Running a motorcycle training school

5. Issuing and managing CBT certificates (DL196s)

Issuing certificates, ordering more, making mistakes on certificates, reporting lost or stolen certificates, and issuing replacement certificates.

Issue certificates

The trainee must be given a certificate of completion (DL196) when they complete a compulsory basic training (CBT) course successfully. The certificate:

  • validates the provisional entitlement on their licence
  • lets them ride on-road under normal learner conditions

You should:

  • monitor your own stock levels
  • reorder certificates in enough time (you should allow 5 working days from placing your order to it being sent)

Not having enough certificates

You must not provide CBT courses if you don’t have enough DL196 certificates to give to successful trainees.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) can withdraw your approved training body’s (ATB’s) authority if you don’t give a DL196 certificate to trainees when they complete the course successfully.

You can only buy DL196 certificates from DVSA. You’re not allowed to use certificates bought by another ATB.

Order DL196 certificates

You can buy books of 25 DL196 certificates from DVSA. Each book costs £200.

You can order CBT certificates online or by phone.

Books of DL196s are sent with a copy of the original order form. When you get the books, you should make sure that the serial numbers on the books match the numbers on the order form.

DL196 return form

Each book of DL196 certificates has a DL196 return form. You should fill this in and send it to DVSA when all 25 certificates have been issued.

Fill in DL196 certificates

The DL196 certificate should be filled in and signed by the instructor who conducted the on-road training (element E).

The name and address of your ATB should be included on the certificate.

You should make sure that the correct site code is entered on to each DL196 certificate issued.

It isn’t usually necessary to enter information into the category restriction box. However, this may be appropriate when a CBT course is done on:

  • a motorcycle and sidecar combination
  • a moped with more than 2 wheels

In these cases, a description of the vehicle should be written in the category restriction box.

Read definitions of mopeds and different motorcycles

Spoiled DL196 certificates

The DL196 certificate is a legal document. You can amend or alter it if you make a simple error filling it in if:

  • all the information is legible
  • any incorrect entry is crossed out, signed and the correct details clearly written above

You must not use correction fluid.

You can only make amendments at the time the certificate is filled in. This makes sure that all 3 copies have the amendment on it.

DVSA examiners can refuse to carry out a test if they have doubts about an amended DL196 form.

You should give a replacement certificate if errors are discovered at a later date.

Security of DL196 certificates

DL196 certificates are printed in triplicate. Give the top copy to the candidate when they’ve successfully completed the course.

Keep the other 2 copies for 2 years. After that, they should be destroyed or securely disposed of.

All current and old DL196 certificates held by your ATB must be made available to DVSA on request.

Lost or stolen certificate

You’re responsible for keeping DL196 certificates safe. You must tell the police straight away if any certificates are lost or stolen.

You should also report it to DVSA in writing or by email. You’ll need to give:

  • full details of the circumstances
  • certificate numbers


CBT Team
Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency
The Axis Building
112 Upper Parliament Street

You must tell DVSA straight away if any certificates reported lost or stolen are recovered or found. If you don’t, it can lead to a candidate’s test being cancelled because the DL196 certificate is still recorded as stolen.

Expiry of DL196 certificates

A DL196 certificate is valid for 2 years from the date it’s issued, except when the certificate validates full moped rights on a full car licence. In this case, the certificate is valid for the life of the driving licence.

Duplicate DL196 certificates

You must give a duplicate of the original DL196 certificate to a trainee if the original is lost or stolen. You can charge them up to £20 for this.

The duplicate should fully mirror the information and details (including the completion date) entered on the original certificate.

The instructor issuing the replacement certificate should write on the top of the duplicate: ‘DUPLICATE OF CERT NO. XXXXXXX’.

If the original instructor is not available

If the instructor who issued the original certificate isn’t available to sign the duplicate, write their name on the duplicate. This can then be signed by the instructor issuing the certificate.

Posting replacements

You can post a duplicate certificate if the trainee is unable to collect it. It must include an instruction for it to be signed when they get it. If this happens, it’s acceptable that the 2 copies of the duplicate that you hold don’t have a candidate’s signature.

If the ATB has closed down

If the ATB who issued the original certificate is no longer operating, DVSA can issue a duplicate certificate to a trainee if the certificate books were returned to them when the ATB closed.