DVLA requirements for alcohol misuse or dependence.

Convicted Driver Insurance

price1367

TTC Group
I was looking for DVLA guidance of alcohol dependence or misuse.
I came across this from the medical advisory panel meeting in October 2019, but it seems that since then they have lowered their expectations for the CDT score.
It sets out hope for people who feel that they face a life without alcohol.......


”Alcohol Dependence
Over the last few meetings panel has reviewed the medical standards surrounding alcohol dependence and persistent alcohol misuse. As a result, the agency has changed their internal process and guidance. The panel was asked to review.
The current process for confirmed alcohol dependence in Group 1 drivers is as follows:
A driving licence may be issued after abstinence has been demonstrated for a 12 month period. In order to continue to be licensed, abstinence must continue for the next 2 years.
Licences issued after that first 12 months will be reviewed on a yearly basis.
After three years of abstinence, DVLA may apply some discretion for those individuals who are demonstrating they are in a better prognostic group. An example would be those who are able to demonstrate controlled drinking.
Controlled drinking means no more than 14 units per week, no episodes of binge drinking (6 or more units in a single session), and CDT percentage no greater than1.6.
A full duration unrestricted licence can only be considered after five years free of alcohol misuse/dependence.”

I would add that the meeting was also informed of the outcome of appeals against them refusing a licence where they were taken to court. some food for thought before spending big money on promises from ‘expert’ solicitors:

“14. Appeals Data
Just over half of DVLA summons received in the period from April 2019 to September 2019 were related to alcohol and drugs cases. No appeals have been upheld in this period.”

public 0% DVLA 100% !!!!!!
 
Last edited:

topchippyles

Well-known member
I was looking for DVLA guidance of alcohol dependence or misuse.
I came across this from the medical advisory panel meeting in October 2019, but it seems that since then they have lowered their expectations for the CDT score.
It sets out hope for people who feel that they face a life without alcohol.......


”Alcohol Dependence
Over the last few meetings panel has reviewed the medical standards surrounding alcohol dependence and persistent alcohol misuse. As a result, the agency has changed their internal process and guidance. The panel was asked to review.
The current process for confirmed alcohol dependence in Group 1 drivers is as follows:
A driving licence may be issued after abstinence has been demonstrated for a 12 month period. In order to continue to be licensed, abstinence must continue for the next 2 years.
Licences issued after that first 12 months will be reviewed on a yearly basis.
After three years of abstinence, DVLA may apply some discretion for those individuals who are demonstrating they are in a better prognostic group. An example would be those who are able to demonstrate controlled drinking.
Controlled drinking means no more than 14 units per week, no episodes of binge drinking (6 or more units in a single session), and CDT percentage no greater than1.6.
A full duration unrestricted licence can only be considered after five years free of alcohol misuse/dependence.”

I would add that the meeting was also informed of the outcome of appeals against them refusing a licence where they were taken to court. some food for thought before spending big money on promises from ‘expert’ solicitors:

“14. Appeals Data
Just over half of DVLA summons received in the period from April 2019 to September 2019 were related to alcohol and drugs cases. No appeals have been upheld in this period.”

public 0% DVLA 100% !!!!!!
This will clarify a lot of questions that get asked on here. Maye Moderator could tag it to the homepage just a thought but good info as always Mr price (y)
 

Recovered22

Well-known member
This will clarify a lot of questions that get asked on here. Maye Moderator could tag it to the homepage just a thought but good info as always Mr price (y)

I agree, this post should be stickied to the top of the website as it covers the biggest reccuring question on this forum. Cheers Price!
 

KJB

Member
I was looking for DVLA guidance of alcohol dependence or misuse.
I came across this from the medical advisory panel meeting in October 2019, but it seems that since then they have lowered their expectations for the CDT score.
It sets out hope for people who feel that they face a life without alcohol.......


”Alcohol Dependence
Over the last few meetings panel has reviewed the medical standards surrounding alcohol dependence and persistent alcohol misuse. As a result, the agency has changed their internal process and guidance. The panel was asked to review.
The current process for confirmed alcohol dependence in Group 1 drivers is as follows:
A driving licence may be issued after abstinence has been demonstrated for a 12 month period. In order to continue to be licensed, abstinence must continue for the next 2 years.
Licences issued after that first 12 months will be reviewed on a yearly basis.
After three years of abstinence, DVLA may apply some discretion for those individuals who are demonstrating they are in a better prognostic group. An example would be those who are able to demonstrate controlled drinking.
Controlled drinking means no more than 14 units per week, no episodes of binge drinking (6 or more units in a single session), and CDT percentage no greater than1.6.
A full duration unrestricted licence can only be considered after five years free of alcohol misuse/dependence.”

I would add that the meeting was also informed of the outcome of appeals against them refusing a licence where they were taken to court. some food for thought before spending big money on promises from ‘expert’ solicitors:

“14. Appeals Data
Just over half of DVLA summons received in the period from April 2019 to September 2019 were related to alcohol and drugs cases. No appeals have been upheld in this period.”

public 0% DVLA 100% !!!!!!
This is really helpful information, thank you.
Does anyone know how the DVLA score or record in drinks disclosed during a medical at all please? My partner had his medical at the beginning of this week following a six month licence revoke for misuse of alcohol. His last alcoholic drink was on 20 Feb and the doctor asked him what he drank that day, he replied 2 glasses of wine. However due to his nervous state he forgot to clarify they were standard measures of 175ml. He is beside himself with worry that the doctor will record this as a large measure and he will have messed up his chance to have his licence reissued. Any advice or thoughts on how the doctor or DVLA is likely to judge would be greatly appreciated, especially if we need to start “worst Case scenario“ planning! Thank you
 

Recovered22

Well-known member
This is really helpful information, thank you.
Does anyone know how the DVLA score or record in drinks disclosed during a medical at all please? My partner had his medical at the beginning of this week following a six month licence revoke for misuse of alcohol. His last alcoholic drink was on 20 Feb and the doctor asked him what he drank that day, he replied 2 glasses of wine. However due to his nervous state he forgot to clarify they were standard measures of 175ml. He is beside himself with worry that the doctor will record this as a large measure and he will have messed up his chance to have his licence reissued. Any advice or thoughts on how the doctor or DVLA is likely to judge would be greatly appreciated, especially if we need to start “worst Case scenario“ planning! Thank you

The guidelines are 14 units per week, even 2 large glasses of wine in one sitting is not over the 14 unit per week recommendation. Unless your husband has alcohol problems on record 2 glasses of wine is completely fine to declare.
 

KJB

Member
The guidelines are 14 units per week, even 2 large glasses of wine in one sitting is not over the 14 unit per week recommendation. Unless your husband has alcohol problems on record 2 glasses of wine is completely fine to declareOh Thank you, no he doesn’t have any alcohol problems, but was worried they might class it as 6 units in a session. He hasn’t had more than 14 units per week for over 12 months & certainly no more than 4 or 5 units at a time. It’s been a very long drawn out and frustrating 12 months to get to this stage. Hopefully all will be resolved soon. Thank you
 

KJB

Member
Thank you grice96, no he has no alcohol problems, he has not drunk more than 14 units per week for over 12 months and no more 4 or 5 in a single session. He was worried it might be classed as 6 units. It has a been long drawn out and frustrating journey to finally get to this stage. Hopefully all will be resolved soon. Thank you again for sharing your considerable knowledge and wisdom
 

Hobgoblin

Well-known member
Anyone know how long a doctor has to report alcohol misuse or dependence to the DVLA from the moment they became aware?

I stupidly told my doctor 5 years ago that I drank a little too much, during a consultation, and it's presumably on my record.
 

price1367

TTC Group
They would not be reporting it now, after 5 years. BUT they would report what you told them if they get a DVLA medical form to complete within 6 years.
 

Guygibson

Well-known member
So basically you have zero chances of getting your license back early even if you have totally gave up alcohol is that right
 

BigTom

Well-known member
So basically you have zero chances of getting your license back early even if you have totally gave up alcohol is that right
No this is not the case. DVLA just need assurances that somebody is not a risk, to do this they rely on the medical, questionnaires, other agency inputs and GP interaction. If someone says they have given up drinking completely, how are DVLA to know if this is truthful? That is where keeping in contact with your GP comes into play - having the GP on board is a big help in getting a licence back with previous dependence or misuse issues.
 

Guygibson

Well-known member
Arrrrhh right i have given up drinking since being caught a year ago I wonder if its worth contacting my doctor and informing him of this then
 

C J 1980

Well-known member
Afternoon

PC 1367 Price - thanks for adding this thread. Some food for thought for everybody I reckon.

Can I just clarify something - I am due to do my second HRO medical at the end of the year as I am subject to a temporary 12 month licence after serving a 22 month ban. When I was re-instated in January, I asked the woman from the DVLA who telephoned me - is there a requirement to have regular LFTs now I am back on the road? Her answer was a straight ''NO''. However, looking ahead to my second DVLA medical - do the DVLA write to your GP again to confirm if there are any 'new' medical issues that have arose during the 12 months back on the road?

It seems to me that the onus of proving abstinence can be a little bit of a 'grey' area once you are back on the road. Clearly, everyone needs to pass each CDT but is there more evidence needed from the DVLA to ensure the driver is 'behaving' themselves?

Regards

CJ
 

price1367

TTC Group
CJ,
My view is that once you are back on the road, then you declare self abstinence and if you have a low CDT score DVLA may just check with your GP but not ask for formal proof of abstinence. Just in case, it would do no harm to show a clear LFT result at the half way point.
and I am not PC1367 Price, I am well retired (19 years) if you want to be formal, at least use my proper title: Sgt 1367 Price !!!!
 

Luna2000

Well-known member
No this is not the case. DVLA just need assurances that somebody is not a risk, to do this they rely on the medical, questionnaires, other agency inputs and GP interaction. If someone says they have given up drinking completely, how are DVLA to know if this is truthful? That is where keeping in contact with your GP comes into play - having the GP on board is a big help in getting a licence back with previous dependence or misuse issues.
Their CDT results will generally indicate if they are telling the truth.

I have not drunk any alcohol for 2 years and a Medichecks CDT reading on the 15th July 2021 came back as 0.2, which I would imagine would back up the total abstinence statement.
 

sillynurse

Well-known member
Just reading through this. I'm unsure whether to declare 'misuse' or 'dependence' at my medical as dependent seems to be quite a broad definition.
Its documented with my GP from around sept 2019 that I had started drinking heavily after the death of my dad but I don't know if this would be classed as dependency. I was getting help from a local recovery service to cut down when I was caught drink driving.
I've never been dependent in the sense I have had withdrawals and was able to stop for periods but I definitely abused alcohol over a period of around 12-14 months.
Admittedly I'm now member of AA and have 6 months complete abstinence which is recorded with my GP.
There's just different definitions of dependency I don't want to be accused of lying if I declare misuse and my GP has a different opinion.
My ban ends December 1st 2021 so if I am deemed as misuse I will have the required sober time. If I am classed as dependent I will have the required time in March 2022. I know there will most likely be a delay getting my licence back anyhow but because I have sent my application to the key worker address I'm hoping it won't be a massive wait.
 

Polly3

Well-known member
Just reading through this. I'm unsure whether to declare 'misuse' or 'dependence' at my medical as dependent seems to be quite a broad definition.
Its documented with my GP from around sept 2019 that I had started drinking heavily after the death of my dad but I don't know if this would be classed as dependency. I was getting help from a local recovery service to cut down when I was caught drink driving.
I've never been dependent in the sense I have had withdrawals and was able to stop for periods but I definitely abused alcohol over a period of around 12-14 months.
Admittedly I'm now member of AA and have 6 months complete abstinence which is recorded with my GP.
There's just different definitions of dependency I don't want to be accused of lying if I declare misuse and my GP has a different opinion.
My ban ends December 1st 2021 so if I am deemed as misuse I will have the required sober time. If I am classed as dependent I will have the required time in March 2022. I know there will most likely be a delay getting my licence back anyhow but because I have sent my application to the key worker address I'm hoping it won't be a massive wait.
I’d suggest speaking to your GP. I seem to recall that the questions at DVLA medical and in the Q’aire they sent to my GP ( given I was a HRO) asked about whether I’d had medication to stop me drinking , or been referred to rehab . Also asked re whether alcohol had impacted on me / if I’d had mental health issues etc . I’m assuming that if you’ve been in rehab / required medication they may class you as dependant??? But not otherwise ??? By the way : well done for going to AA. It doesn’t work for me, but I do respect it’s value . No need to “ admit it “!!!! The term “ alcoholic” is not helpful or particularly informative in my view and just because you go to AA doesn’t mean you are classifiable as dependent. Good luck with it .
 

sillynurse

Well-known member
Thanks polly ! No I've not been to rehab or needed any medication to stop either. Yeah AA isn't just about putting the drink down its like CBT to help our thinking as well.
Thank you for that. I might try & see if I can speak to my GP again. I went to see her in Aug and I didn't think to ask her opinion I just wanted to give her an update on where I was at and make sure she had my sober date recorded on my notes.
I just want to be honest but I'm also desperate to get back on the road! Thanks xx
 

C J 1980

Well-known member
Sillynurse

The question of determining whether a person would be classed as 'dependant' or 'misuser' is one I can't even answer!!!!

I was drinking round the clock for several weeks in late 2018/early 2019, but my first real issue with alcohol was around 2013/14.

I was hospitalised three times in a year for my drinking and I even went for counselling to deal with the problem, which did become an addition in my view. Once I had the taste of the amber nectar, I couldn't stop until I was unconscious or physically ill.

I genuinely anticipated being classed as 'dependant' by the DVLA, but they have classed me as a 'misuser'!!!! Maybe because, I did 15 months sobriety prior to my medical, this may have influenced the DVLA decision - who knows? It was a surprise though.

From what I know - the DVLA are a little more strict with dependancy, than they are with misuse. Because, I didn't know one way or the other which category I fell into, I aimed for at least 12 months of sobriety prior to the conclusion of my driving ban just to be on the safe side.

CJ
 
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