In Depth

Untaxed cars have tripled since paper discs were scrapped

Some buyers may be ‘forgetting’ to tax second-hand vehicles

The amount of untaxed vehicles on Britain’s roads has tripled since paper tax discs were abolished, The Guardian reports.

Figures from the Department for Transport reveal that 1.8% of car owners “failed to pay or renew vehicle excise duty”, the newspaper says. That equates to around 700,000 vehicles, which are “mostly cars and light goods vehicles.”

It’s a substantial increase on the 0.6% of car owners who failed to pay tax in 2013, the paper adds, which was the penultimate year of the paper disc. This resulted in the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) collecting £200m less in tax between 2016-17 compared to 2013-14.

The RAC’s public affairs chief, Nicholas Lyes, says that the principle of abolishing the tax disc was to introduce greater efficiencies has “evidently failed.” 

“It appears that having a visual reminder was an effective way to prompt drivers into renewing their car tax – arguably more drivers are now prepared to try their luck and see if they can get away with not paying any vehicle tax at all”, he says, “or are simply forgetting to tax their vehicle when they are due to.” 

Lyes also said that a third of untaxed vehicles were the result of a change of ownership, where buyers forgot to tax their new vehicle after purchasing it.  

Currently, road tax is not transferred when a car’s ownership changes.

Recommended

Should cyclists have to abide by the same rules as drivers?
Two cyclists commute
Today’s big question

Should cyclists have to abide by the same rules as drivers?

The long road to justice for infected blood scandal victims
Blood bags
Getting to grips with . . .

The long road to justice for infected blood scandal victims

What is Tony Blair up to now?
Tony Blair
In Depth

What is Tony Blair up to now?

Citroën C5 Aircross: what the car critics say
The UK price for the Citroën C5 Aircross 2022 starts from £26,175
Expert’s view

Citroën C5 Aircross: what the car critics say

Popular articles

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 17 August 2022
10 Downing Street
Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 17 August 2022

Is World War Three on the cards?
Ukrainian soldiers patrol on the frontline in Zolote, Ukraine
In Depth

Is World War Three on the cards?

Inside Adelaide Cottage: Prince William and Kate’s new home ‘away from prying eyes’
William and Kate
In Depth

Inside Adelaide Cottage: Prince William and Kate’s new home ‘away from prying eyes’

The Week Footer Banner