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How to manage paid or volunteer drivers in voluntary organisations

Do your employees or volunteers use their own, borrowed or leased vehicles for your business? Do you know how to manage these drivers and what you should do to reduce risk where the vehicle they’re using doesn’t belong to your organisation?


Know your legal responsibilities

As an employer, you are responsible for ensuring the health and safety of your employees and volunteers. And that includes whilst driving on behalf of your organisation. You should manage health and safety proactively; carrying out assessments of risk to your employees, volunteers and also to others outside of your organisation, and then mitigate these risks as much as possible.


Make Checks

You have a responsibility to carry out some essential checks, including:

  • Recording who is authorised to drive on your behalf
  • Checking they have the relevant qualifications or experience and are fit to drive
  • Conducting appropriate DBS checks - establish whether the driving role is eligible for a DBS check or not and then implementing the check
  • Making sure the vehicles used (whether yours or the driver’s) are roadworthy and correctly licenced/MOT’d
  • Ensuring the drivers and cars are insured correctly for their purpose

Checks like these are vital to ensuring that you’re being legally compliant and diligent in your duty.



The answers to all the checks you have made above should be recorded. All records and information retained should be kept in line with Data Protection Legislation. In addition, you should regularly review the information and record any changes or corrective actions taken to address concerns.


Communicate policy

You should communicate your policy on managing volunteer drivers within your organisation and, in some cases, to the public too. This is all part of the effort to be transparent. All your checks and rules (think about Accident Reporting procedures, Driving Under the Influence policy and Speed Guidance) should be communicated internally. Items such as miles covered, carbon footprint and any carbon offsetting may be of interest to the public and should be communicated too.

Further information

Insurance for volunteer drivers

The motor insurance sector has recognised that charities and policyholders who want to help their communities through volunteer driving need clear and accurate information on their insurance coverage. As such, they have created a document Volunteer Driving – The Motor Insurance Commitment to help organisations. Find out more on the motor insurance commitment to volunteer driving. It’s important that all charities operating volunteer drivers – and the drivers themselves – read the document.

Other information



Page last edited Jul 18, 2019 History

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