Learning to Drive - Newly diagnosed YOPD

Hi everyone,

I’ve been recently diagnosed with young onset parkinsons disease. Before this, I was aiming to start my driving lessons in september 2024. However, I don’t seem to be able to find any information about learning to drive with parkinsons. I’ve seen a lot of information for people who already drive but I am unsure if the process is different for beginning to learn.

Does anyone have any experience with this or know of any good websites with relevant information etc?

Thanks in advance

Good afternoon Jezkyle … Welcome to the forum. So sorry to hear of your Parkinson’s diagnosis & at such a young age. The first bit of advice / information is that by law you have to advise the DVLA that you have Parkinson’s disease. This has to be your first step.

I am 70 years old & had to tell the DVLA & forward letters from my medical people that I was indeed fit enough to drive. I am fit to drive & have been given a medical driving licence & have to reapply when I am 73.

If I were you I would contact the DVLA & inform them you are taking driving lessons & ask if they have information for you. There is a bit of a Chicken & Egg situation here.

So having informed the DVLA who I assume grant you a Provisional Driving Licence you will need to find a driving instructor. Of course you need to tell them of your Parkinson’s diagnosis.

You will need to ask your medical team if you are fit to drive & they will in time be contacted by the DVLA.

I would contact the DVLA ASAP as it will take a lot of time.

Best of luck.

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I have just read Steve2’s reply which I would generally agree with and I think pretty much comes to the same conclusion as me albeit wikth a different writing style. :grinning: Neither of us seem to think it should prevent you from learning to drive but you may have to be prepared to perhaps take the scenic route to get there. His point about finding an instructor is very important - you need to find someone who understands the condiition and I found this which may be a good starting point. https://www.disabilitydrivinginstructors.com/
This is wnat I wrote in reply to your post
Hello Jezkyle

That is a very interesting point you raise and I don’t have an official answer for you but I don’t see why it should be vastly different to someone with Parkinson’s continuing to drive. Generally your consultant will ‘decide’ if you are fit to drive (or in your case learn to drive) and you are required to inform the DVLA of your diagnosis but they most usually go with the view of the consultant and most get a three year licence.

It is usually recommended that you also inform your insurance company if this is appropriate.

You should note that a three year licence doesn’t mean you are safe to drive for three years - you would still be responsible for deciding whether you are fit to drive whenever you were going to get into your car.

It may be worth looking into having an independent driving assessment or at least talking to someone at a driving assessment centre and get their view and any suggestions they may have to determine how any symptoms you currently have may have implications for your learning to drive.

I think the best thing you can do just now is to find out what your consultant thinks and take it from there.

I repeat this is not offcially how it works, I don’t know the reality, but it does seem logical to me.

Good luck and dp let us know how you get on.


Hello Tot … “different writing style” … LOL.

The VERY IMPORTANT thing to do Jezkyle is to speak to the DVLA about your Parkinson’s diagnosis as your circumstances are unusual. ie nearly all people that get a Parkinson’s diagnosis already have a driving licence as they are mostly ancient like me & Tot.

I’m pretty sure that you won’t be able to have a driving lesson until you get a provisional driving licence.

Knowing the DVLA I expect this to take months. So do it straight away.

Best of luck

Now in that I would agree with Steve2. I suspect the DVLA won’t have a ready answer for you as it is an unusual (I think) circumstance - and they are not known for the speed of their response at the best of times.
And we’re not ancient Steve2, vintage maybe, in our prime perhaps but ancient? Definitely not :grinning: :grinning:

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