The Government is planning a crackdown on drivers who fail to progress to a full licence by introducing a five-year cap.
It comes as Associate Transport Minister Simon Bridges labelled learner and restricted drivers complacent, saying they "lacked respect" for the conditions of their licences.
The current 10-year life of learner and restricted licences will be reduced to five years , in an effort to prevent progression to a full licence being seen as 'optional'.
Currently, nearly 40 percent of learner drivers and 32 percent of restricted drivers have their licences for more than six years.
Mr Bridges says the current law never intended drivers to stay on learner and restricted licences indefinitely.
“What these drivers need to do is demonstrate their skills and competence and graduate to a full licence in a reasonable time,” he says.
Changes to the life span of learner and restricted licences will come into affect by 2015. However, the life-span of a full licence will remain at 10 years.