For those people suffering from diabetes and you hold a UK driving license are you aware that you need to inform the DVLA (Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency) if you suffer from diabetes. This is also true of people applying for their first license. However, having said that it only applies to people who need to control their diabetes by either tablets or insulin. If your diabetes is controlled by diet alone then there is no need to inform the agency unless your diabetes becomes worse and moves on to taking tablets or insulin (be safe check it out).

On informing the DVLA (Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency) you will receive a form from them asking you for details about your diabetes and to include the name of the doctor treating the problem. Also, on the form will be a place where you must sign authorizing your doctor to disclose to the agency details about your condition. There is usually no difficulty in obtaining a license. However, there would be conditions for some individuals

  1. For a Car or motorbike license If your diabetes is treatable by tablets or non-insulin injections check with your doctor or practice nurse to find out if your treatment means you need to tell DVLA (Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency). If you do need to tell the DVLA, fill in form DIAB1 and send it to the address on the form. You should also tell them if you receive insulin treatment that lasts (or will last) over 3 months, or you had gestational diabetes (diabetes associated with pregnancy) and your insulin treatment lasts over 3 months after the birth, and finally if you get disabling hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) – or a medical professional has told you that you’re at risk of developing it. If your diabetes is treatable by diet alone you do not need to inform them
  2. Bus, coach or lorry license you must tell DVLA if your diabetes is treated by tablets or non-insulin injections. You must fill in form VDIAB1SG if your diabetes is treated with sulphonylurea or glinide tablets. form VDIAB1GEN must be filled in if your diabetes is treated by any other tablets or non-insulin injections. Send the form to DVLA. You will find the address is on the form. If your illness moves to the taking of insulin you need to inform the DVLA, however, If your diabetes is treatable by diet alone you do not need to inform them.
  3. If your diabetes is controlled by the taking of insulin your license will be restricted to a 3 year period instead of the usual 70 years of age, which is the current length of time for most people in the UK. The discrimination applied to insulin based diabetes is because of the risk of the sudden onset of severe hypoglycemia which will result in loss of consciousness if it remains untreated.

Personal Experience

I have a friend with diabetes she developed it some years down the line and she carries with her in her car what she terms as her repair kit. The kit contains a little food as well as glucose tablets, although it has been some years since she felt a hypo coming on she says its there should one come over her while driving.

  1. The rule of thumb is that the only individuals who may have trouble in obtaining a driving license are those people that have a history of severe hypos causing unconsciousness, having said that once the condition of suffering severe hypos is under control then these individuals may apply re-apply with confidence for a license.
  2. Insurance is another headache… Failure to inform your insurance company of your diabetes could make any claim you make invalid.
    Having informed them you will normally receive a form which your doctor will need to fill in and sign.
    These forms can be at best rather long-winded asking questions that sometimes are totally irrelevant. Your doctor is not obliged to fill this form in however, they do need to be filled in and you will probably find you will be charged by your doctor for his/her cooperation.


Those individuals on insulin are not generally allowed to hold a PSV (passenger Service Vehicle) or an LGV (Large Goods Vehicle) License. The term was changed from HGV (Heavy Goods License)to LGV as not all countries in Europe had a word that meant heavy

I am not too sure about this next point…… I do believe that if you develop type 1 diabetes (insulin Dependant) you would not be allowed to keep your PSV or LGV license.

If you make your living dependant on your driving license, it would be worth checking this point. If one day you fell foul of the law and have not reported your condition to the relevant body in this instant, the DVLA (Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency). You may end up losing your license.

Not to mention you will invalidate your insurance if you have failed to also inform them about your health condition.

Did You Know?

  • Your vehicle tax and a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) cannot be passed on even if you do not exchange your vehicle for money. An exampale would be to a family member.
  • When you buy a vehicle you must tax it before you use it, or tell the Driver & Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). If it’s off the road then you need to inform the DVLA by making a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN).
  • If the vehicle is not taxed and has no Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN), it may be clamped and you will become liable to pay the clamping fine.
  • If you are the registered keeper of a vehicle it is your responsibility to tell the Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) that you have sold the vehicle. Use a (V5C registration certificate) If there is any tax left on the vehicle when you sell it you will automatically get a refund for any full calendar month(s) of tax left on the vehicle when it is sold, usually within 4 to 6 weeks. Any Direct Debit will be canceled at the same time.