WHILE the law states you have to be 21 or older to supervise a learner driver, some insurance policies require you to be at least 25 years old.
Being underage could invalidate their car cover and lead to a driving ban, unlimited fine and up to eight points on their provisional licence.
Similarly, some insurers require driving supervisors to be under a certain age too – with 75 years old being a common upper limit.
You also need to have held a full UK driving licence for at least three years – or from countries within the EU or EEA.
Failing this is punishable by a fine up to £1,000 and six penalty points for the learner.
Taking payment for supervising or teaching a provisional licence holder is prohibited unless you are an approved instructor.
It is also important to note that all road traffic laws for drivers apply to driving supervisors as well.
This means it is illegal for you to use a phone as a passenger while giving driving lessons or be over the drink-driving limit.
Further to that, your eyesight must meet legal standards to supervise a learner; you need to be able to read a car number plate that’s 20 metres away – with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary.
Learner drivers are allowed to have other people in the car with them that do not meet any of the requirements, as long as the person in the front passenger seat does.
It is crucial to sit beside the learner, not in the back seats, so you can take control of the car in an emergency.
You could be liable for prosecution if you are found to be incapable of intervention.
Needless to say, a provisional licence holder must be insured on the car they are driving. If they are borrowing a car, the owner’s policy must cover learner drivers.
Official L plates should be put on both the front and back of the vehicle, or D plates in Wales.
It’s also your duty to make sure the car is in roadworthy condition, and carrying out official ‘show me tell me‘ questions before driving is advised by road safety charity IAM RoadSmart.
Supervisors can record a learner driver’s progress using the DVSA’s diary printout.
Richard Gladman, IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards, said: “Research proves that a combination of professional lessons and extra practice builds experience and can give a new driver a firm foundation for a safe driving career.
“Driving is a life skill so approach it properly with a good plan and a clear idea of how your miles together fit in with the approved syllabus.”