Epilepsy and driving
In March 2013 the driving regulations for people with epilepsy were updated. The rules do not affect Northern Ireland until later on in 2013.
Prior to these changes, most people with epilepsy had to be seizure free for one year before they were able to apply/reapply for a driving licence.
The changes to the regulations are as follows:
For Group 1 licences which include driving cars and motorcycles:
- before the regulations were changed anyone having seizures during sleep only were able to obtain a licence after three years. These people will now be considered for a driving licence after one year
- prior to these amendments those people who had focal seizures that did not affect consciousness or impede their ability to drive, for example: lip smacking, mouth movements, numbness, tingling sensations, etc. were unable to keep their driving licence unless they were seizure free for one year. Under the new regulations they can now apply for a licence as long as they are not experiencing any other type of seizure, one year after experiencing their first focal seizure
- prior to March 2013, those people with epilepsy who experienced seizures when their medication regime was changed were unable to drive for a year. Under the new regulations a person can apply for a licence after a six month period of seizure freedom if they have returned to the regime that successfully controlled their seizures
For details of Group 2 entitlement which includes driving lorries, buses, etc visit: www.dft.gov.uk/dvla//medical/aag.aspx