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Driving without Insurance, Tax or MOT

By: Sally Aquire - Updated: 4 Jun 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Driving Without Insurance Driving Tax

Driving without insurance is against the law, but that isn't enough to stop at least 1 million people in the UK from failing to insure their motor vehicle. The consumer website moneysupermarket.com found that as many as 15% of UK motorists have driven without insurance, with 9% of these having driven someone else's vehicle without being properly insured to do so. The law is clear on this: if you are in possession of a motor vehicle, you are legally obliged to get it insured and taxed, as well as putting it in for a yearly MOT test.

Driving Without Insurance

Driving without Insurance is illegal. You don't actually have to be driving the vehicle for it to be a criminal offence - if you own a vehicle that is not insured, you can be prosecuted even if you have never driven it. You can potentially be fined up to £5000 if you are caught, although the typical fine is often a lot less than this. You will also be given a number of penalty points on your driver's licence. You may, in some cases, have your license revoked. As well as driving an uninsured car, It is also illegal to let someone else borrow your car if they are not insured on it.

There are two main types of insurance: Comprehensive, and Third Party, Fire and Theft. Third Party insurance is mandatory, but it does not offer you protection if you are involved in an accident with an uninsured driver. For this, you are better off with the Comprehensive cover, although this is more expensive.

Driving Without Road Tax

Before October 2014, all drivers were obliged to display a disc in the front window of their vehicle to show that they had paid road tax. Vehicle tax data is now stored online so it is no longer necessary to display a tax disc; the police can establish immediately whether a car has been taxed by accessing the DVLA database. Monthly computer checks mean that it is becoming increasingly difficult to escape paying the tax. If you are found to have failed to purchase or renew your road tax, you will be fined, failure to pay this can result in a County Court Judgement, or having your vehicle clamped.

Driving Without an MOT

If your vehicle is at least three years old, it needs to pass an MOT test before it can be considered roadworthy. Driving a vehicle that has not successfully passed an MOT test is an offence and can land you with a £1000 fine, but will not usually result in penalty points. Driving without a valid MOT invalidates the insurance and if you were involved in an accident you would not be covered. MOT tests are carried out by most garages across the UK.

If you want to keep a clean driving licence, driving a vehicle that is not insured or taxed, or has not been in for an MOT, is never a good idea. The fines may be relatively small, but the damage to your reputation as a driver is much more difficult to reverse.

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[Add a Comment]
Kd - Your Question:
Hi av had a clean licence for 6 year but just got stopped on phone and ma new car was no insured does this mean am goin loose licence as police officer said add only get points for more serious on is this true

Our Response:
The penalty for being on the phone is £200 fine plus 6 penalty points. The penalty for driving without insurance is an unlimited fine and 6 to 8 points.
NoPenaltyPoints - 5-Jun-18 @ 11:49 AM
Hi av had a clean licence for 6 year but just got stopped on phone and ma new car was no insured does this mean am goin loose licence as police officer said add only get points for more serious on is this true
Kd - 4-Jun-18 @ 12:00 PM
Aaa- Your Question:
Hi I've brought a car recently It didn't have a log book so had to send off for one I'm still waiting I've got my car mot and insurance on it. So whats gonna happen if I got caught? Thanks

Our Response:
Contact the DVLA, ask them if they've received your request. If they have, you have evidence that you have requested one and should be fine if stopped.
NoPenaltyPoints - 27-Apr-18 @ 2:49 PM
Hi I've brought a car recently It didn't have a log book so had to send off for one I'm still waiting I've got my car mot and insurance on it.So whats gonna happen if I got caught? Thanks
Aaa - 25-Apr-18 @ 7:08 AM
Hi I've brought a bike recently It didn't have a log book so had to send off for one I'm still waiting been 3 weeks I've got my bike mot just I want to drive my bike but I can't tax it without a ref number is there anyway round this as I need to drive this weekend and if I get caught is it just a fine or will my bike be impounded
Me - 18-Apr-18 @ 9:06 PM
HI, just a quick question... iv bought a se cond hand car which isnt taxed. i taxed it online today and have received a confirmation email and direct debit installment email but im worried i will get stopped by the police because the car isnt yet showing on the data base as taxed.... will a police car know that im taxed even though it is showing as untaxed.. thank you
advice pleaase - 12-Apr-18 @ 1:41 PM
My car failed it's mot today and now no longer has a valid mot. I am booked in for the works and a retest but not until Tuesday. My tax is due on Saturday. I do not have a driveway so I can't declare it off the road so I have no clue what to do. If I pay my tax I will be fined for no mot and if I don't drive it Other than taking it for works then I will be done for no tax as I am parked on a public road. Is there anything I can do to inform the DVLA of the issue or should I just tax it and wait for a fine to come through the door for no mot?! Help!
Gward5 - 29-Mar-18 @ 11:21 PM
Hi there, I hope you can give me some advice: I was informed by my breakdown cover this morning that I haven't have a valid MOT since last March! I genuinely didn't realise this was the case and I'm worried sick that something is going to happen... I didn't realise you had to get one done each year and thought you got informed of when to renew like with the tax. Of course I've since booked it in for an MOT and won't be driving the car until its had the MOT... but I'm just very worried about the situation, any advice would be helpful. Thanks
Rewty - 23-Feb-18 @ 1:24 PM
nnnn - Your Question:
Hello today while I driving police stop me when shows me follow me on the road. I was going to Work!!! and they stop me on M6. then take my car and tell me to pay the next day. but didnt explame me why. why.why they stop.me and take my car. I will lose my job now. I dont go. WHY ????

Our Response:
We don't know why. The easiest way to find out would be to contact the police and ask them.
NoPenaltyPoints - 30-Jan-18 @ 12:28 PM
Hello today while i driving police stop me when shows me follow me on the road.i was going to Work!!! and they stop me on M6 .. then take my car and tell me to pay the next day .. but didnt explame me why .. why ..why they stop.me and take my car ... i will lose my job now.. i dont go... WHY ????
nnnn - 28-Jan-18 @ 9:23 PM
I purchased a new car and had my old car on the drive, its tax ran out before i could sell it, however my log book for old car had another address ( i realise this was not clever either, but when they found me at my new address to send me on a speed awareness course.I thought my records somewhere must be right) Anyway in the end i had a bailiff letter with an amount i needed to pay and this was the first time i knew there was a problem. I paid the fine as i realise i should have declared it sorn etc but i have had no more notice from the dvla. I'm renewing my insurance but i'm not sure if its actually a conviction or what the code should be because i have nothing on my licence
sharpie - 25-Jan-18 @ 8:39 AM
Eve- Your Question:
Hi, the police pulled me over after finding out the curtsey car I was using had no insurance, mot or tax. The garage that lent me the car Told me that everything was included with the car and that they sorted it out. So I assumed that I did not have to do anything else. I’m so worried, I’m 20 years old and I’ve never been though this before. What would be the most likely concequeses???

Our Response:
What did the police say when you explained? Did the police say what their next steps will be? You would normally be told if you need your own insurance for a courtesy car (and most garages have generic cover for this anyway). We suggest if the police decide to take it further with you, that you get legal help...your local Citizens' Advice will be able to help you find support.
NoPenaltyPoints - 16-Jan-18 @ 12:04 PM
Hi, the police pulled me over after finding out the curtsey car I was using had no insurance, mot or tax. The garage that lent me the car Told me that everything was included with the car and that they sorted it out. So I assumed that I did not have to do anything else. I’m so worried, I’m 20 years old and I’ve never been though this before. What would be the most likely concequeses???
Eve - 13-Jan-18 @ 1:10 PM
My wife was driving our car unknowingly (I'm aware this makes no odds) without MOT & Car Insurance when she was pulled over by a marked police car. We have previously driven this car without MOT (you'd think we'd learn our lesson) and recieved an on the spot £70 fine. She has 3 points already on her license for speeding (34 in a 30 zone) captured by speed camera. Any idea what to expect in 6/10 weeks when we hear back from the DVLA
Fitzy - 3-Jan-18 @ 9:14 PM
Dal - Your Question:
Does anyone know if you can still be fined for driving a vehicle without tax (on the day of purchase), if it was taxed later that day and, as is now the case, the tax is backdated to the start of the month.Theoretically, the car was taxed.

Our Response:
If you are stopped by the police/caught on ANPR with no tax then you can be fined regardless of whether you purchased it subsequently.
NoPenaltyPoints - 3-Jan-18 @ 11:39 AM
Baller - Your Question:
I was caught driving a car that I was uninsured on and I am 17 with no liscence but they think I have a provisional they said I will go to court but as I haven’t got into this problem ever or ever got into a problem with the police and it was Christmas and they were nice enough to bring the car back to my house what will happen do you think

Our Response:
You will probably receive a court summons in due course. The judge will look at all your circumstances and you'll most probably incur a fine and points on your licence when you get it.
NoPenaltyPoints - 2-Jan-18 @ 2:42 PM
Does anyone know if you can still be fined for driving a vehicle without tax (on the day of purchase), if it was taxed later that day and, as is now the case, the tax is backdated to the start of the month. Theoretically, the car was taxed.
Dal - 30-Dec-17 @ 10:48 AM
I was caught driving a car that I was uninsured on and i am 17 with no liscence but they think I have a provisional they said I will go to court but as I haven’t got into this problem ever or ever got into a problem with the police and it was Christmas and they were nice enough to bring the car back to my house what will happen do you think
Baller - 25-Dec-17 @ 3:41 AM
Kashi - Your Question:
Hi,I caught by police while driving 4 persons at back. Police checked my licence and everything and then he said don't worry you will not get any penalty or points but you have to do a course and you will receive the letter in couple of weeks. I didn't receive any letter till three weeks then I called on 101 and asked for the issue then he said I cant find your any record so don't worry about it but after two week I got the letter for fixed penalty £100 and 3 points. So what should I do now. Should I go to court to challenge this penalty.Kind Regards.

Our Response:
No you can't challenge the penalty unfortunately. The police officer might have suggested an awareness course to you, but the officer that stopped you doesn't always have the decision power in these cases.
NoPenaltyPoints - 12-Dec-17 @ 11:13 AM
Hi, I caught by police while driving 4 persons at back. Police checked my licence and everything and then he said don't worry you will not get any penalty or points but you have to do a course and you will receive the letter in couple of weeks. I didn't receive any letter till three weeks then I called on 101 and asked for the issue then he said I cant find your any record so don't worry about it but after two week I got the letter for fixed penalty £100 and 3 points. So what should I do now. Should I go to court to challenge this penalty. Kind Regards.
Kashi - 9-Dec-17 @ 6:48 PM
Its realy simple if you have no insurence or mot or tax then it should be on the road at all and driving someone else car not noing if your aloud to on your insurence is just stuiped you ask on the fone when you take the insurence out its a little think called common sense were all tought it on a driveing and theroy test simple things to rember realy
Matt - 7-Dec-17 @ 1:13 AM
Moose - Your Question:
Himy son is driving a works van,and the TAX ran out on the 01/11/17his employer has not renewed it yet 05/12/17who is going to get nicked for this offenceand could my boy get points on his licenceThanks for you help

Our Response:
To be honest we can't find a definitive answer to this. It's the driver's responsibility to make sure the vehicle is legal, roadworthy etc. If he refused to drive it and was subsequently dismissed or disciplined, he'd have a pretty strong case to appeal it.
NoPenaltyPoints - 6-Dec-17 @ 11:30 AM
Hi my son is driving a works van,and the TAX ran out on the 01/11/17 his employer has not renewed it yet 05/12/17 who is going to get nicked for this offence and could my boy get points on his licence Thanks for you help
Moose - 5-Dec-17 @ 1:57 PM
Thank you for your concise answer . Just two other questions- 1) does driving a car on a sorn invalidate your insurance . I am informed that so long as a car has an mot it doesn't as its really a tax and not driving issue ? 2) You say the fine can be upto £2500 max? I am led to brlieve that generally the fine is levied at 6 to 12 months of the tax on the car tax . Is that generally true if there is a reasonable and obviously not fraudulent reason . Have you seen experience of levels of fines? So it seems the choice is as follows . Pay your tax or drive your car on a sorn and risk getting caught. To me it seems that that the probability is the police won't bother impounding the car and you will get some level of fine upto 2500 max but more likely upto one years road tax fine. No risk of points or invalidating insurance . You might wonder why I ask. I spoke with an Arab the other day who has 10 super cars in London .He drives every car on a sorn ! Each car costs in excess of £600 to tax per year, so annually approx £7200. As he put it . He drives his cars rarely and and has been doing it for a year. It doesn't take a genius to work out he is up financially already ! It's appalling and there is no wonder the stupid DVLA are £90m down on road tax this year !So we all know what to do if ever we are lucky enough to have a fleet of super cars !
Carlover - 28-Nov-17 @ 10:13 PM
Carlover - Your Question:
Hi, can anyone answer the following questions on driving a car whilst on a SORN -1) is it an offence that will result in licence penalty points ?2) what is the range in cost of fine / possible car impounding?3) if caught by a police officer is it at their discretion to impound the car or offer a fixed penalty notice? 4) is it only ANPR police car cameras that can detect you do not have road tax ?Thank you

Our Response:
(1) You face court prosecution and a fine of up to £2,500 if you use a SORN vehicle on the road for any other reason than taking it directly to an MOT testing station. Driving a SORN vehicle on the road doesn't usually incur points
(2) If your car is impounded you'll usually have to a pay a £100 release fee and buy vehicle tax before collecting it. If you don't get vehicle tax when you collect your vehicle, you'llhave to pay a 'surety' (deposit) of s £160 for a car or motorcycle. The longer your vehicle is impounded the higher the fine and the risk of being destroyed
(3) We don't know if FPNs can be given if stopped by the police for driving a SORN vehicle
(4) ANPR police car cameras can detect automatically, but police officers in any other vehicle can quickly find out whether your car is taxed, SORN etc, by doing a radio check.
NoPenaltyPoints - 28-Nov-17 @ 11:59 AM
Hi, can anyone answer the following questions on driving a car whilst on a SORN - 1) is it an offence that will result in licence penalty points ? 2) what is the range in cost of fine / possible car impounding? 3) if caught by a police officer is it at their discretion to impound the car or offer a fixed penalty notice? 4) is it only ANPR police car cameras that can detect you do not have road tax ? Thank you
Carlover - 27-Nov-17 @ 12:35 AM
VS - Your Question:
Hi,I caught by the police while I was driving my work colleague's car ,he was not well , on that time I was not aware my insurance doesn't cover me for other vehicle, as I am a new driver since June 2017.any chance to save my licence to get penalty or revoke.thanksvikrant

Our Response:
The usual fixed penalty for driving without insurance is £300 fine and 6 penalty points. If you're a new driver, you will lose your licence if you attain 6 points within the two years following your test.
NoPenaltyPoints - 3-Nov-17 @ 11:34 AM
Hi, I caught by the police while I was driving my work colleague's car ,he was not well , on that time i was not aware my insurance doesn't cover me for other vehicle, as I am a new driver since June 2017. any chance to save my licence to get penalty or revoke. thanks vikrant
VS - 2-Nov-17 @ 4:31 PM
Marie - Your Question:
Hi, a friend took a car to a garage and was told it is no longer road worthy and needs to be scrapped. So he left it with them they said they'd complete relevant paperwork. Fastforward he is now being taken to court for driving his vehicle without insurance or tax. He hadn't driven it the garage company had sold on or something to that effect and the new driver was driving around with it uninsured and no tax. The garage has sent docs to the court stating they had written car off and failed to do relevant paperwork but we have court Wednesday. Any advice on what the process should've been at the beginning?

Our Response:
If you are "scrapping" your vehicle you should hand over the vehicle log book (V5C), but keep the yellow slip (V5C/3) from it. You then need to tell DVLA that you have scrapped.
NoPenaltyPoints - 11-Oct-17 @ 10:44 AM
Hi, a friend took a car to a garage and was told it is no longer road worthy and needs to be scrapped. So he left it with them they said they'd complete relevant paperwork. Fastforward he is now being taken to court for driving his vehicle without insurance or tax. He hadn't driven it the garage company had sold on or something to that effect and the new driver was driving around with it uninsured and no tax. The garage has sent docs to the court stating they had written car off and failed to do relevant paperwork but we have court Wednesday. Any advice on what the process should've been at the beginning?
Marie - 9-Oct-17 @ 6:46 PM
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