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Monday, 13 April 2020

Expired Driving Permits during Coronavirus Lockdown


Q:
I’d like to know what the law is on driving with an expired permit/license… because I need to drive during this COVID-19 pandemic, but I cannot renew due to the Licensing Authority being closed.
A:
42. (1) Save as in this section provided, no person shall drive a motor vehicle on a road unless he is the holder of a valid driving permit for a motor vehicle of that class, and no person shall employ any person to drive a motor vehicle on a road unless the person so employed is the holder of a valid driving permit for a motor vehicle of that class, and if any person acts in contravention of this provision, he shall be liable to a fine of seven hundred and fifty dollars ($750) or imprisonment for six (6) months...

However, on 20th March 2020, the government passed the Miscellaneous Provisions [2019-Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)] Act 2020 to amend certain pieces of legislation to introduce special provisions during the novel coronavirus lockdown in Trinidad and Tobago; one such amendment being to the Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic 1934, as amended on the validity of expired driving permits (in law, this is referred to as a moratorium):
61B. (1) Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary contained in this Act, any driving permit, taxi driver licence, badge, certificate or other document issued by the Licensing Authority which expired prior to or during the period 27th March, 2020 to 31st July, 2020 shall be deemed to be valid until 31st August, 2020.

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