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16 February 2024
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No changes to Earned Recognition scheme until further investigations

UK Government delays Earned Recognition scheme reforms for heavy vehicle testing, pending further analysis and stakeholder feedback.


Reforms of the heavy vehicle testing regime for operators who are part of the DVSA’s Earned Recognition scheme will only take place after further work has been carried out, the Government has announced.

It had called for evidence on the testing regime and said as a result, there was moderate support for change to the testing frequency. Some 89% of Earned Recognition members believe the testing regime for those operators should be amended, against 30% of non-Earned Recognition operators.

Earned Recognition is accredited to operators who show excellent standards of vehicle maintenance and driver safety. The Department for Transport (DfT) had laid out four options for reform. It says that two of them – reduction in test frequency and introduction of delegated testing – will be further considered.

A third option of improved service provision is already in hand, it said, while the fourth, which would have reduced test content, appears to have been dropped.

The DfT wants to better understand whether Earned Recognition ‘as is’ provides the confidence to implement either of the first two options and if adjustments can be made to the scheme to mitigate any risks from these changes. It also wants further insight into how the day-to-day practicalities could be handled, both from a legal and practical perspective.

A final decision on which, if any, option for change is adopted is expected to follow, but the DfT has given no indication on the timeline.


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