Alcohol Dependent

Convicted Driver Insurance

JDOX

Member
Firstly a little background in June 2019 was caught with 170mg in a carpark, during an period of great depression where I was drinking a lot. Quite rightly lost my licence (for 40 months) and appealed in August 21 in Magistrates court and had it commuted. I had given up alcohol for better part of 2 years and the magistrates noted that the sentence was in fact punishing my wife and family rather more than I, and that I was no longer a danger to the public. Since the trial I have had a very occasional pints with friends, never more than 2 at a time, once every 3-4 weeks. I was honest on the form to the DVLA and my doctor (who called me to help fill out the form). Nothing in the form to mention previous abstension time. they have since come back to me (14th January - extraordinary) and said that we see that you are drinking again and as you are alcohol dependant or have a history of, we require that you abstain for a year and continuous abstention. Annoying as I would have just passed on those few drinks. I fully stopped again in November as I thought they would need a CDT, but evidently not. I really do not think that I am/have been dependent. I drank a stupid amount when I was very down, but had no withdrawal symptoms stopping. I stopped when it affected my personal life (driving licence/job) with no issues except the usual sadness at missing out on social occcasions etc. bit at a loss as to what to do, they say you can appeal through magistrates court, which I am happy to do, but will they have the power to overturn the DVLA, or will it just be accepted and passed onto the DVLA who will just say no (not until November 22 - 1 year) Plus of course the 5 months it takes to get them to issue a new one...Many thanks in advance for any advice, I live in the country with two small children so a car is entirely necessary.
 

Luna2000

Well-known member
Firstly a little background in June 2019 was caught with 170mg in a carpark, during an period of great depression where I was drinking a lot. Quite rightly lost my licence (for 40 months) and appealed in August 21 in Magistrates court and had it commuted. I had given up alcohol for better part of 2 years and the magistrates noted that the sentence was in fact punishing my wife and family rather more than I, and that I was no longer a danger to the public. Since the trial I have had a very occasional pints with friends, never more than 2 at a time, once every 3-4 weeks. I was honest on the form to the DVLA and my doctor (who called me to help fill out the form). Nothing in the form to mention previous abstension time. they have since come back to me (14th January - extraordinary) and said that we see that you are drinking again and as you are alcohol dependant or have a history of, we require that you abstain for a year and continuous abstention. Annoying as I would have just passed on those few drinks. I fully stopped again in November as I thought they would need a CDT, but evidently not. I really do not think that I am/have been dependent. I drank a stupid amount when I was very down, but had no withdrawal symptoms stopping. I stopped when it affected my personal life (driving licence/job) with no issues except the usual sadness at missing out on social occcasions etc. bit at a loss as to what to do, they say you can appeal through magistrates court, which I am happy to do, but will they have the power to overturn the DVLA, or will it just be accepted and passed onto the DVLA who will just say no (not until November 22 - 1 year) Plus of course the 5 months it takes to get them to issue a new one...Many thanks in advance for any advice, I live in the country with two small children so a car is entirely necessary.
Bit of a mess that considering you even went to court to have your ban reduced.

How did the DVLA assess you as being dependent? Did your GP tell them you were? What have you told your GP in the past about your alcohol consumption? Has your GP ever told you they considered you dependent? Mine didn't tell me and I only found out by accident a couple of months ago that they had classified me as dependent in 2014. Surprisingly though after my first ban in 2017, I was given my licence back with no reference to dependency. I was abstaining totally at that time and had sadi so on the form.

At the end of my 2nd ban and 2 and half years completely sober Currently at an impasse between GP and the DVLA as I am waiting on GP (2 months waiting,) to return forms to DVLA, but I went to GP just before Christmas and had a full blood workup as part of other investigations which showed my LFT's were fine, so the dealy might work in my favour if the GP references that test.
 

price1367

TTC Group
The magistrates can overturn the DVLA decision to not issue you with a licence, but in practice only 1% of applications are successful so really not worth bothering.
As regards to your application to the court to get your licence back early, all they can do is rule that you are eligible to start the DVLA application process, DVLA receive the application and then enquire about your fitness to hold the licence.
 

BigTom

Well-known member
Unfortunately it is what it is. You would have previously been declared alcohol dependent, probably partly because of the high reading and partly from whatever was declared on the questionnaire, GP reports and whatever notes they had on their system. It is widely documented that those considered alcohol dependent will have to jump through hoops, and absolute abstinence is a necessity. Once declared as dependent, you are required to stay abstinent even after the 1 year, they are not looking to see if someone can just do 365 days, they are looking for a lifestyle change - after all, a licence is a privilege, not a given right.

Someone who has previously shown traits of dependence are much more likely to go back to their old ways, and this increases the likelihood of driving whilst under the influence so understandably DVLA keep that type of person under closer scrutiny as they are higher risk.
 

JDOX

Member
Thank you all. I think I understand that. I have asked for all evidence docs from them under Freedom of Information, so will see how they came to their decision (though that will take a month), dont think it was the GP though as I went through the form with her. An expensive 15 pints in better part of 2 1/2 years, and has done enormous damage to my marriage. At least I had my last drink in November, so presumably I can start applying 8 weeks before that date this year. Hope fully DVLA will have speeded up their process by then (some hope). Good luck Luna2000.
 
Thank you all. I think I understand that. I have asked for all evidence docs from them under Freedom of Information, so will see how they came to their decision (though that will take a month), dont think it was the GP though as I went through the form with her. An expensive 15 pints in better part of 2 1/2 years, and has done enormous damage to my marriage. At least I had my last drink in November, so presumably I can start applying 8 weeks before that date this year. Hope fully DVLA will have speeded up their process by then (some hope). Good luck Luna2000.
Dont you have to do LFT's to prove you have been abstinent? Or is it as simple as having another medical after 12 months? I read somewhere on here that its up to us to prove our abstinence by taking regular LFT's during the 12 months.
 

JDOX

Member
They didnt mention anything. Happy to do so, but not sure how I go about it...through GP?
 

Luna2000

Well-known member
They didnt mention anything. Happy to do so, but not sure how I go about it...through GP?
The DVLA will only accept GP and NHS LFT tests, so I would ask your GP to organise at least one of these every 3 months until you apply for your licence back. The DVLA will also likely write to your GP again so they will have that information on file.
 

JDOX

Member
I will speak to my GP about that. I have just found out now from her that she wrote on the form 'yes' to dependency but wrote 'no longer dependent' and mentioned sober 2 years but very rare, occasional drink since. But I see that the 'yes' to dependency negates all other words/deeds as it categorises me in the eyes of the DVLA.
 

Luna2000

Well-known member
I will speak to my GP about that. I have just found out now from her that she wrote on the form 'yes' to dependency but wrote 'no longer dependent' and mentioned sober 2 years but very rare, occasional drink since. But I see that the 'yes' to dependency negates all other words/deeds as it categorises me in the eyes of the DVLA.
How long ago did your GP say you were dependent as the form only goes back 6 years.
 

JDOX

Member
She actually sent me a copy of what she sent the DVLA just now. So in the two questions on 'dependence' and 'persistant alcohol misuse' over the last 6 years she ticked 'yes'; 'are they free from dependence' she ticked 'yes'; and 'how long has it been under control' she wrote 2 years. re current status she wrote 'rarely has an alcoholic drink he says maybe 3 in a month'.
 
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