your car overdue for its MOT test?|
members may be unaware of the current size of the penalty for driving a car without
a current MOT certificate. With classic
cars often insurance, road tax disc and MOT expiry dates can get out of sync so
the renewal dates can be at various times in the year - so losing track of the
MOT expiry date is very easy to do.
In the past that might have been brushed aside as a mistake and have been rectified
as soon as you spotted it - but not now! Driving
a car without a current MOT (even unwittingly) can result in a costly fine.
tabs on road tax, insurance and MOT renewal dates
We have a convenient
data card (the same size as a debit or credit card) upon which you can record
those key dates and keep them in handy place as a regular reminder of when the
expiry dates are coming up. 110705
Insurance Enforcement (CIE)
With insurance, two offences exist with very
different penalties. The newer offence of having no insurance when the vehicle
is not SORNED gets a warning letter first, then a small fine. Using a vehicle
on the road with no insurance gets a large fine and 6 to 8 points or disqualification.
Road Traffic Offenders
Act 1988 Sch 2. More
Court Sentencing Guidelines, pages 135, 148 and 151. More
to a MOT test appointment without a current MOT certificate. More
thanks to Chris Hunt Cooke for his major contribution to this useful news item.
insurance company will inform you when your renewal is due and the DVLA will inform
you when your road tax is due but there is no official reminder when your current
MOT test certificate is due to expire and renewal is necessary. With classic cars
the insurance, road tax disc and MOT expiry dates can get out of sync so the renewal
dates can be at various times in the year - losing track of the MOT expiry date
is very easy to do. What may not be generally known is the consequences of driving
a car without a current MOT (even unwittingly) can be a costly fine.|
valid MOT certificate - what is the offence?|
The MOT offence in s.47 RTA
1988 is defined as A person who uses on a road at any time, or causes or
permits to be so used, a motor vehicle to which this section applies, and
for which no test certificate has been issued within the appropriate period
before that time, is guilty of an offence. Therefore use on a road is the
crucial point, simply being the registered keeper of such a vehicle is not an
offence. Note that "use" for this purpose is widely defined and would
include parking on a public road or place. The
offence of driving without an MOT does not carry penalty points. However if your
car is on a SORN, so is off the road, not having a valid MOT is not an offence,
but before you can apply (as the registered keeper of the vehicle) for a new tax
disc you would need to have your car MOT tested and a valid MOT test certificate
with your application for the tax disc.
and the power of computer based vehicle records and checks
of all UK registered vehicles along with the current status of the road tax, insurance
and MOT test for each vehicle are now kept on computer databases. The
Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) system used by police vehicles and certain
static roadside cameras can access DVLA records, the insurance database MID and
the MOT database kept by VOSA (soon to be DVSA). The ANPR system can check the
status of any vehicle, which includes the validity of the MOT test certificate.
So detecting non compliant vehicles is now a far easier and less costly exercise
for DVLA and the police, particularly with identifying and tracing cars used on
the public roads without motor insurance cover. Most motoring enthusiasts would
feel tracing uninsured cars and their owners (or registered keepers) is very desirable
and crushing some of the cars of the worst offenders is a good thing too as uninsured
drivers are a real scourge and a cost to all law abiding motorists.
is the penalty for driving a car without a valid MOT certificate?
doubt the vast majority of cases are dealt with by a fixed penalty notice,
which in this case is £50, increased from £30 in August 2013.
It is not an endorsable offence, so there are no penalty points. Where a case
goes to court, either contested by the vehicle owner (for example the car was
being driven to an appointment for an MOT test), or an MOT offence is wrapped
up with another offence (for example having no insurance), the applicable penalty
is given in the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 Sch 2 and is a maximum of a
Level 3 fine for a normal car. Rather than alter thousands of pieces of legislation
every time fines need to be updated, fines are set in relation to standard levels
so that adjustments are simply made by redefining the standard level. The maximum
Level 3 fine is currently £1,000 which is presumably where the media
get their headline grabbing figure. As with all sentencing, the maximum sentence
would only be considered for the worst possible instance of the offence, with
no mitigation and every possible aggravating feature.
The starting point
for sentencing most summary offences is given in the Magistrates Court Sentencing
Guidelines, which courts are obliged to follow. This offence has a starting point
of a Band A fine, 50% of Relevant Weekly Income, normally weekly net income. Generally
net income is after income tax and National Insurance deductions. A guilty plea
at the earliest opportunity attracts a discount of 33%. Victims Surcharge
on fines is 10% with a minimum of £20. Prosecution costs for a summary matter
on a guilty plea would probably be £85 (£620 following a not guilty
plea and a trial, depending on witnesses called and complexity). For
net weekly income of say £350 the starting point for a fine, following an
early guilty plea, would be £350 x 50% x 67% - amounting to £117.25.
The surcharge would be 10% of the fine, minimum £20, and costs £85.
A total of £222.25.
on the public road without a valid MOT certificate - an exception
drive your car without a current MOT to a pre-booked MOT test or after an MOT
test failure to a pre-booked garage appointment for repairs. More
Will not having a current
MOT certificate might invalidate part of your motor
Some press reports have suggested
the absence of an MOT certificate might invalidate the insurance cover for the
vehicle, but our understanding is this would not be the case as in fact any term
in a policy which purported to do that would have no effect, see s.148 RTA 1988.
However, depending on the wording of your motor insurance policy, your cover may
be reduced if you do not have a current MOT certificate. More
many cars miss the deadline for getting a new MOT certificate?
In a brief
report in the Independent newspaper on 11th March 2014 they said "more than
335,000 motorists risk a fine every month by missing the renewal of their car's
MOT." This surprising figure presumably includes both cars seen on the road
by ANPR and quietly parked up in garages or on private drives. With greater awareness
of the fine for failing to have a current MOT one would expect this number to
Register - MG Car Club - the
leading group for MG V8 enthusiasts at www.v8register.net|