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The extended practical driving test

Retesting for disqualified drivers and riders was introduced on 6 January 1992. The purpose of retesting disqualified drivers is not meant as punishment, but is a road safety measure aimed at checking the driver's competence. Courts can impose an extended driving test on anyone who is:

convicted of dangerous driving offences

convicted of other offences involving obligatory disqualification Loss of your driving licence for dangerous driving or related offences involving obligatory disqualification means that you return to 'learner' status - normal rules for provisional licence holders will then apply.

You must therefore take and pass a theory test for the category of vehicle you intend to take an extended practical driving test in.

The extended driving test is longer and therefore more demanding. It lasts for about 70 minutes and covers a wide variety of roads, usually including dual carriageways. You are advised to prepare by taking suitable instruction from an approved driving instructor (ADI).

Disqualified riders

Following disqualification from riding under the Road Traffic Act, all riders are required to complete compulsory basic training (CBT) to validate their new provisional driving licence when it is issued.

This applies in all cases, including those where the person previously held full motorcycle entitlement. A DL196 issued prior to the disqualification period is invalidated by the disqualification.

Bus and lorry drivers

If a driver is convicted of a dangerous driving offence, which involves a period of disqualification, all bus and lorry entitlement is automatically lost regardless of the type of vehicle being driven at the time of the offence.

The decision about whether that entitlement can be regained is a matter for the Licensing Authority (LA). The options are:

the entitlement may be refused on the grounds that you have shown yourself to be an unfit and improper person to hold a vocational driving licence

the court may require you to take an extended car driving test to regain your category B licence

you may be required to take a driving test for each additional category of vehicle that you want to drive

the additional category (categories) may be restored without further requirement, in exceptional circumstances

It is important to remember that a vocational driving licence can not be issued on its own. You must possess a valid, full driving licence entitlement for category B (car) for your vocational licence to be valid. If you lose your car licence entitlement you lose your vocational licence with it.

Applying for a retest

If you have to take a category B retest you can apply for a provisional licence at the end of the period of disqualification.

The normal rules for provisional licence holders apply:

you must be supervised by a person who is at least 21 years old and has held (and still holds) a full licence for at least three years for the vehicle being driven L plates, or D plates in Wales, must be displayed to the front and rear of the vehicle

driving on motorways is not allowed

buses and lorries can not be driven if you have only got a provisional car licence (category B)

There are higher fees for extended tests, so you must make it clear when you apply for a test which type of test you want

source: © Crown copyright (correct at 21/1/11)

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