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Drivers face fines for expired photos on licence cards

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Millions of motorists may be faced with fines from the DVLA if their photograph isn’t updated once it has expired.

If a driver is caught with an out of date photograph they will be issued with a £1000 fine, however the fine will not affect their car insurance.

The DVLA state that after ten years drivers are required to update their photograph and the British Law requires drivers to do this whether they are an active driver or not.

The first photo licence card was introduced in 1998 not only for driving purposes but it can also be used as a form of identification.

If the photo licence has expired it could cause problems for people who use the cards to take internal flights or buy things as it would be deemed as invalid.

With time passing by quickly most people are forgetting to check their expiry date which could bring an unwanted fine.  

A freedom of information request revealed that 1.6 million driver’s photographs have already expired and have not been renewed.

The information also showed that over 3 million motorists will have to renew by the end of 2012 and over the next five years 13 million must renew their photograph.

Motorists are being urged to avoid the risk of any fines by checking the expiry date on the card when it is received.

Research has shown that 30% of drivers with an expired photo licence are aware their licence had expired leaving 70% unaware and at risk of a fine.

It also showed that a majority of drivers are unaware of the consequences that come with holding an expired card with only 29% knowing a fine can be issued.

Drivers also thought that it could make a difference to their car insurance with 31% admitting this, 27% thought it could result in them receiving points on their licence and 13% thought it could mean their car would be confiscated.

To renew a licence costs £20 with a new photo displayed on the card which can be renewed online, by post or at a selected post office.

If a driver has a paper licence they are not affected by the ten yearly procedure and only need to notify the DVLA if there is any change of address or name.

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By Amanda Bainbridge