In the United Kingdom, you need to display a valid car tax disc on your windscreen if your car is being used on the road. You have a brief grace period from the expiration of the car tax disc in which you can buy a new one, but you'll find it much easier to do it before the expiration date. There are several ways to renew your car tax disc.
In order to obtain a new car tax disc, you need to present several pieces of paperwork. First of all, you have to possess the logbook, also known as the V5C, to show that you own the vehicle. If you've just bought the vehicle recently and don't have the logbook yet, you should still have the tear-off part of it, so take that with you. In addition to this, you need a valid MOT certificate for the vehicle. An MOT runs for 12 months and proves that the car has passed the necessary standards to be deemed as roadworthy.
On top of this, you need an insurance certificate that shows coverage for the vehicle. Without valid insurance or any of the other paperwork, you won't be able to renew the car tax disc. A disc expires at the end of a specified month. You can renew it during the month before that date. You can renew for a full year or just for 6 months.
Where to Renew
You can renew your car tax disc in person at the Post Office. The downside to this is that you need to wait in line and the transaction can take several minutes because everything is done by hand. The advantage is that you walk out with the new car tax disc in hand and you can display it immediately. If you're late buying it, this is the best option.
An alternative is to renew your car tax disc by phone. To accomplish this, call the number on the renewal notice you received in the post (the notice is called a V11). Use this number, or have your logbook handy. In order for this to work, your vehicle will have to be on the MOT database and the car insurance database, both of which show you have proper coverage. You'll be walked through the process and you can make your payment using a credit card or debit card. After that, the new car tax disc will be mailed to you.
You can make an online car tax payment to renew your tax disc. The V11 notice gives you the URL for the site where you can renew. Enter the renewal number, answer a couple of brief questions, make your payment online and your new disc will be sent to you.
If you have a damaged tax disc that is torn or ripped, you must replace it. This can be done at the local DVLA office or by mail at a cost of £7.
Requirements for a Car Tax Disc Refund
If you plan to keep a vehicle non operational or otherwise off the road, you can apply for a car tax disc refund. There are certain conditions which apply to the vehicle and the owner. The main criteria falls under certain categories that will be described in this article.
If you currently own or are the registered keeper of a vehicle and wish to apply for a tax disc refund, you are required to make a valid SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification) declaration. This declaration determines that the vehicle has been or will be kept off the road and not used on a public highway for any purpose until another valid tax disc has been purchased for it. The SORN is valid for a maximum of one year, and must be renewed if you still intend to keep the vehicle off the road. If you do tax your vehicle again within 21 days of declaring a SORN you will not qualify for a road tax disc refund. For further details please visit the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency's website.
You may also qualify for a car tax disc refund if you have recently scrapped the vehicle. You are required to take your vehicle and its Registration Certificate (V5C) to an Authorized Treatment Facility (ATF) before you apply for a refund.
If you sold or gave the vehicle to an insurer to be scrapped, and did not receive confirmation of scrapping, sale or transfer, you are required to complete section 9 of the V5C and return it with your application for a car tax disc refund. If you do not have a V5C you must include a signed letter with your application. The letter must include details of the vehicle, the company who scrapped it and the date that the vehicle was scrapped.
If your vehicle was stolen, you must have reported it to the police and obtained a crime report and number. This report must be presented with your application to the DVLA.
Nil Tax Class
The DVLA will also pay you a refund if you have recently changed your vehicle class to that of a "nil tax" class. For example, if you have applied for a disabled class. You should do this before you apply for a car tax disc refund.
If you do not tell the DVLA that you have sold, transferred, scrapped, exported or made a SORN declaration on your vehicle, you will not receive a car tax disc refund. You may also be committing an offence.
You should not apply for a refund if your vehicle is about to have the registration number transferred or retained. Your application will also be rejected if your personal details do not match, exactly, those shown on your V5C form. If you have not had a V5C in your name, you are not entitled to a car tax disc refund. Please visit the DVLA for further details.