Retaking a Driving Test After a Drink Driving Ban / Disqualification
It is entirely at the discretion of the sentencing court as to whether or not a convicted drink driver will be required to retake their driving test.
The discretion to order a retest is likely to be exercised where there is evidence of inexperience, incompetence or infirmity, or the disqualification period is lengthy (i.e. a number of years).
Retaking Driving Test after Disqualification
First of all, you will need to apply for your provisional driving licence, you can do this by completing a D1 Pack - Application for a driving licence for a car, moped or motorcycle. You will then have to take steps to pass your theory test and practical driving test (or extended practical driving test).
An extended retest may be required (at the magistrates discretion) if:
- A person is convicted of a driving offence where a driving disqualification is obligatory. Drink driving offences where disqualification is obligatory include:
If a person is convicted of any of the above offences (where disqualification is obligatory) and the magistrates state they must re-take their driving test, it will be the extended driving test that applies.
A standard retest may be required (at the magistrates discretion) if:
- A person is convicted of any endorsable offence where disqualification is not obligatory. Endorsable drink driving offences where disqualification is not obligatory include:
If a person is convicted of any of the above offences (where disqualification is not obligatory) and the magistrates state that they must retake their driving test, it will be the standard driving test that applies.
The Theory Test
In order to pass the theory test you will need to brush up on your knowledge of the Highway Code and your hazard perceptions skills. You MUST complete and pass the theory test first, in order to take your practical driving test. The theory test is in two parts:
The first part of the theory test consists of multiple choice questions based on the Highway Code.
For cars and motorcycles: you will be asked 50 questions in 57 minutes and you must get 43 questions out of 50 correct in order to pass the first part of the test.
For lorries and buses: you will be asked 100 questions in 115 minutes and you must get 85 questions out of 100 correct in order to pass the first part of the test.
After completing the first part of the test, you will be allowed a 3 minute break before the second part of the test begins. The second part of the theory test is based on hazard perception.
You will be shown video clips which will feature everyday road scenes. In each clip there will be at least one hazard, but some may contain two hazards. The quicker you respond to each hazard the more points you get, with a maximum of 5 points allowed for each hazard identified.
For cars and motorcycles: you will be shown 14 video clips and you must score 44 out of 75 in order to pass.
For lorries and buses: you must score 50 out of 75 in order to pass. There is a separate lorry and bus hazard perception test in which you will be shown 19 video clips, you must score 67 out of 100 in order to pass.
More information on the hazard perception part of the test including a sample video clip and a free mock hazard perception test can be found here.
First of all you should find a qualified and approved driving instructor (ADI) in your local area and take appropriate lessons in order to brush up on your driving skills.
The practical driving test will asses you overall ability to drive safely and within the rules and regulations set forth in the highway code. At the beginning of the practical driving test you will be asked to perform an eyesight test. You must be able to read a number plate that is a certain distance away (approximately 20 feet). If you fail the eyesight test, your practical driving test will be aborted.
You will be asked two questions on vehicle safety/maintenance during your practical driving test and your driving ability will be under constant assessment in a variety of everyday driving situations. Your reversing and parking skills will also be assessed and you may be asked to perform an emergency stop.
The standard driving test will last approximately 40 minutes.
The extended driving test will last approximately 70 minutes and will cover a wide variety of roads usually including dual carriageways.
You are allowed to make up to 15 minor faults and still pass, 16 minor faults or above and you will fail. If you make one serious/dangerous fault, you will also fail the test.