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Renewal phase of photo driver licence begins

LTSA online
A new phase of the photo driver licensing system begins today with the mail-out of licence renewal notices to motorists who last May were issued with a photo licence with a one year expiry date.

Last year around 150,000 drivers were issued with a photo licence valid for one year from the issue date.

More than 2 million photo driver licences have been issued in total since the photo driver licence system began on 3 May 1999. Licences were issued for periods up to 10 years.

The Director of Land Transport Safety, Reg Barrett, said that from next year onwards between 200,000 and 300,000 drivers annually will need to renew their photo driver licence.

“The renewal at a regular interval is to ensure that the photo on the licence reflects a realistic likeness of the licence holder. It also ensures that licence conditions are updated.”

Drivers who have a licence due for renewal need to do so on or before the expiry date shown on their licence – this is not necessarily their birthday.
Drivers in this category will be mailed a notice of renewal and a renewal application form. Renewal mail-outs will continue at weekly intervals from now on, based on information given when drivers first upgraded to a photo driver licence.

Anyone who does not receive a renewal application form by mail can complete one at a driver licensing agency.

A driver must renew his or her licence before it expires whether or not an information pack is received. To renew a photo driver licence, a licence holder needs to fill in a renewal application form, have a new photo taken, provide a signature for the new licence and pass an eyesight screening check.

A driver must also bring along two forms of suitable identification, one of which can be their current photo driver licence and the other must prove their current address. A ten-year licence costs $29.50.

The new photo licence will be valid for 10 years from the date of issue unless the driver is 75 years old, in which case the licence will be valid for five years. From the age of 80 a driver must renew their licence every two years.

A motorist caught driving on an expired licence will be stopped from driving and fined $400. If caught twice they face another $400 fine, and having their car impounded until they present a valid licence.

Licence holders who have R, T, F and W endorsements will have these renewed automatically as part of their photo licence renewal.

Other endorsement holders (P, V, I and O) will be notified separately when these endorsements become due for renewal.

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