NewsExchange driver's license: First deadline expires - who should...

Exchange driver's license: First deadline expires – who should act now

Created: 07/20/2022, 09:20 am

The time has come, the first driver’s licenses have to be exchanged for the new EU driver’s licenses. But not everyone has the same deadline.

Frankfurt – According to the Federal Ministry of Transport, driving licenses are to be given a uniform model within the EU in the future, which in particular meets current requirements for protection against counterfeiting. In addition, all driver’s licenses are to be recorded in a database in order to avoid misuse of the documents.

The guidelines passed in the EU Parliament stipulate that all driving licenses issued before January 19, 2013 should be exchanged for the new EU driving licenses by January 19, 2033. According to the ADAC, a total of around 43 million driver’s licenses – including around 15 million paper driver’s licenses and around 28 million credit card driver’s licenses – will have to be exchanged in the coming years.

Why is there a driver’s license exchange at all?

  • The first deadline for those born between 1953 and 1958 is July 19, 2022.
  • All driving licenses issued before January 19, 2013 must be exchanged for the new EU driving licences.
  • The newly issued EU driving license is valid for 15 years and must then be renewed.

Driver’s license exchange: When does who have to exchange their driver’s license?

In order to avoid overloading the authorities and long waiting times, staggered deadlines apply to the driver’s license exchange. Depending on the year of birth of the holder or the year in which the driving license was issued, the obligation to exchange takes effect on a specific date. A voluntary early exchange of the driver’s license document is possible at any time, i.e. even before the date specified in the exchange table.

For driving licenses that were issued up to December 31, 1998 , the year of birth of the holder is decisive for the deadline classification:

year of birth of the holder deadline
before 1953 Exchange until January 19, 2033
1953 to 1958 Exchange until July 19, 2022
1959 to 1964 Exchange until January 19, 2023
1965 to 1970 Exchange until January 19, 2024
1971 or later Exchange until January 19, 2025
Source: Federal Government.de

For those born between 1953 and 1958, the original deadline was January 19, 2022. In practice, however, many drivers did not get an appointment with the understaffed authorities under Corona conditions. They have therefore extended the deadline to July 19, 2022.

Drei Generationen des Führerscheins: Der rosafarbene „Lappen“ hat ab dem 19. Januar 2033 endgültig ausgedient, ab dem 19. Januar diesen Jahres wird der einheitliche EU-Führerschein im Kreditkartenformat ausgestellt.  
Foto: dpa
Three generations of the driver’s license: The pink “rag” has finally had its day on January 19, 2033. In the meantime, only the standard EU driver’s license is issued in credit card format. (symbol image) © dpa

For driving licenses issued after January 1, 1999 , however, the year of issue of the driving license is relevant:

Year of issue of the driver’s license deadline
1999 to 2001 Exchange until January 19, 2026
2002 to 2004 Exchange until January 19, 2027
2005 to 2007 Exchange until January 19, 2028
2008 Exchange until January 19, 2029
2009 Exchange until January 19, 2030
2010 Exchange until January 19, 2031
2011 Exchange until January 19, 2032
2012 to January 18, 2013 Exchange until January 19, 2033
Source: Federal Government.de

According to the Federal Ministry of Transport, the only exception to this classification are drivers who were born before 1953 . You only have to exchange the driver’s license until January 19, 2033, regardless of the year in which the driver’s license was issued. So if Ms. Mustermann was born in 1952 (or before) but only received her driver’s license in 2003, the exchange deadline is January 19, 2033.

Where does the driver’s license exchange take place?

The driving license authority of the current place of residence is responsible for exchanging the driving license document. The Federal Government recommends that you find out about the corona-related changes to the office hours at an early stage and that you arrange the appointments in advance.

If the old paper driver’s license was not issued by the authority of the current place of residence, a so-called index card copy from the originally issuing authority is required, according to the federal government. This can be applied for by post, by telephone or online and sent to the current driving license office.*

Bei Verlust muss der Fahrzeugschein bei der Zulassungsstelle schnellstmöglich neu beantragt werden.
Drivers born between 1953 and 1958 must get rid of their old paper driving licences. © Thomas Imo/Imago

Driving license exchange: what is required for this?

The following documents must be presented for the driver’s license exchange:

  • a valid identity card or passport
  • a biometric passport photo
  • the current driver’s license
  • a fee of around 25 euros
  • if applicable, a copy of the index card from the originally issuing authority (* see above)

Can you keep the old driver’s license after the exchange?

For many driver’s license holders, the old driver’s license is linked to valuable memories. Not everyone is happy to give it away. According to the federal government, the old driver’s license can be kept by the holder – but it will be canceled beforehand. That is, he is punched. This shows that it is no longer valid.

Driving license exchange: what happens if the deadline is exceeded?

According to information from the ADAC, anyone who misses the intended exchange period and continues to drive with their old car or motorcycle driver’s license risks a fine of 10 euros. You don’t commit a crime – it’s different with truck and bus driver’s licenses. According to the ADAC, car and motorcyclists could also have problems abroad if they continue to drive with their old driver’s license after the exchange period has expired. (n / A)

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