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Endorsements and penalty points

If you’re convicted of a motoring offence, the courts can fine you and endorse your driving licence with penalty points. Endorsements must stay on your driving licence for four or 11 years, depending on the offence.

Fixed Penalty Office

If your licence has been taken from you by the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) it is passed to the Fixed Penalty Office (FPO), who update the licence and return it with penalty points added. The process can take up to 12 weeks. The number to contact FPO is:

  • phone: 028 9072 8318

If you have attended court because of a motoring offence, your licence is initially sent to the Customer Services Centre of the Northern Ireland Courts Service and held for 15 days pending appeal. The number to contact them is:

  • phone: 028 9072 8318

After this period the licence is forwarded on to Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA) Coleraine to have the endorsements generated on the licence. The number to contact DVA is:

  • phone: 0845 402 4000

Endorsements codes and penalty points

Each endorsement has a unique offence code and is allocated 'penalty points' on a scale from one to 11, depending on the severity of the offence. The endorsement (and penalty points) is updated on your driver record and written on your paper driving licence or the counterpart document of your photocard driving licence.

You can find out more information on some of the main offences and associated penalties outlined in the table at the link below:

How long endorsements stay on your driving licence

An endorsement must stay on your driving licence for the following periods of time:

Eleven years from date of conviction if the offence is:

  • drinking or drugs and driving shown on the licence as 50 08 123, 50 08 124, and 50 08 125
  • causing death by careless driving while under the influence of drink or drugs - shown on the licence as 50 08 204 and 50 08 208
  • causing death by careless driving, then failing to provide a specimen for analysis - shown on the licence as 50 08 212

Example: date of conviction is 3 December 2012 - the endorsement must stay on the licence until 2 December 2023.

Four years from the date of conviction if the offence is for:

  • dangerous driving - shown on the licence as 50 08 201
  • offences resulting in disqualification
  • disqualified from holding a full driving licence until a driving test has been passed

Example: date of conviction is 28 May 2013 - the endorsement must stay on the licence until 27 May 2017.

Four years from the date of offence in all other cases.

Example: date of offence 10 June 2013 - the endorsement must stay on the licence until 9 June 2017.

'Totting-up' penalty points

If you build up 12 or more penalty points within a period of three years, you’ll be liable to be disqualified under the 'totting-up' system. This is shown on your licence as TOT UP. Information on your driving entitlement and endorsements are sent to the courts and police on request.

New Drivers Order

Your driving licence is automatically revoked (withdrawn) if you build up six or more penalty points within two years of passing your first driving test.

Producing your driving licence for endorsement

You’ll need to produce your driving licence to the police, Fixed Penalty Office (FPO) or when you appear at court. If your driving licence is lost, you can get a duplicate.

If your driving licence is not returned after being endorsed, you’ll need to contact the FPO on:

  • phone: 028 9072 8318

or DVA enquiries on:

  • phone: 0845 402 4000

Removing expired endorsements from your driving licence

You can apply to remove expired endorsements by obtaining a replacement licence. Expired endorsements are automatically removed when you apply to renew or update your licence for other reasons.

Check endorsement details

The paper counterpart of your driving licence will show driving offences and other relevant information.

If you’ve lost your driving licence and need to check your endorsement details you can contact DVA customer services, Monday to Friday from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm on:

  • phone: 0845 402 4000

If incorrect endorsement details are shown on your driving licence, contact the convicting court for advice.

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