The DfT has revealed the abolition of the paper driving licence will be delayed until 8 June this year. reported last year that plans to do away with the paper part of the driving licence from January had been put on hold, after opposition from trade associations concerned it would actually increase the burden on hauliers.

Trade bodies, including the FTA and vehicle hire body the BVRLA, raised operational concerns about the original proposal. This would have forced anyone seeking to check a driver’s counterpart information to rely on that driver printing it out from an online database, before verifying it themselves by entering a unique code on the printout into a website, along with the driver’s licence number, within 48 hours.

FTA head of policy for driver licensing Ian Gallagher told at the time that the proposed system would have created a great deal of unnecessary work for firms seeking to check the licences of hundreds or thousands of drivers three or more times a year, as many do.

Following the announcement of the start date, Karen Dee, FTA director of policy, said: “We had voiced concerns that the new date would be rushed and would not allow any significant re-development of the systems that businesses were expected to use to carry out critical safety checks on their drivers.

“Today’s announcement of 8 June 2015 demonstrates that ministers have listened to industry’s concerns, and we look forward to working with DVLA to develop a system which is fit for purpose."