Insurance and MOT needed to tax your vehicle
Before you can tax your vehicle you must have suitable insurance cover in place and if needed, the vehicle must be MOT tested. The wrong insurance cover, an overdue MOT, insurance certificates that are incorrect, misplaced or late arriving, these can all stop you from taxing your vehicle on time.
Insurance cover needed to tax your vehicle
In order to tax your vehicle, you must have insurance cover that:
- covers you against third party claims for death or injury and damage to property caused by using the vehicle
- covers your use of the vehicle for taxing purposes
- is valid on the day the tax disc comes into force
The insurance policy for your vehicle may allow you to drive any other vehicle with the owners permission. However, your policy cant be used as evidence of suitable insurance to tax any other vehicle.
If your insurance cover for taxing purposes isnt clear, you may need to provide additional evidence. Please contact your insurance company for advice.
Insurance certificates and cover notes
These are usually a printed or laser-printed document, or a plastic credit card style document.
The following documents aren't acceptable:
- policy schedule
- renewal notice
- receipt for payment
- amended certificate or cover note - unless stamped or initialled by the insurer
- legal protection policy certificates
- foreign certificates
- photocopies or faxes
- insurance certificates downloaded directly from the internet by the policy holder
- Green Card (International Motor Insurance Card)
Get a duplicate insurance certificate or cover note from your insurance company.
You can't tax your vehicle until your insurance certificate arrives or your insurance cover for your vehicle has been updated on the Motor Insurance Database. You must keep your vehicle off the road in the meantime.
If you are taxing your vehicle using the DVLAs vehicle online service, then youll need to wait until MID has updated before applying. You can check online to see if your insurance has updated.
If you want to tax your vehicle at a DVLA local office or Post Office branch, youll need to take your insurance certificate.
MOT due dates
An MOT test is needed every year for:
- cars, motorcycles, motor caravans and light goods vehicles that are more than three years old
- passenger carrying vehicles with more than eight seats and taxis (not including private hire vehicles) that are more than one year old
Check the expiry date of your current MOT online or by calling the MOT status check service on 0870 330 0444.
MOT test certificate
You must produce an MOT test certificate thats valid on the day the tax disc comes into force. A certificate that expires on the last day of the month eg 30 April cant be used if the tax disc is to start on the first day of the following month eg 1 May. The certificate must be original, a photocopy is not acceptable.
Get a duplicate from any MOT testing station for the fee of 10. Youll need to provide the vehicle registration mark and reference number shown on your registration certificate (V5C).
Claim exemption from MOT testing
If your vehicle is exempt from MOT testing, youll need to fill in form V112 Claim for exemption from MOT testing to produce instead of the MOT certificate. A list of exempt vehicles is shown on the V112 form.
- Download Exemption from MOT testing - form V112 (PDF, 152K)
MOT or insurance has expired
If you intend to renew your vehicle tax you should do so before your current tax disc expires. However, this isnt always possible if you are waiting for insurance or getting an MOT for your vehicle.
Youll be committing an offence if you use or keep your vehicle on the public road without a current tax disc. If you cant get a tax disc, you must remove your vehicle off the road.
Youll have 14 days to get a tax disc or make a SORN, while your vehicle is off the road.
Driving an untaxed vehicle to an MOT test
You can drive your vehicle to and from a pre-arranged test at an MOT test station as long as you have adequate insurance cover in place for the use of that vehicle.
This is also for vehicles being driven to and from a pre-arranged test at a Vehicle Inspection Check (VIC) test station, an approved weight testing station and reduced pollution test.
More useful links
- General information about motor insurance
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