Australian people are living longer and therefore driving longer. In New South Wales, there are certain specific requirements that affect the older driver. There are practical driving assessments and medical assessments for aged drivers.
Aged driving tests for older drivers
- Once you turn 70, if you have a multi-combination licence then you are required to undertake an annual practical driving assessment
- From age 80 you will require a practical driving assessment if you have light-rigid, medium-rigid, heavy-rigid as well as heavy-combination licences
- Once you are 85 you require a practical driving assessment every second year for car and rider licences, unless you elect to switch to a modified licence
Attempts at practical driving assessments are not limited for older drivers, however the assessor will charge you a fee each time. However if you have a Serious Fail, your licence will be cancelled.
Medical tests for older drivers
- From age 75 an annual medical assessment is required regardless of the type of licence held.
With medical tests the Assessment of Fitness to Drive (December 2016) has to be taken into account in accordance with clause 50(1)(c) of the Road Transport (Driver Licensing) Regulation. The Assessment of Fitness to Drive has input from medical professionals and provides guidance on medical conditions such as:
- Neurological, including dementia and seizures
- Sleep disorders
- Substance misuse
- Vision and eye disorders
If you fail your medical then your licence may be varied, suspended or cancelled pursuant to clause 55 of the Road Transport (Driver Licensing) Regulation.
The good news is that if you fail either your practical driving assessment or medical assessment you may have a right of appeal.
You may be able to appeal to the Local Court if your licence is cancelled, suspended or refused for failing your practical driving assessment or your medical assessment under section 266(1)(l) of the Road Transport Act and clause 126(b) of the Road Transport (General) Regulation.
You need to appeal within 28 days pursuant to section 267(2)(a) of the Road Transport Act and RTA v Castrodes and Anor  NSW 9990 at . A medical appeal would involve adducing expert evidence.
The Local Court may set aside or vary the decision, dismiss the appeal or make such order as seems just to the Court in the circumstances in accordance with section 268(2) of the Road Transport Act.
Possible orders as a result of lodging an appeal include a new practical driving assessment or a new medical assessment.
Clause 135(1)(b) of the Road Transport (General) Regulation provides that there is no stay, so you cannot drive in the meantime.
Why not contact me NOW for a FREE CONSULTATION to find out what your options are.
Anthony Stewart, Solicitor
ANTHONY R A STEWART LAW PRACTICE