If I am disqualified from driving in the UK, will I be able to drive abroad?

If you are disqualified from driving by a court in the UK, this will not affect your right to drive elsewhere in the world, unless the domestic law in the country you are in provides for disqualifications from foreign countries to be recognised in their own.

The UK has an agreement in place with the Republic of Ireland where disqualifications imposed in either state will have effect in the other. In other words, if you are disqualified in the UK, this disqualification will also have effect in Ireland. This is the only agreement the UK has with another country in respect of the mutual recognition of a driving disqualification.

However, in order to drive abroad most countries will insist on you having a valid driving licence. In the absence of a valid driving licence you would be unable to hire a car or drive a car hired by someone else. You would also struggle to obtain insurance.

If you decide to drive abroad whilst you are disqualified in this country, although you will not be committing the offence of driving whilst disqualified, you could be committing the offence of driving without a valid licence. The punishment for this offence will vary from country to country but in most places the punishment is a fine.

Need advice on a legal issue related to driving? Contact the specialist solicitors at JMW on 0800 804 8159, or read more about our driving offence services here.

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