Points on your licence: What does it mean?

Points are added to your driving licence when you’re convicted of a motoring offence, such as speeding or driving under the influence. The number of points awarded reflects the severity of the crime. Points stay on your licence for 4 or 11 years, depending on the offence. If you’re given 12 or more penalty points in a three-year period, you can be disqualified from driving.

Points on your licence: The long answer

Points on your licence refer to the penalty points that are added to your driving record when you commit a driving offence. In the UK, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) keeps a record of every driver's penalty points. These points are assigned for various driving offences, such as speeding, using a mobile phone while driving, or running a red light.

When you are caught committing a driving offence, you may receive a fixed penalty notice, which usually includes a fine and penalty points. The number of points you receive depends on the severity of the offence. For example, minor speeding offences may result in three points, while more serious violations like dangerous driving can lead to up to 11 points or even a driving ban.

Accumulating points on your licence can have several consequences for UK drivers. Firstly, it can increase your car insurance premiums as insurers consider drivers with penalty points to be higher risk. Additionally, if you accumulate 12 or more points within a three-year period, you may face a driving ban. The length of the ban depends on the number of points accumulated and whether you are a new or experienced driver.

It is crucial to keep track of the points on your licence and ensure you drive responsibly to avoid accumulating them. If you receive points, it is advisable to inform your car insurance provider, as failing to disclose this information can invalidate your insurance policy.