how do I get a provisional driving licence

I'm new here, can anyone please help with this: my daughter, Emily, has FA. She's 17 in April and really wants to learn to drive. Her FA is mild and the licence application states she has to declare it. How do we go about getting the licence, do we need a letter from GP or specialist. I want to get this sorted with minimum fuss, without jumping through the usual 1,000 hoops as she isn't accepting the diagnosis at all well. I want to get the provisional licence sorted ASAP. Many thanks, Emily's mum x

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  • Hi, I also have FA (I'm 32)-had to disclose FA to the DVLA so am on a 3 year license (subject to medical review) I think you just do it as normal but then will need to disclose it when it asks about medical conditions! Check out the DVLA website! Hope that helps!xx

  • Hi, many thanks for the information. I think we're going to have to fill in the DVLA medical questionnaire & see what happens. I hope the driving mobility organisation mentioned by D1DG3 can advise. I also hope it's all more straight forward than I think it's going to be!! :)

  • Hi, all you need to know here. drivingmobility.org.uk or phone 0800 559 3636 for advice. I have FA been driving with adaptions for 8yrs now but was driving before problems started mainly kept missing pedals a bit too often. Notified DVLA the out come was an assessment to see adaptions needed to carry on driving but by the forms I filled in it was known which ones. A few tests were done eye sight, hearing, strength in arms, braking speeds and questions on Highway Code and signs. Then practical driving in a Nissan Cherry with adaptions a push/pull leaver (brake/acceleration) little switch at top for indicators and a ball knob on stearing wheel for stearing. Half an hour driving around getting used to them. I passed, then getting a car with motability. About 3mths after back safely driving. I wish your daughter all the best with this exciting venture.

  • Hi, thanks so much for all the information, it's really helpful. I'll contact the organisation, which I've not come across at all. It's also really good to hear of your positive experience in continuing to drive.

    This is all really new to us and it's taking us quite some time to get our heads around everything and the implciations. Your practical advice is very much appreciated. Thank you again :)

  • Hi Emilys-mum, my name's Olly and I'm writing a piece for Ataxia UK' s magazine. I was wondering if you'd be willing to answer a few questions around your daughter's interest in learning to drive, and how well you've been able to move forward with this? My email is oroberton@ataxia.org.uk if you'd like to get in touch, many thanks!

  • You are very welcome and I hope Emily does well 😋

  • Until 3 years ago I was a Driving Instructor, but as my Ataxia affects my speech I have had to retire, I worked as an Instructor and ran my own firm for 34 years, so it wasn't too hard. My advice would be to declare on your application for a licence, and as far as getting an Instructor goes, find a one, or two, man firm that has been recommended by her friends, failing that then perhaps find one with the sort of car that either she will get, or you already have for her to practice in.

    Good Luck

  • Many thanks for your advice. We have now got the provisional licence (finally!) - we did declare the FA and had to go down the route of medical questionnaire, consultants report & she has a 3 year review licence. Most driving instructors are fully booked, but yesterday we managed to get in with one recommended by others who've recently passed and is as you say an experienced 1 man band, who sounds lovely! I take it your Ataxia has been later onset? thanks again for getting in touch.

  • Good luck to your daughter. Whilst I was instructing I taught all sorts of different disabilities from M.S. to Thalidomide,and also blind . in one eye and totally deaf, so Emily should be easy.My Ataxia is late onset and I am just ignoring it.

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