• Wednesday, 08 January 2020

Driving Renewal Process for Senior Citizens in Ontario

Driving is a privilege but it also represents freedom for many senior citizens. In Ontario, the fitness of drivers to manage and maintain safety is taken very seriously. While having the ability to drive is helpful in keeping seniors active and allowing them to maintain their independence, it’s also important to make sure that seniors can safely operate vehicles.

As people age, they often lose vision and find that physical and mental limitations can become a part of their daily life. Because these issues can creep up rather quickly, Ontario has made specific laws to govern driver’s license renewal for those of advanced age.

If you’ve received a letter from the Ministry of Transportation (MOT) indicating that you need to complete the senior driver’s license renewal process in order to obtain a new license, you might be confused or nervous about what this entails. The steps to renew and maintain your driver’s license after the age of 80 are very specific. This article includes all of the information you need to renew your license in a safe and timely manner.

Ontario’s Senior Driver’s License

Drivers who have reached the age of 80 in Ontario need to complete additional steps in order to renew their driver’s license. First, you’ll receive a letter from the MOT. This letter will typically arrive about three months or 90 days before your driver’s license expires and it will explain the exact steps you must take in order to renew your license.

It’s important that you follow these steps carefully. Seniors are expected to take additional written and driving tests in order to renew their license. If your license is not renewed, it will mean finding alternate transportation. Insurance companies will not cover automobiles for unlicensed drivers and it is against the law for you to operate a vehicle without a valid license.

After age 80, you will need to take the exam every two years in order to renew your license. The additional testing process is designed to make sure that drivers are not experiencing any mental or memory-related issues that can compromise safety. Other issues they are particularly concerned about include diminished vision and physical impairments which can alter reaction times.

Rules Before an Ontario Seniors Driving Test

The rules to follow to complete your Ontario Seniors driving test are relatively straightforward. But each of the steps must be completed for the MOP to allow you to renew your license. If you do not complete all of the steps or are told that you have not passed all of the tests, your current license will not be revoked. However, you will be unable to renew your license when it expires unless all of the steps are fulfilled.

Once you receive your letter from MOP, you’ll need to call to make an appointment to take your tests. Plan for the process to take at least 90 minutes.

Steps to Renew Senior Driver’s License

There are a number of steps involved in renewing your senior license. First, you’ll be notified through a letter and will need to call to schedule an appointment for renewal. At your renewal appointment, there will be a number of tests and screenings that you’ll need to complete. Often these appointments are conducted in a group. Your personal driving record will also be evaluated.

Senior Driving License Renewal Process

The process for license renewal may be individualized. For instance, you may be asked to complete a road test behind the wheel, or they may decide that this is not necessary. You should be prepared to take a road test, either way.

You will need to complete a vision test as well as a written test on the rules of the road. Seniors also need to complete a Group Evaluation Session which is 45 minutes long and is mandatory. You’ll also need to complete tests that were created to detect cognitive difficulties.

Requirements to Fulfill

The basic requirements you’ll need to complete in order to renew your senior driver’s license include:

  • Vision Test. This is your standard vision test and the administrator will allow you to wear any prescription glasses that you use normally.
  • Cognitive Test. These tests are straightforward and simple but are designed to detect any cognitive issues you may be experiencing which can compromise driving safety.
  • GES. This 45-minute session is a group lesson that goes over basic rules of the road and updates.
  • Written Test. This written test was created to assess how well you understand the rules of the road and driving safety, including any updates and changes.
  • Review of Driving Record.

You may also be asked to take a road test with an instructor. Once you’ve passed all of your tests, you’ll be given your test results to take to renew your license at the ServiceOntario Centre.

Ontario Driving Renewal Process for Senior Citizens FAQ

  1. At what age do seniors have to take a driving test in Ontario? At the age of 80, you will need to complete the senior citizen renewal process in order to secure a valid license. After this age, you will need to renew your license every 2 years.
  2. Can I renew my Ontario Driver’s License online? Most drivers can renew their license online every five years. However, seniors over the age of 80 need to come in for a series of tests and complete a 45-minute Group Education Session, which they must attend to renew their license.

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