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Death of the UK car tax disc

 

Posted on 29 September 2014

After 93 years of adorning the windscreens of Britain's motorists, car tax discs are being scrapped but the changes to vehicle excise duty or ‘car tax’ as it’s more commonly known, aren’t as simple as just throwing away our tax discs!

So, what’s changing?

Well, let’s firstly address what isn’t changing – motorists will still have to pay for their car tax despite not having the decorative disc displayed in their windscreen. However, the DVLA now has a digital record of payments and so a paper tax disc is no longer necessary as proof. Number-plate recognition cameras will track each vehicle on the road and send an alert if they spot a car with no record of having paid the duty.

Also from Wednesday 1 October, the transfer of the tax from buyer to seller when you sell a car is being scrapped. Those who are selling their vehicle will get a refund of any tax they've paid in advance, although only for full calendar months left outstanding.

Be warned, even if you're not due a refund you must report the sale of your car to the DVLA as failure to do so means facing a fine of up to £1,000. You'll also remain responsible for taxing the vehicle you no longer own and you'll have to pay any fines the buyer may clock up!

Anyone buying a car will need to tax their new vehicle before driving it home after tomorrow.

Another upcoming change taking effect from 1 November is the way in which you pay for your vehicle tax. At the moment, car tax needs to be paid up front for either six or twelve months, but as of 1 November you'll be able to pay by monthly direct debit over 12 months plus a 5 per cent additional charge for those who choose to pay bi-annually or monthly (which is better than the currently applied 10 per cent surcharge to the six-month tax discs!).

So, what do you do with your car disc now? Well you could always give it to tax disc fanatic Jude Currie

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