MOT-exempt classics left with no tax disc

Admin blunder leaves old-timers with no road fund licence

Published:  16 May, 2013

THOUSANDS of classic owners could struggle to get their newly MOT-exempt cars taxed because of ongoing "technical issues" between the DVLA and VOSA, according to a story from industry body IAAF.

Owners of cars manufactured before 1960 have been complaining of problems obtaining their tax discs due to the DVLA's computer systems not recognising the MOT exemption, which was introduced last November.

The DVLA admitted that it had encountered "technical issues" regarding its computer systems recognising the MOT exemptions for some pre-1960 vehicles, but added that it is working on rectifying the issue and that it should not arise again when the vehicles affected are relicensed. While it was unable to say exactly how many vehicles were affected, it said that the problem only involved pre-1960 vehicles where the MOT was due to expire around the period the vehicle was being licensed and that a "very low" number of owners would encounter problems.

David Whitbread of the DVLA said, "The Electronic Vehicle Licensing system is linked to the MOT database run by the Vehicle Operator Services Agency (VOSA). Due to the short period of time between the announcement of the exemption in February and its introduction in November, the DVLA was unable to make the necessary system changes to remove the usual MOT check that vehicles go through before a tax disc is issued.

"Customers who are unable to licence via the Electronic Vehicle Licensing system can licence at a Post Office but they will require a completed V112 (Declaration of exemption from MOT testing) where the customer declares that their vehicle is exempt."

Classic car enthusiasts are understandably annoyed. MG YA owner John Morris said: "Getting a tax disc has been a nightmare. I tried to tax my MG online and the system wouldn't let me do it, so I rang the DVLA, who told me to go to a Post Office to tax it as their computer system does not recognise the MOT exemption."

"I went to the Post Office, but was refused a tax disc because the staff there said I needed an MOT. I've been going round in circles, bit I've still not got any road tax for my classic!"

Although pre-1972 vehicles are 'tax exempt' they still need to display the disc to legally be allowed on the road. Police will certainly pull over a car - and can have it impounded - if the licence is not on the screen.

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