Over 70s Driving Licence Shake Up | Rules, Restrictions, Renewal Application Process, and FAQs

Applying for and obtaining a UK Driving Licence continues beyond these steps.

You will need to renew your driving licence every ten years, or you can be fined up to £1,000 if the licence is expired while driving.

However, your driving licence officially expires once you reach 70 years old.

Not to worry! That does not mean that you cannot drive anymore.

Once you reach 70 years old, all you need to do is to renew your driving licence every three years after.

Thus, having a driving licence over 70 years old is still possible.

In fact, there are 818,835 licence holders aged 70 to 79, 137,356 licence holders aged 80 to 89, 10,046 licence holders aged 90 to 99, and 71 licence holders aged 100 and above.

However, keep in mind that there are over 70 driving licence restrictions.

This article covers everything you need to know about having a driving licence upon reaching 70.

Moreover, it also teaches the steps on how to renew and commonly asked questions.

In summary, the article topics are:

  • What Are Over 70 Driving Licence Restrictions
  • What Happens If a Medical Condition Affects Your Driving
  • Who Can Renew Driving Licence Online for 70 and Over
  • How to Renew Driving Licence for 70 and Over
  • Additional Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Over 70 Driving Licence Restrictions

happy cheerful elderly senior woman driving her car and showing her drivers license

You can get a driving licence when you are 70 years old and above, but some restrictions can still hinder you from driving a vehicle.

You need to make sure you are fit enough to drive. Thus, you should not have any physical or medical condition that may affect your driving.

It is part of your legal responsibility to inform the DVLA of any health condition that affects your driving.

Having a medical condition does not mean you are not allowed to drive anymore, but the DVLA only needs to ensure that you can drive safely with your doctor’s approval.

The following medical conditions recognised by the DVLA that can affect your safety while driving are:

If you have a medical condition not mentioned above that potentially hinders you from driving safely, you still need to report it to the DVLA.

Not reporting your medical condition can penalise you with up to a £1,000 fine.

Moreover, you can be charged penalties and offences if an accident happens because of your medical condition.

Here is a complete list of medical conditions that you may need to report to the DVLA.

List of Medical Conditions (A – Z)

Medical Conditions (A – K)
Absence seizures Ataxia Convulsions Corneal ulcer Eating disorders Heart palpitations
Acoustic neuroma Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) Corneal abrasion Coronary artery bypass or disease Ectropion (outward eyelid) Heart valve disease or replacement valve
Addison’s disease Autistic spectrum condition Catheter ablation Coronary angioplasty Empyema (brain) Hemianopia
Agoraphobia Balloon angioplasty (leg) Cardiac problems Corrective laser treatment Entropion (inward eyelid) Herpes simplex keratitis
AIDS Behçet’s disease Carotid artery stenosis Cosmetic eye surgery Epilepsy Herpes zoster ophthalmicus
Alcohol problems Best’s disease Cataplexy Cranial arteritis Episcleritis High blood pressure
Alzheimer’s disease Bilateral artery occlusion (retinal) Central vein occlusion Cranial nerve palsy (with double vision) Essential tremor HIV
Amaurosis fugax Bipolar disorder Central venous thrombosis Cranial nerve palsy (without double vision) Exophthalmos Hodgkin’s lymphoma
Amputations Blackouts Cerebral palsy Cystic fibrosis Eye tumour Horner’s syndrome
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Blepharitis Chalazion Cystic prolactinoma Fainting Huntington’s disease
Angina Blepharospasm Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease Dacryocystitis Farsightedness Hydrocephalus
Angioma Blood clots Chiari malformation Deafness Fits Hypertension
Angioplasty Blood pressure Choroidal infarction Defibrillator Flashers/floaters (in eye) Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
Ankylosing spondylitis Brachial plexus injury Choroidal neovascular Déjà vu Foreign body (in eye) Hypoglycaemia
Anorexia nervosa Brain abscess, cyst or encephalitis Choroiditis Dementia Fractured skull Hypoxic brain damage
Anxiety Brain aneurysm Chronic aortic dissection Dendritic ulcer (corneal ulcer) Friedreich’s ataxia Hysterectomy
Aortic aneurysm Brain angioma Chronic central serous retinopathy Depression Fuchs’ dystrophy Implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)
Arachnoid cyst Brain haemorrhage Coats’ disease Detached retina Glaucoma Intracerebral haemorrhage
Arrhythmia Brain injury (traumatic) Cogan’s dystrophy Diabetes Global amnesia Iris neovascular (Rubeosis)
Atrial defibrillator Brain tumours Cognitive problems Diabetic retinopathy (no laser treatment) Grand mal seizures Iritis
Arteriovenous malformation Branch retinal vein occlusion Colour blindness Diabetic retinopathy (with laser treatment) Guillain-Barré syndrome Ischaemic heart disease
Artery occlusion Broken limbs Computer vision syndrome Dilated cardiomyopathy Head injury Keratoconus
Arthritis Brugada syndrome Congenital heart disease Diplopia (double vision) Heart attack Kidney dialysis
Asperger syndrome Burr hole surgery Conjunctivitis Dizziness Heart arrhythmia Kidney problems
Asteroid hyalosis Caesarean section Corneal degeneration Drug misuse Heart failure Korsakoff’s syndrome
Astigmatism Cancer Corneal transplant Dry eye Heart murmurs


Medical Conditions (L – Z)
Labyrinthitis Mini-stroke Pacemakers Red eyes Stroke
Lazy eye (without double vision) Monocular vision Palpitations Reis Bucklers corneal dystrophy Stye
Learning difficulties Monocularity myopia (shortsightedness) Paranoia Renal dialysis Subarachnoid haemorrhage
Leber’s optic atrophy Motor neurone disease Paranoid schizophrenia Retinal artery fugax Subconjunctival haemorrhage
Left bundle branch block Multiple sclerosis Paraplegia Retinal artery thrombosis Surgery
Leukaemia Muscular dystrophy Parkinson’s disease Retinal occlusion (artery or vein) Syncope
Lewy body dementia Myasthenia gravis Peripapillary nevus Retinal tear or detachment Tachycardia
Limb disability Myocardial infarction Peripheral arterial disease Retinal vein thrombosis Temporal lobe epilepsy
Long QT syndrome Myoclonus Peripheral neuropathy Retinoblastoma Thyroid related orbitopathy
Long Sightedness Narcolepsy Personality disorder Retinopathy (with laser treatment) Tonic clonic fits
Loss of an eye Neovascularization of the cornea Petit mal seizures Retinopathy fibroplasia Toxoplasma retinitis (toxoplasmosis)
Low blood sugar Neovascularization of the optic nerve head Pinguecula Retinopathy of prematurity Tourette’s syndrome
Lumboperitoneal shunt Night blindness Pink eye (conjunctivitis) Retrobulbar neuritis Transient global amnesia
Lung cancer Nystagmus Pituitary tumour Rubeosis (1 or 2 eyes) Transient ischaemic attack
Lymphoma Obsessive compulsive disorder Posner Schlossman syndrome Schizo-affective disorder Tunnel vision
Macroprolactinoma Obstructive sleep apnoea Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) Schizophrenia Usher syndrome
Macular cyst Ocular albinism Posterior vitreous detachment Scotoma Valve disease or replacement valve
Macular hole Ocular histoplasmosis Presbyopia Seizures Vein occlusion
Macular oedema Ocular myasthenia gravis (with double vision) Proptosis Severe communication disorders Ventricular defibrillator
Malignant brain tumours Ocular myasthenia gravis (without double vision) Psychosis Severe depression Vertigo
Malignant melanoma Ocular rosacea Psychotic depression Shortsightedness (myopia) Vision in one eye only
Manic depressive psychosis Ophthalmoplegia (with double vision) Pterygium Sight in one eye only Visual acuity (reduced)
Marfan’s syndrome Ophthalmoplegia (without double vision) Ptosis Sjogren’s lupus syndrome Vitreous detachment
Medulloblastoma Optic atrophy Pulmonary arterial hypertension Sleep apnoea Vitreous haemorrhage
Melanoma (ocular) Optic neuritis Quadrantanopia Sleepiness (excessive) VP shunts
Memory problems (severe) Recurrent corneal erosion Spinal problems and injuries Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome
Meningioma Stargardt’s (juvenile macular degeneration) Xanthelasma

What Happens If a Medical Condition Affects Your Driving

After contacting the DVLA about your medical condition, they will decide if you can continue driving, have a doctor examine you, or ask you to take a driving assessment or additional eyesight test.

If you have a medical condition that prevents you from driving safely, you may be asked to surrender your driving licence.

This normally happens if the doctor determines that you are not fit to drive and do not meet the minimum requirements for driving.

Moreover, if you have a health condition that lasts for three months or more that affects your driving, you may also need to surrender your driving licence.

Who Can Renew Driving Licence Online for 70 and Over

You can renew your driving licence online as early as three months before you turn 70.

Before you renew online, make sure you have the following requirements:

  • a valid UK passport number
  • your National Insurance number
  • an email address
  • your addresses in the last three years

The online renewal service is available for:

  • Great Britain residents
  • 70 or over, or will be 70 in the next three months
  • Those with an expired British driving licence
  • Those who meet the standard eyesight requirements
  • Those who are not disqualified from driving

How to Renew Driving Licence for 70 and Over


After completing the requirements mentioned above, you can apply online to renew. Follow the steps below to renew your driving licence online for 70 and over.

  1. Visit the page Renew your driving licence if you’re 70 or over or Welsh (Cymraeg) of GOV.UK.
  2. Click Start Now.
  3. Complete the Authentication step (Security of your data, Your details, Your addresses, Your driver record, Security details, National Insurance number, and UK passport number).
  4. Complete the Application step.
  5. Check the Summary to see if it is correct.
  6. Finish the Confirmation page.
  7. Check that the details are correct and click Submit Now.
  8. Wait for an email confirmation with your reference number.
  9. Use the reference number to track your application online.

How to Renew Driving Licence for 70 and Over


If you cannot apply online, you can still renew your driving licence by post. Follow the steps below to apply by post.

  1. Fill out the D46P application form sent by the DVLA.
  2. If you did not receive a form from the DVLA, use the D1 form ‘Application for a Driving Licence’ available in most Post Offices.
  3. Send the application to DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1DH.
  4. Wait for your driving licence to arrive in three weeks. However, it may be longer than three weeks if verification is needed on your personal details or medical condition.

Additional Frequently Asked Questions

Is online application better than post to renew the driving licence for 70 and over?

Online application is faster than post. It takes only a few minutes to complete the application online and you will be able to receive your driving licence within five days.

On the other hand, application by post may take three weeks before you can receive your driving licence.

Is there a fee to renew a driving licence for 70 and over?

No. Renewing your driving licence for 70 and over is free. Using the online service on GOV.UK is free of charge and is the quickest way to renew.

Is the online renewal service available anytime?

The online service is available 24/7 for 365 days a year. Thus, you can renew anytime at your most convenient time.

Can I drive while my driving licence is still being processed?

Yes, you can continue driving while your application is being processed as long as you meet the following requirements:

  • Had a valid driving licence before the application
  • Your application is less than a year
  • Continue driving under the conditions and categories of your previous driving licence
  • Your doctor allows you to continue driving
  • You are not disqualified to drive
  • Your previous licence was not revoked due to medical conditions
  • Not a high-risk offender on or after June 1st 2013

How can I drive safely as a 70 or over driving licence holder?

There are several ways to ensure your safety while driving. You can make vehicle modifications to assist you visually and physically.

Moreover, it is best to have regular checkups and driving assessments. You can also apply to be a Blue Badge holder to be exempted from parking restrictions and have access to designated parking spots.

How to contact the DVLA about my medical condition?

There are several ways to contact DVLA(UK): by phone, email, live chat, and post. Check the Steps on How to Contact DVLA(UK) and the contact information you need.

Those in Northern Ireland should contact the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA).

Final Thoughts

You can never be too old to drive as long as you are fit enough to drive physically and mentally.

The bottom line is that medical conditions affecting one’s ability to drive safely are the only factors that can restrict you from getting a licence and driving on the road. Contact the DVLA about it and get the necessary approval before driving.

Moreover, remember to use GOV.UK’s online service to renew your driving licence fast and hassle-free.

Do not trust third-party services asking for payment to process your application since the GOV.UK is the only website offering the online service for free. It is available 24 hours all year round.

Did you find this guide useful? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

If you have tips and advice about over 70 driving licence restrictions, write a comment below as well.

Further Reading

For further reading about UK licences and driving, refer to Winterville blogs listed below:

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