From 19th January 2013 the Road Safety Authority (RSA) will have responsibility for driving licences in Ireland. As part of this new system, the current paper driving licence and learner permits will begin to be replaced by credit card sized plastic licences in an EU wide change to upgrade all driving licences.
Motor Tax Offices will still accept and process all applications, however the new plastic card licence will be produced by a specialist company. Licences cannot be handed out over the counter under any circumstances.
Who does the change apply to from 19th January 2013
* Those who have passed their driving test and are applying for their first driving licence
* Those who are renewing their learner permit/driving licence
* Those who are exchanging a foreign driving licence for an Irish driving licence.
You can only get a new licence when your licence is due for renewal. All other licences issued before that date will be in paper format but will still be valid until their expiry date.
There are a number of changes regarding licence categories coming in at the same time as the introduction of the new plastic card licence. Further information is available from www.rsa.ie
Your first licence when you begin to learn to drive will be the Learner Permit. A learner permit is issued to enable a person to learn to drive and to apply for a driving test.
A person who takes out a first motorcycle learner permit on or after 6th December 2010 must successfully complete a course of initial basic training.
A person who takes out a first car learner permit on or after 4th April 2011 must successfully complete a course of initial basic training.
Please note that the applications for driving licences can be downloaded from www.rsa.ie and www.ndls.ie They are also available from this office (please phone 057 9346831).