Drivers face £1,000 licence fine

Thousands of drivers in the UK have been warned they could be unwittingly breaking the law by not realising their photocard licence has expired.

Those who do remember to renew will have to pay an "unreasonable" charge of £17.50 or face a fine of up to £1,000, the RAC has said.

The DVLA admits more than 4,000 drivers whose licences had expired by the end of August have yet to apply for a renewal, despite reminder letters being sent out by the DVLA two months before the expiry date.

The new-style licences were launched in July 2008 but, unlike the paper versions they replaced, the photocards expire after 10 years.

The holder is licensed to drive until their 70th birthday but the picture on their photocard needs to be replaced every decade to remain valid.

Drivers who were among the first to receive a photocard licence could be unaware that they need to take action. If their licence is checked and found to be out of date they could be fined up to £1,000 for failing to renew it.

Adrian Tink, the RAC's motoring strategist said: "It is no surprise that once again the motorist gets hit in the pocket just to stay on the road. It's unreasonable, you are paying an administration fee just to change a picture."

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