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THE ROPE IS TIGHTENING ON THE WAR AGAINST SELLING DRIVING TESTS

New Terms and Conditions for using the Online Booking Service (OBS) come into effect from Monday 9th January 2023 at 2pm. Whilst changes are welcomed they are doing nothing to help instructors book tests, rather make it harder for those working independently to find available test slots. These are the key changes:


What you must do

You must make it clear to your pupils if you charge (or have plans to charge) any administrative fees in addition to the usual driving test fee when you book their tests.


If you run a website that offers to book driving test appointments and you do charge administrative fees in addition to the usual driving test fee, you must clearly show any such additional fee on the opening page of any transaction.


What you must not do

You must not:

  • use any automated system or software to interact with this service

  • have more than one account per business

  • use candidate details for reserving tests without their permission

  • misuse ADI numbers – the ADI must have provided their permission to be linked with your business

  • use the service to book tests and sell them on for a profit

  • have a candidate pass rate which is less than the national average if you have a minimum of 75 tests booked per calendar month

The ICO has always covered use of students details, but its clear the DVSA want to wage a war of so called Cancellation Checkers. This does not stop the general public using these systems. However, it would cause a problem is the driving instructor has booked a test on OBS. How will the DVSA take action: Account abuse


What we will do if we believe your account is being misused


Use of your account is monitored. Monitoring will look back over a rolling 2-year period of available data of any bookings made.


Should we believe that your account is being misused, we may (at our discretion) decide to conduct an investigation. If we do so, we will:

  • inform you that we believe your account is being misused and ask you to provide us with reasonable assistance to investigate the matter; and

  • following our investigation, we will contact you to inform you of our findings and our proposed course of action, which may include one or more of the steps set out below.

If, following our investigation, we have reasonable grounds for believing that your account has been misused, we reserve the right to take one or more of the following steps:


First warning

You will receive a warning letter.


Second warning

You will be unable to make any new bookings for 3 months, but will be able to manage bookings (swap and cancel) already on the system


Third warning

Your account will be closed and you will be unable to use the system.


Its a shame the DVSA have taken this route but I realise there are limits to what they can and cannot do with the system. We are being given 4 weeks to adjust our businesses but it will mean it becomes harder to find tests for the short term.

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