You’ll usually have to register a car or any other vehicle as soon as you’ve:

  • bought it
  • built it
  • rebuilt or altered it
  • imported it

You do this by filling in forms and sending them to DVLA. The forms you have to send depend on your circumstances.

DVLA may need to inspect your vehicle to:

  • make sure the vehicle exists, has been assembled into a complete vehicle and the log book (V5C) is in your name
  • update their records because of changes you’ve made to the vehicle

They will send you a letter if they need to do this. You won’t have to pay a fee.

Use the different registration schemes for the motor trade if you’re a vehicle manufacturer, importer or VAT-registered trader.