of six or more penalty points during that time will mean they have to go back to learner status, apply for a new provisional licence and take the test again.


Newly qualified drivers, especially young ones, are more at risk in the first year or so after passing the test, than at any other time in their motoring career and one in five will have an accident in the first year alone. The new law aims to reduce the number of road deaths and injuries by penalising new drivers who increase their risks by committing offences such as speeding.

How you may unintentionally break the law as a motorist

Most people are aware it’s illegal to use a hand-held mobile phone or device while driving, but some may not realise it could extend to using a device for sat nav. Holding or touching your phone while driving, even to use sat nav, will likely constitute an offence. Compare the Market has compiled exclusive data that looks at the state of the rules of the road and how they get broken.


Anyone passing their first driving test, no matter what class of vehicle it covers (usually car or motorcycle) for the first two years after the date of passing. Drivers who already have a full licence on one category and pass a test in another do not have their probationary period extended or revived, because the scheme is aimed at first time drivers.


Penalty points count if the offence was committed during the first two years after passing the driving test, even if the court sentence is not given until this period has expired.
Valid penalty points incurred prior to passing the first test are taken into account if the driver commits a penalty point offence during the probationary period. Points incurred after the probationary period has expired will also count if the offence was committed during the probationary period.


When the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency is notified that a new driver has six or more penalty points they will write to him/her to say that the licence has been revoked. The driver then reverts to learner status and is treated like any other learner. He or she has to apply for a new provisional licence, display L-plates and is prohibited from driving on motorways. A learner car driver will need to be accompanied by a driver aged 21 or over who has held a full licence for at least three years. A learner motorcyclist will be restricted to smaller less powerful bikes.
To ignore a revocation and carry on driving without a valid driving licence is an offence with a maximum penalty of £1,000.


Passing a retest in a car or motorcycle may restore any LGV (lorry) or PCV (bus/coach) category previously held, but only if the traffic commissioner is satisfied that the person is ready to go back to driving these vehicles. The traffic commissioner can require another LGV or PCV test of he sees fit.


When caught committing a driving offence, police forces sometimes offer motorists the option of attending a Driver Awareness Course as an alternative to formal prosecution through the courts.
Not all Police forces offer these courses and some are different to others.


Licences are not revoked a second time if more points are obtained after a successful retest. However, the points already on the licence stay on from the date of the offence for which they were given. Passing the retest does not remove the penalty points from your licence, and if the total reaches 12, you are liable to be disqualified by a court.
Under Section 35 of The Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 a driver who amasses 12 points within a 3 year period faces disqualification for a minimum of 6 months under the “Totting Up” provisions.

ENDORSEMENTS - how long on your licence?

Endorsements must remain on a licence for 11 years from date of conviction if the offence is :-
  • drinking/drugs and driving (shown on the licence as DR10, DR20, DR30 and DR80).
  • causing death by careless driving whilst under the influence of drink/drugs (shown on the licence as CD40, CD50 and CD60).
  • causing death by careless driving, then failing to provide a specimen for analysis (shown on the licence as CD70).
4 years from date of conviction if the offence is as listed below :-
  • reckless/dangerous driving (shown on the licence as DD40, DD60 and DD80),
  • offences resulting in disqualification.
  • disqualified from holding a full licence until a driving test has been passed.
  • 4 years from the date of offence in all other cases.

Penality Table

Offence Maximum penalties


*Causing death by dangerous driving 10 years Unlimited Obligatory-2 years minimum 3-11 (if exceptionally not disqualified)

*Dangerous driving 2 years Unlimited Obligatory 3-11 (if exceptionally not disqualified)

Causing death by careless driving under the influence of drink or drugs 10 years Unlimited Obligatory-2 years minimum 3-11 (if exceptionally not disqualified)

Careless or inconsiderate driving   £2,500 Discretionary 3-9

Driving while unfit through drink or drugs or with excess alcohol; or failing to provide a specimen for analysis 6 months £5,000 Discretionary 5-10

Driving when disqualified 6 months (12 months in Scotland) £5,000 Discretionary 6

Driving after refusal or revocation of licence on medical grounds 6 months £5,000 Discretionary 3-6

Driving without insurance   £5,000 Discretionary 6-8

Driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence   £1,000 Discretionary 3-6

Speeding   £1,000 (2,500 for motorway offences) Discretionary 3-6 or 3 (fixed penalty)

Traffic light offences   £1,000 Discretionary 3

No MOT certificate   £1,000 Discretionary  

Seat belt offences   £500    

Dangerous cycling   £2,500    

Careless cycling   £1,000    

Cycling on pavement   £500    

Failing to identify driver of a vehicle   £1,000 Discretionary 3

* Where a court disqualifies a person on conviction for one of these offences, it must order an extended retest. The courts also have discretion to order a retest for any other offence which carries penalty points: an extended retest where disqualification is obligatory, and an ordinary test where disqualification is not obligatory.

Collingwood Learner Driver Insurance