Insurance move to cut red tape of taxing vehicles

Motorists will no longer need motor insurance policies to be checked when getting their vehicle tax. The change, announced today by roads minister Robert Goodwill, is part of a package of measures to get rid of unnecessary red tape.

The changes, which come into force from Monday, December 16, also mean that motorists will only need to tell DVLA once when they declare their vehicle off the road. Currently, motorists who make a statutory off road notification (SORN) have to renew their SORN every year. Last year, around four million SORNs were made, with more than a million of those repeat renewals.

Mr Goodwill said: “We want to make it as easy as possible for motorists to access government services.

“Getting rid of needless bits of paper, making changes to free up motorists’ time, while saving money for the taxpayer, is all part of our commitment to get rid of unnecessary red tape.”

The changes to insurance checks have been made possible because DVLA regularly checks existing databases for insurance under continuous insurance enforcement rules. DVLA’s records are compared regularly with the motor insurance database (MID) to identify registered keepers of vehicles that have no insurance.

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Ashton West, chief executive at the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB), said: “Motor insurance remains a legal requirement and these changes recognise the value and importance of the insurance records held centrally on the MID. The introduction of continuous insurance enforcement in 2011 was always designed to provide a more robust and technology-driven solution to ensuring that vehicles have insurance in place. The successful introduction of the new process by the DVLA and the MIB has enabled these changes to be made now, which will bring benefits to millions of motorists.”

Commenting on the changes to declaring SORN, Geoff Lancaster of the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs said: “DVLA are to be congratulated for making sensible use of their technology to maintain their high standards of service while at the same time simplifying life for road-users.”

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