Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has today confirmed further amendments to the Driving Licence Regulations to further extend the validity of theory test pass certificates for learner drivers during the Covid-19 crisis.
Theory test pass certificates which have already been extended by 8 months and will expire from 1 November 2020 onwards will have their validity period extended by a further four months. In addition, theory test pass certificates which expire between 1 November 2020 and 30 June 2021, and which have not already benefited from an extension, will have their validity period extended by eight months.
Announcing the news Minister Mallon said:
“My priority during the covid crisis continues to be to keep people safe and to do what we can to minimise disruption and inconvenience to our customers.
“In July I asked my officials to amend the Driving Licence Regulations to extend the validity of theory test pass certificates, which expire between 1 March and 31 October 2020 by eight months and the validity of off-road motorcycle test pass certificates.
“I will be bringing forward further legislation in this area, to be in place by December, to help further mitigate the impact on customers due to the cessation of practical driving tests as a result of the latest Covid restrictions. I have asked officials to apply a further four month extension to those customers who have already benefited from the initial 8 month, bringing their total extension up to 12 months. In addition those customers whose theory test certificates expire between 1 November 2020 and 30 June 2021, and who have not already benefited from an extension, will have their validity period extended by eight months.
“This legislative change will benefit approximately 4,000 people.
“These are challenging times for us all and I appreciate the frustrations felt by learner drivers unable to take their practical driving tests. These changes will hopefully bring some welcome relief for those drivers waiting to book a practical driving test and will ensure they are not further inconvenienced.”
There is no requirement to further extend the validity period of off-road motorcycle test pass certificates as these tests have continued to be delivered from 6 July 2020.
Notes to editors:
- Certificates which have already been extended by 8 months and will expire from 1 November 2020 onwards will have their validity period extended by a further four months. Therefore, a certificate that was extended for 8 months from 1 March 2020, will now be valid until 28 February 2021. Certificates which expire between 1 November 2020 and 30 June 2021, and which have not already benefited from an extension, will have their validity period extended by eight months.
- This will require an amendment to the Motor Vehicles (Driving Licences) Regulations (NI) 1996.
- All media queries should be directed to the Department for Infrastructure Press Office at: email@example.com. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.
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