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Penalties of Driving Without a Full Licence

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 18 Oct 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Full Licence Provisional

Many people are under the impression that driving without a full licence would carry the same penalties as driving while disqualified but they are separate offences. Around 800,000 drivers in the UK are unlicensed according to an AA survey, and penalty points and fines can be applied if convicted.

Unlicensed Drivers in the UK

One out of every 40 drivers on UK roads is unlicensed according to a survey undertaken by the Automobile Association (AA). This figure includes drivers who have been disqualified, provisional licence holders and motorists who have never held any type of licence. The survey points out that the majority of unlicensed drivers are young males. Many unlicensed drivers are ashamed to admit that they have failed the driving test and will simply begin driving without a licence. But taking to the road without a full driving licence can lead to penalty points, fines and increased insurance premiums.

Rules for Provisional Licence Holders

Drivers cannot learn to drive in the UK without a provisional driving licence. Learner drivers can only drive a motor vehicle if accompanied by a fully licensed adult. The accompanying driver must be over the age of 21. The accompanying driver must also have held a full licence for at least three years. The vehicle must be insured for the learner driver and ‘L’ plates must be displayed when the learner is in control of the vehicle.

Failing to Comply With Licence Conditions

There are terms and conditions that apply to driving licences including provisional driving licences. If a driver breaks the terms and conditions of the licence they will be committing an offence and can be charged. A provisional driver who drives without ‘L’ plates can be charged under a PL10 conviction code, which is Driving Without ‘L’ Plates. The act of driving without the correct ‘L’ plates can be enough to have penalty points applied to a provisional licence. Breaking the conditions of the licence can also lead to fines and a driving disqualification depending on the offence.

Driving Without a Full Licence

Driving without a full licence is an offence and three to six penalty points can be applied. Driving without a full licence comes under the LC10 conviction code. This offence can also lead to a maximum fine of £1000. Courts also have discretionary powers to ban the convicted driver from obtaining a full licence for a specified period of time. If the driver is not entitled to drive the vehicle under the terms and conditions of their licence then this can be an endorsable offence.

Endorsable and Non Endorsable Driving Offences

An endorsable offence means that penalty points will be applied and will appear on a licence for a set period of time. The penalty points can stay on a licence for four or eleven years. It may be the case that driving without a full licence may be a non endorsable driving offence; no points but a period of disqualification. This can happen if the driver has a full licence but it has been suspended by the DVLA without the driver’s knowledge. This would mean the motorist is driving without a full licence but has not yet been notified that their licence has been revoked or suspended.

Driving Without a Full Licence and Insurance

Driving without insurance is viewed as a serious matter and if convicted can lead to six to eight penalty points. This offence can also lead to a fine of up to £5,000. In the view of most insurers a driver who breaks the conditions of their licence, for example driving without a full licence, will also invalidate the vehicle insurance. This means drivers will not only be driving without a full licence but also driving without insurance. Again, the courts do have discretionary powers to ban a driver from obtaining a licence for a set period of time for this offence.

Driving Without a Full Licence and the Consequences

Driving without a full licence may not seem serious to unlicensed drivers but the potential consequences simply aren’t worth the risk. Consequences can include:

  • A fine of up to £1000 plus three to six penalty points
  • Banned from obtaining a full licence for a set period of time
  • A higher fine of up to £5000 if convicted of driving without insurance
  • Insurers will impose higher insurance premiums for those with driving convictions, penalty points and/or a disqualification
  • Additional expense of legal representation
  • Those looking for driving employment may ruin their chances with a driving conviction on their licence
Motorists who have been charged with a driving offence are advised to seek legal advice and representation. The powers of the courts regarding driving offences can vary between countries, and a solicitor will be able to advise on the potential consequences and the best line of defence.

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[Add a Comment]
i was not ferling well and i called my brother to take me home . he drove me home in my car. but because i have a fully comp insurance i was of the view that he can drive it whilst i am the car . unfortunately he passed a red light 0.9 sec . they now sent a letter to me . if i say that i wSthe ibe driving i will get fine and penalty and possibly refreshers course .if i say he was driving i will still be orisecuted for allowing him to drive my car . i am so confusedandworried . any adviice
allli - 18-Oct-18 @ 12:36 AM
I hit someone's car and I have provisional licence she called the police so I have been caught now am waiting for the police letter in my house am worried about what will be in the letter what will be my punishment pls?
Thess - 3-Oct-18 @ 2:53 AM
I was driving on provisional licence and bumped the car in front will my ins still cover it
Tilly - 21-Sep-18 @ 7:31 PM
I drove a car at 36 miles speed on 30miles zone. Police send me a NIP for speeding. I had a qualified driver with me but had no L plate on rear side, i am on provisional license and has valid insurance for this car. My question is will be charged for speeding or will they punish me for the L plate as well.
bips - 14-Sep-18 @ 10:50 PM
Can I move my car from one parking space to another without being supervised in case of an emergency?
anito - 23-Aug-18 @ 12:26 PM
Tee - Your Question:
My Question:I drove our car with my provisional licence with my wife beside me who has a full licence without an L place to an unknown area. The police sent section 172 notice to our house stating that I crosses the yellow box while the light turned yellow. I have asked her to fill the form with my name as the driver on that day. What advice have you for me?

Our Response:
Having identified yourself, you will probably be penalised for the yellow box/traffic light offence and also for driving (as a provisional driver) without L plates.
NoPenaltyPoints - 10-Aug-18 @ 2:16 PM
My Question: I drove our car with my provisional licence with my wife beside me who has a full licence without an L place to an unknown area. The police sent section 172 notice to our housestating that I crosses the yellow box while the light turned yellow. I have asked her to fill the form with my name as the driver on that day. What advice have you for me?
Tee - 9-Aug-18 @ 2:46 PM
I was pulled over last night in a sting operation for not having L plates on my 125 cc , I have previously been banned for 22 months for drink driving and driving within accordance of my lisence , thay said I will receive a letter telling me what happens next , what sort of penalty will it get ? I’m really worried about it
Cowboy - 28-Jul-18 @ 10:54 AM
My partner was caught speeding whilst driving his children home. He is not insured or have a license. I was at work at the time and got the letter in the mail and when I checked the picture it was clear it was him. He already admitted this to me. What would the penalty be?
Kez - 20-Jul-18 @ 10:00 PM
Hi, would be grateful for some advice. Had an accident 2 years ago, driving on a provisional licence without supervision but insured as a provisional driver. She came into my pathway. I risked it to go to the shop, didn't again after that. I then got my licence a year ago. She is now taking me to court, which I'm fighting but I don't know if I will.receive a penalty? Any advice would be brilliant
Momma - 5-Jul-18 @ 10:21 PM
Hi, my father was cought driving without insurance! He has 6 points on his license but he have EU driving license! He prob is going to the court! What could happend?
Dan - 25-Jun-18 @ 9:56 PM
DT- Your Question:
What happens if you drive a car without a licence, however added to someone else's policy as a second driver and they know the person does not have a licence but lied?

Our Response:
You will be penalised for driving a car without the relevant insurance and also for driving without a licence.The other person will also be fined for allowing the vehicle to be driven without the correct insurance.
NoPenaltyPoints - 6-Jun-18 @ 12:37 PM
what happens if you drive a car without a licence, however added to someone else's policy as a second driver and they know the person does not have a licence but lied?
DT - 5-Jun-18 @ 1:58 PM
Hi there , I was pulled over by a police officer on a motorbike which exceeded my license category as I only have a provisional but have a full car license, the bike was also uninsured so what could the implications be for this?
Leeroy - 27-May-18 @ 8:34 PM
Ltho26 - Your Question:
Hi there I was cough driving with no licecen or insurance for my first time I took all charges will I still need to go to court ? The police officers said I would get a letter but never said anything about court

Our Response:
You can get either a fixed penatly of £300 and 6 penalty points or if it goes to court you may get an unlimited fine or a disqualification. If you weren't told at the time, the decision will be made by the police/central ticketing office over whether a court summons or FPN will be appropriate.
NoPenaltyPoints - 22-May-18 @ 2:29 PM
Hi there i was cough driving with no licecen or insurance for my first time i took all charges will i still need to go to court ? The police officers said i would get a letter but never said anything about court
Ltho26 - 16-May-18 @ 11:17 AM
Hi, a friend of mine and her husband have been in the UK for 2years. They can both drive in their own country but time has expired to drive on the licence of their country so they both have a UK provisional licence. They have just bought a car taxed it and are both insured on it. Can you tell me,so that I can pass the information on, if they can drive alone without L plates on the car , and if not, and one of them does what the consequences would be if anything were to happen or if they were to be caught by the police. Thank you for your help.
emm - 7-May-18 @ 11:47 PM
Gaz - Your Question:
I veered of the road and crashed my car into a retaining wall.I was not speeding,have a witness.I had my granddaughter in the car.We were not injured.I am a provisional holder.No L plates I was not accompanied.I had Insurance?She is the most precious thing in my life.I will never get over,how I could have badly injured her.Its my first driving offence.No penalty point.Can you give me a roughguide, as to what my punishment might be.Kind Regards

Our Response:
Because you crashed, you may be penalised for careless driving or driving withour due care and attention. You say you had insurance, but any insurance you had would be rendered invalid because you were driving unaccompanied and this is not allowed while on a provisional licence. There is also a penalty for driving without L plates. Here is a summary:
Driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence - £1,000 fine / Discretionary disqualification 3 to 6 points
Driving without insurance - Unlimited fine / Discretionary disqualification- 6 to 8 points
Careless and inconsiderate driving - Unlimited fine / Discretionary disqualification 3 to 9 points
or Dangerous driving - 2 years’ imprisonment / Unlimited fine / Obligatory disqualification 3 to 11 (if exceptionally not disqualified)
Driving without L Plates £100 fine plus 3 points
NoPenaltyPoints - 4-Apr-18 @ 3:15 PM
I veered of the road and crashed my car into a retaining wall.I was not speeding,have a witness.I had my granddaughter in the car.We were not injured.I am a provisional holder.No L plates I was not accompanied.I had Insurance?She is the most precious thing in my life.I will never get over,how I could have badly injured her.Its my first driving offence.No penalty point.Can you give me a rough guide, as to what my punishment might be.Kind Regards
Gaz - 2-Apr-18 @ 3:03 PM
Hi I got flashed at night by speed camera on 30 road did 36, but i do not hold full UK driving license and i wasn’t insured on the car but it was my friend car she got a letter and she filled a form out saying me was the driver at the time of driving and she book a speed awareness course on my name. What do i do now??
Sam_KS - 1-Apr-18 @ 9:14 PM
I was banned from driving due to being over the limit, the ban was up and i drove a car for a carer. It was an open insurance policy that had been changed. I was involved in a crash, the other driver was at fault. The police checked and said i had no license and wasnt on the insurance. What could be outcome?
Ben - 1-Apr-18 @ 2:14 PM
I was caught driving with no insurance and and only a provisonal licence at the time i have not recieved my summons to court yet but i have recently passed my driving test what will be the outcome in court if i was to get 6 points would i lose my licence after ive only just passed it ??
Gilbert - 25-Mar-18 @ 9:22 PM
Tom - Your Question:
Hi I have just been pulled for speeding over 100mph I have bin passed 14 months he said I will get 6 points and a big fine but dont think they will take my licence ? Is he just saying that ? Or is it ever possible ?

Our Response:
If you only passed your test 14 months ago, the new drivers act applies - your licence is revoked if you incur 6 or more points. If you were travelling at 100mph or more you will get a court summons.
NoPenaltyPoints - 19-Mar-18 @ 10:12 AM
Hi I have just been pulled for speeding over 100mph I have bin passed 14 months he said I will get 6 points and a big fine butdont think they will take my licence ? Is he just saying that ? Or is it ever possible ?
Tom - 16-Mar-18 @ 3:56 AM
i drive a car with provisionally licensed and without insuranceand i hat anaccident what can happen to me?
bad lok - 14-Mar-18 @ 8:50 AM
Adriana - Your Question:
Hi.im a provisional driver.what will happen if I get caught driving unaccompanied? Thanks

Our Response:
You can be fined up to £1,000 and get up to 6 penalty points on your provisional licence if you drive without the right supervision. Also note that any penalty points on your provisional licence that haven’t expired will be carried over to your full licence when you pass your test. However, your licence will be cancelled if you get any further penalty points that take you up to a total of 6 or more within 2 years of passing your driving test. This means you'll have to apply and pay for a new provisional licence and pass both theory and practical parts of the driving or riding test again to get a full licence.
NoPenaltyPoints - 6-Mar-18 @ 2:57 PM
Hiya! Cought by police Nov 2017 with no license and insurance but have shown my papers stating that's my own car,provisional license and L plates on car. Told me to wait for a month but its march 2018. Help me out what will be the outcome?
Dave - 6-Mar-18 @ 2:25 PM
Hi.im a provisional driver .what will happen if i get caught drivingunaccompanied? Thanks
Adriana - 4-Mar-18 @ 3:51 PM
I was driving my friend's car with out full provisionallicence and also I am not insure. Policecaught me and they took all my detail. What would be the penalty.thank you
Awta - 1-Mar-18 @ 5:14 AM
Mosa- Your Question:
Hi,Just been caught by the police driving without driving license, the car was decaraled SORN and no insurance. What will happen next?

Our Response:
You will receive a court summons. The courts will decide what penalty will be suitable.
NoPenaltyPoints - 27-Feb-18 @ 11:45 AM
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