Press release

DVLA announce plans to cut red tape by removing insurance check when taxing a vehicle

Roads Minister Stephen Hammond unveils how motorists will benefit by removal of insurance check when taxing a vehicle.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Tax disc image

Motorists will benefit from no longer having to provide a motor insurance certificate when buying a tax disc under plans unveiled today (15 October 2012) by Roads Minister Stephen Hammond.

The red tape cutting plans mean that around an extra 600,000 motorists a year will be able to tax their car online. It also means that millions of motorists will no longer have to search for their insurance certificate if they tax their car at the Post Office.

Roads Minster Stephen Hammond said:

We are committed to getting rid of unnecessary red tape. There is absolutely no benefit in making motorists prove they have insurance when they buy a tax disc now that we regularly check existing databases for insurance under Continuous Insurance Enforcement rules.

These proposals will make the whole process quicker, easier and cheaper.

The proposal has been made possible by new checks of existing databases for insurance under Continuous Insurance Enforcement rules. The DVLA’s records are compared regularly with the Motor Insurance Database (MID) to identify registered keepers of vehicles that appear to have no insurance.

Ashton West, Chief Executive at MIB said:

Motor insurance remains a legal requirement and this consultation by DVLA recognises the value and importance of the insurance records held centrally on the MID. The introduction of Continuous Insurance Enforcement last year 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 proposals to be made now, which will bring benefits to millions of motorists.

The consultation starts today and closes on 26 November 2012.

Notes to editors

Motorists must ensure that they have appropriate motor insurance in place.

The Continuous Insurance Enforcement (CIE) scheme to tackle uninsured motorists was launched in June 2011. Under the scheme it is an offence to be the keeper of an uninsured vehicle unless it is declared off the road with DVLA. Information is cross checked between the Motor Insurance Database (MID) and DVLA keeper records.

Under CIE keepers of vehicles which appear to be uninsured are sent reminder letters. Those who take no action receive a fixed penalty notice of £100, followed by enforcement action – wheelclamping, impounding and ultimately prosecution by the courts (the maximum fine in Court is £1,000).

For the offence of driving without insurance the police can offer a fixed penalty of £200 plus six penalty points, or prosecution (maximum fine of £5,000), discretionary disqualification and mandatory endorsement of between six and eight penalty points. Since 2005 the police have had the power to seize uninsured vehicles. In 2011 they seized 140,000 vehicles.

Drivers and owners can check their vehicle is on the Motor Insurance Database.

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Published 15 October 2012