Change of driving licence and categories

My husband is about to change his driving licence to a French one. We are concerned about the transferral of categories as he has an old green paper licence and needs to be able to tow a large trailer. Does anyone have any advice please. Thanks

I’ve no idea what categories would be called on an old green licence. However, the category you need to have/keep is BE (sometimes called B+E) if you are towing with a vehicle under 3500kgs gross weight, or C1E if you need to tow with a vehicle up to 7500kgs gross weight. Without the magic +E bit you cannot tow a trailer with a gross weight of more than 7500kgs behind any vehicle.

Useful link here.

As he has such an old licence I’m assuming that your husband can’t be holding any current entitlement ot drive heavy goods i.e. over 7,5 tonnes gross.

Does anyone know if the French Prefecture will accept our licences for renewal and convert the old A categorie on our UK licences into the new BE so we can still tow a large trailer/horse box.

I don’t think they’ll accept it as it isn’t an EU licence so won’t be recognised. I’d get an up-to-date one from the dvla at a friend/relative’s address and then exchange that. You need to have a medical by an authorized médecin (they give you the list) to keep the right to tow trailors and drive up to 7.5 tonnes. Which reminds me, I’m pretty sure mine’s out of date now, it only lasts 5 years!

yep, over a year out of date :frowning:

Phone the DVLA and ask for a Certificate of Entitlement as that will show all the categories and be accepted in exchange for a French licence.

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We changed in 2012 I think… had the EU card and our green paper document as well… the lady said she needed both… :wink:

We were given whatever category was marked on UK Licence… except that she did query if my OH really needed the HGV or whatever (from his younger days)… and he decided NO… as he would only be pulling the car-transporter now…

So easy and friendly, talking things over face to face…

Shortly after we received our Pink French Permis… they started issuing the plastic cards… but no matter… we are OK till the end of our days… :smiley:

nope you need to change with dvla as paper licence has been scrapped

The DVLA will not exchange a UK licence for a French resident. As I wrote above they will issue a Certificate of Entitlement which can be to gain a French Permit de Conduire.

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strange that as last year (2016) I sent in my old paper licence where they sent it to my registered UK address where I now have my eu licence for france.

I spoke with the DVLA on the phone as the french authority was refusing to accept the documents the DVLA provided as I had no photo driving licence.

I gave them my registered UK address and hey presto 2 weeks later I had a photo licence which was then sent to me.

While THE DVLA will not ship a licence to france if you have a valid UK address they will ship it there.

In a word, what is (really) required in practice, when changing address for a UK driver’s license?

Consider, say, the situation where in the UK you are (genuinely) “living at a friend’s house,” or you’ve been spending a lot of time overseas. You may have no bank account statements, or utility bills, or lease.

Does any one have any specific, experiential, facts on this? Thanks!

Assuming you still have your paper counterpart, it’s trivially easy. Just fill in your new address on the form on the back, and post it off to the DVLA along with the photocard. A week or so later, a new photocard and paper counterpart will appear at the new address.

There is no requirement to present proof of address when changing the address on your UK driving license, assuming you have all of it and don’t try to do anything online

(This is especially handy, as it means you can then use your new license to prove your address for other things relating to your move)

This is exactly what the DVLA told me to do (taken from another site)

Fraud. Rather you than me. I could tell it was copied and pasted by the way. Also, paper counterparts no longer exist.
As a French resident you are allowed to keep your UK licence until it expires. At that point it cannot be legally renewed so you need to exchange it for a French one. You may exchange your U.K. licence for a French one at any time.

You, as a French resident are not allowed to have a new UK licence sent to a UK address even if you own that property. The correct procedure in your case would have been to ask for a Certificate of Entitlement and to use that to get a French licence.
Please don’t post illegal advice on public forums, you as an adult have the right to break the law and face the consequences but please don’t suggest that others do the same.

As stated i took that info from somewhere else. I did not claim to be the author of that information.

As stated I SPOKE to the DVLA at length and explained my situation and how at the time was til lin receipt of my medical money from my previous job and had not signed as france being my primary residence at that time and the DVLA themselves told me so long as my address was my legal address I had every right to apply to have my photo licence sent there. I even in the other info section explained what I was living in france on a trial basis and they sent out my licence to my UK address so not sure how that is illegal?? As I was upfront with everything the DVLA which they can either accept or decline to do. They chose to give me my new licence to my then UK address where I pay taxes, phone bill utility bills and even my UK bank accounts sent stuff there. Seems you are never happy David unless your able to put someone down.

Also I had to get a french licence as I was stopped for not stopping long enough at a stop sign and they wanted to add points to my licence so I had no choice in the matter. So no i could not keep it till it expired so your wrong there old chap. Have a great night though.

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How long are you expected to stop at a stop sign?

Aha… clarification at last. @Aquitaine and @anon54681821

Harry now tells us that he was NOT officially resident in France and so was able to apply to DVLA for a new licence. Therefore no fraud involved. (phew)

David is quite correct in suggesting if a French resident uses a UK address for DVLA… this could be fraud.

"To replace your licence you’ll need to:

be a resident of Great Britain (there’s a different service in Northern Ireland)  *************
not be disqualified from driving for any reason
pay ÂŁ20 by MasterCard, Visa, Electron, Maestro or Delta debit or credit card
provide addresses where you’ve lived for the last 3 years

and during the online process itself (if you go that far…) it asks you to confirm that the UK address is where you are living “now” …(not visiting, but living… there is an important difference)
… :blush:



The wheels must actually stop… that is what I have been told… sounds daft but …this whole thing is going topsy turvy… :wink:

Quite an offensive and angry cha aren’t you.

He wrote before that he had been living and running his business in France for two years. Yesterday he wrote that he exchanged his licence with the DVLA earlier this year.
The facts remain, a French resident cannot use a UK address to renew a U.K. Driving Licence.


Getting more than one point on your licence and having to change your licence for a French one is something different altogether.
You cannot make up the rules on residency or driving licences. If you are unsure look at the official French sites, do not rely on urban myths.

No. I am pointing out a legal fact.