Road Traffic Act 1961

Certificates of competency.

33

33. (1) In this section “ the issuing authority” means the person who, in the case in question and in accordance with regulations made by the Minister, is the issuing authority for the purposes of this section.

(2) A person, other than a person to whom section 32 of this Act applies, may apply to the issuing authority for a certificate of competency in the following cases:

( a) where he is disqualified for holding a driving licence until he produces a certificate of competency,

( b) where under the regulations under this Act an application by him for a driving licence is required to be accompanied by a certificate of competency.

(3) Where an application is duly made under this section and the appropriate fee is paid, the issuing authority shall test or cause to be tested—

( a) the competency of the applicant to drive the class or classes of mechanically propelled vehicle to which the application relates, and

( b) the knowledge of the applicant of the Rules of the Road, the test, so far as it is a test of competency to drive, being carried out in such vehicles (to be provided by the applicant) as the person carrying out the test considers necessary.

F69 [ (3B) An issuing authority shall not carry out nor cause to be carried out a test for a certificate of competency unless the mechanically propelled vehicle in which the test is to be carried out displays on its front windscreen

( a ) a licence taken out under section 1 of the Finance (Excise Duties) (Vehicles) Act 1952 , F70 [ and ]

( b ) F71 [ subject to subsection (3BB) , where the vehicle ] is a vehicle to which section 18 applies, a test certificate,

for the time being in force, in respect of the vehicle.

F72 [ (3BB) Where an EU roadworthiness certificate does not have a detachable disc, the proof of test issued by the Member State competent authority or the Member State testing centre concerned for the purposes of Article 10 of the Roadworthiness Directive shall be presented to the issuing authority for the purposes of subsection (3B) . ]

(3C) If a licence or test certificate referred to in subsection (3B) is not displayed in accordance with that subsection, the application for a certificate of competency is refused and any fee paid in respect of the application is forfeited. ]

(4) On completion of a test under subsection (3) of this section, the issuing authority shall either—

( a) refuse the application, or

( b) F73 [ where a person has not been issued with a theory test certificate (within the meaning of European Communities (Driving Theoretical Tests) Regulations 2003 (S.I. No. 52 of 2003)) in respect of the category of vehicle in respect of which the person applied for a certificate of competency ] subject to being satisfied that the applicant has a satisfactory knowledge of the Rules of the Road, issue a certificate (in this Act referred to as a certificate of competency) certifying—

(i) in case the application is for a certificate of competency to drive any mechanically propelled vehicle whatsoever and the issuing authority is satisfied that the applicant is competent to drive any mechanically propelled vehicle whatsoever—that the applicant is competent to drive any mechanically propelled vehicle whatsoever, or

(ii) in any other case—that the applicant is competent to drive any specified class or classes of mechanically propelled vehicle, being a class or classes in respect of which a certificate of competency was applied for and which the issuing authority is satisfied that the applicant is competent to drive,

but, where the issuing authority so thinks proper, it may defer a decision under this subsection pending production by the applicant of a certificate of fitness.

(5) ( a) A person aggrieved by the deferring of a decision under subsection (4) of this section may appeal to a Justice of the District Court having jurisdiction in the place in which such person ordinarily resides, and the Justice may either refuse the appeal or direct that the application shall be dealt with without requiring a certificate of fitness.

( b) A decision under this subsection of a Justice of the District Court shall be final and not appealable.

(6) ( a) A person aggrieved by a decision under subsection (4) of this section may appeal to a Justice of the District Court having jurisdiction in the place in which such person ordinarily resides, and the Justice may either refuse the appeal or, if satisfied that the test was not properly conducted, direct that the applicant shall be given a further test.

( b) A decision under this subsection of a Justice of the District Court shall be final and not appealable.

(7) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, it shall be lawful for a person who does not hold a driving licence, or is disqualified for holding a driving licence, to drive a mechanically propelled vehicle during a test under this section, and the driving shall not be a contravention of any provision of this Act merely by reason of his not being the holder of a driving licence.

Annotations

Amendments:

F69

Inserted (1.06.2011) by Road Traffic Act 2010 (25/2010), s. 92, S.I. No. 255 of 2011.

F70

Substituted (12.01.2013) by Road Safety Authority (Commercial Vehicle Roadworthiness) Act 2012 (16/2012), s. 50(g), S.I. No. 5 of 2013.

F71

Substituted (27.11.2020) by European Union (National Car Test - EU Roadworthiness Certificates) Regulations 2020 (S.I. No. 554 of 2020), reg. 2(c)(i).

F72

Inserted (27.11.2020) by European Union (National Car Test - EU Roadworthiness Certificates) Regulations 2020 (S.I. No. 554 of 2020), reg. 2(c)(ii).

F73

Inserted (21.07.2006) by Road Traffic Act 2006 (23/2006), s. 9, S.I. No. 384 of 2006.

F74

Inserted by Road Traffic Act 2014 (3/2014), s. 6(a), not commenced as of date of revision.

F75

Inserted by Road Traffic Act 1968 (25/1968), s. 21, not commenced as of date of revision.

Modifications (not altering text):

C31

Prospective affecting provision: subss. (3D) and (3E) inserted by Road Traffic Act 2014 (3/2014), s. 6(a), not commenced as of date of revision.

F74 [ (3D) An issuing authority shall not carry out nor cause to be carried out a test for a certificate of competency unless the person to be tested, when presenting for the test, produces a record of having completed any minimum period of driving experience prescribed under section 42(3) (h).

(3E) If a record referred to in subsection (3D) is not produced in accordance with that subsection, the application for a certificate of competency is refused and any fee paid in respect of the application is forfeited. ]

C32

Prospective affecting provision: subs. (3A) inserted by Road Traffic Act 1968 (25/1968), s. 21, not commenced as of date of revision.

F75 [ (3A) ( a ) Notwithstanding anything contained in subsection (3) of this section, a test under that subsection shall not be carried out save where the issuing authority has satisfied itself in the prescribed manner that the eyesight of the applicant or, in the case of an applicant with a defect of eyesight for the time being corrected, the eyesight of the applicant as so corrected, complies with the prescribed standard.

( b ) A person aggrieved by a refusal, in pursuance of paragraph ( a ) of this subsection, to carry out a test may appeal to a Justice of the District Court having jurisdiction in the place in which the person ordinarily resides, and the Justice may either refuse the appeal or, if satisfied that the eyesight or corrected eyesight of the applicant complies with the prescribed standard, direct the issuing authority to test or cause to be tested the applicant under subsection (3) of this section.

( c ) A decision under this subsection of a Justice of the District Court shall be final and not appealable. ]

C33

Issuing authority specified and powers of issuing authority modified (21.10.2006) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 2006 (S.I. No. 537 of 2006), regs. 3(1) and 23, as amended (19.01.2013) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 483 of 2011), reg. 2(i), in effect as per reg. 1(2).

Definitions.

3. (1) In these Regulations — ...

“Minister” means Minister for Transport;

...

Issuing authority and delegation of functions.

23. (1) The issuing authority for the purposes of section 33 of the Act is the Minister and in this Part “issuing authority” means the Minister.

(2) The functions of the issuing authority under section 33(4) of the Act are delegated to driver testers.

[(3) A driver tester shall meet the minimum standards set out in Schedule 8.

(4) The Road Safety Authority shall oversee implementation of the minimum standards for driver testers set out in Schedule 8 and shall carry out the functions assigned to it by the relevant standards. ]

C34

Procedure under subs. (4) provided (21.10.2006) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 2006 (S.I. No. 537 of 2006), reg. 29.

Deferred decision on application for certificate of competency.

29. (1) In a case where a decision on an application has been deferred under section 33(4) of the Act the applicant may submit to the issuing authority a valid certificate of fitness in respect of the category to which the application for a certificate of competency relates.

(2) On receipt of such certificate of fitness, the issuing authority shall, subject to section 33(4), either refuse the application for a certificate of competency or issue a certificate of competency.

C35

Application of section restricted (7.11.1989) by European Communities (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 1989 (S.I. No. 287 of 1989), arts. 3 and 4.

3. Notwithstanding section 33 (7) of the Road Traffic Act, 1961 (No. 24 of 1961), Regulations under section 42 of that Act may provide that the issuing authority for the purposes of section 33 of that Act shall not test or cause to be tested an applicant for a certificate of competency unless the applicant holds such driving licence or provisional licence as may be specified in the Regulations.

4. Regulations of the type referred to in Article 3 of these Regulations shall have effect in accordance with their terms and subsections (3) and (7) of section 33 and section 42 of the Road Traffic Act, 1961 are hereby amended accordingly.

C36

Limited certificates of competency under subs. (4)(b)(ii) provided (24.07.1969) by Road Traffic Act 1968 (25/1968), s. 22(1), S.I. No. 139 of 1969.

Limited certificates of competency for special cases.

22.—(1) Where an applicant for a certificate of competency under section 33 of the Principal Act so requests and the issuing authority within the meaning of that section so determines, a certificate of competency issued under subsection (4) (b) (ii) of that section to that applicant shall, notwithstanding anything in that Act, contain a statement that, in relation to a class of vehicles in respect of which the certificate is issued, it is limited to a specified type of vehicle belonging to that class.

...

Editorial Notes:

E325

A number of statutory instruments made pursuant to s. 42 of this Act were also made pursuant to this section. Where this occurred the relevant E-note in the annotations of s. 42 notes that the statutory instrument is also made pursuant to s. 33. These statutory instruments are not separately listed under this section.

E326

Test for purposes of subs. (4) prescribed (21.10.2006) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 2006 (S.I. No. 537 of 2006), reg. 26(1).

E327

Procedure in relation to appeals under subss. (5) and (6) prescribed (21.10.2006) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 2006 (S.I. No. 537 of 2006), reg. 30.

E328

Endorsements and disqualifications under section provided (21.10.2006) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 2006 (S.I. No. 537 of 2006), part 9 (regs. 42-52), as amended (19.01.2013) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) (Amendment) Regulations 2013 (S.I. No. 6 of 2013), reg. 3, in effect as per reg. 1(2).

E329

Previous affecting provision: power pursuant to this section and s. 5 exercised (31.10.1980) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 1980 (S.I. No. 334 of 1980); revoked (13.11.1989) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 1989 (S.I. No. 285 of 1989), reg. 60 and sch. 7.

E330

Previous affecting provision: issuing authority specified and powers of issuing authority modified and procedure under section provided (18.03.1964) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 1964 (S.I. No. 29 of 1964), regs. 25, 28, 31 and 32; revoked (13.11.1989) by Road Traffic (Licensing of Drivers) Regulations 1989 (S.I. No. 285 of 1989), reg. 60 and sch. 7.