Independent report

Driven to despair

This report highlights major failings in the way DVLA makes decisions on whether people with certain medical conditions are safe to drive.


Driven to despair How drivers have been let down by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency


We have upheld investigations into eight separate complaints where people with complex medical conditions were unfairly prevented from driving, sometimes for several years, as a result of flawed decisions, significant delays, poor communication and complaint handling.

We have seen the significant impact that DVLA’s actions have had on people’s lives: causing them to lose their jobs, be cut off from friends and family, and suffer significant stress and frustration. DVLA has accepted our findings and recommendations for all eight cases and in six of them has granted the licence applied for, thereby overturning its own original decision.

Published 19 October 2016