LTO issues guideline on extension of driver's license validity amid plastic card shortage

The Land Transportation Office (LTO) has issued the guidelines on the extension of driver’s license amid the shortage of the plastic cards which was aggravated by the legal battle between two companies which participated in the bidding process.

In a memorandum issued to the agency’s regional directors, LTO chief Vigor Mendoza II granted the validity of driver’s license that expired on April 3 this year until April 2, 2024 “or until such time availability of plastic cards is sufficient, which will be the subject of a separate memorandum.” 

But on doing so, Mendoza stressed that no LTO office shall collect penalties for the expired license covered by the memorandum.

He also tasked all LTOP regional directors and district office heads to have the system generated driver’s license official receipt be stamped or printed with “Valid as Temporary Driver’s License Until Plastic Card is Released,” and that it should include the following details:

-       The name of the issuing office, contact personnel/cellphone number/email address;

-       The name and signature of the releasing officer; and 

-       A screenshot of the client’s driver’s license card (front and back) printed at the back of the official receipt. 

“The old or expired driver’s license card must be returned to the owner and shall be valid until the new plastic card is released,” said Mendoza. 

The DOTr earlier initiated the procurement of five million pieces of plastic cards that Mendoza said are more than enough to wipe out the backlog by early next year. The LTO, on the other hand, facilitated the distribution of the delivered plastic cards. 

Around 100,000 plastic cards were already delivered by the winning bidder Banner Plasticards but the production and delivery were halted by the Temporary Restraining Order issued by a Quezon City court based on the case filed by Allcards Inc. which lost in the bidding process.

There is still no word as to whether or not the 20-day TRO is already lifted. The TRO is supposed to lapse on Wednesday, Sept. 6.

“The DOTr and the LTO are currently working together to address the backlog in the driver’s license due to shortage of plastic cards that are being used to print it,” said Mendoza.