Published on Wednesday 25 March 2020 in Van News
With the Covid-19 outbreak limiting your ability to get out of the house & work, a logical question to ask is what will happen if your car, van or pickup truck's MOT due date is on or after 30 March 2020. We'll answer this along with what things you need to do to keep your vehicle safe to drive.
The good news is that from the 30th March 2020, the Government has stated MOT due dates for vehicles including cars, pickup trucks, motorcycles & light vans will be extended by 6 months.
The Government has published separate guidance about what to do if your MOT due date is up to & including the 29th March 2020. So, let's take a look at both cases.
What To Do If Your MOT Is Due AFTER 30th March 2020
You won't need to do anything except keep your vehicle safe to drive. Your vehicle will be automatically given a 6-month MOT exemption extending your current MOT expiry date by 6 months.
Example: Say your vehicle's MOT was due to expire on the 3rd April 2020, this is now extended by 6 months to 3rd October 2020 & you'll need to get your MOT by this date.
Checking your MOT history: The Government makes it really easy to check your MOT history online to see when you have been given the 6-month exemption. It will not be updated straight away, so keep checking back because you will not get sent a paper exemption certificate by post.
What if my vehicle tax is due? If you need to update your vehicle tax, you will be able to tax your vehicle as soon as your vehicle's MOT due date has been updated to reflect the 6-month exemption.
What if my MOT was due before the 30th March 2020 & my vehicle did not pass? Unfortunately, your vehicle will not get an extension to its MOT due date & your vehicle will need to pass an MOT before you can drive it again - good news is that the Government is allowing MOT centres & garages to remain open, so you can still get an MOT if you need your vehicle for the following reasons:
Shopping for basic necessities - such as food or medicine - as infrequently as possible.
Medical need or helping to care for a vulnerable person.
Travel to work- only if needed.
How do I keep my vehicle safe to drive? The guidance here is that your vehicle must be safe to drive, because even if your MOT expiry date has been extended, it's possible your vehicle might be unsafe to drive. Be aware, that you can be fined up to £2,500, get banned & get 3 penalty points for driving a vehicle in a dangerous condition. So, if there is anything wrong with your vehicle, take it to get repaired at the nearest open garage because the Government has allowed them to stay open.
What To Do If Your MOT Is Due BEFORE 30th March 2020
The guidance is different if your MOT is due right now & it's broken up by circumstances. They are as follows:
If you or someone you live with shows symptoms of Covid-19: If your MOT runs out while you're at home because you or someone you live with has symptoms of Covid-19 & you're in self-isolation, book an MOT for your vehicle after your period of self-isolation is completed. The Department for Transport (DfT) is already working with insurers & the police to make sure you don't get punished for not being able to get an MOT.
If you are extremely vulnerable from Covid-19: If this is the case, you must not take your vehicle for its MOT. Once again, the Department for Transport (DfT) is already working with insurers & the police to make sure you don't get punished for not being able to get an MOT.
If you're not self-isolating: Go ahead & book your MOT test at any open test centre or garage if you're not self-isolating. MOT centres & garages are still open. If you're not self-isolating or vulnerable from Covid-19 you will still need an MOT.
If your vehicle tax runs out while you're self-isolating: You need to have a valid MOT (unless your vehicle is exempt) to renew your vehicle tax. In this case, the Government recommends that you should register your vehicle as off the road (SORN) if both of the following are happening:
Your MOT & vehicle tax are both due to run out.
You're not able to get your vehicle tested because you're self-isolating
When you no longer need to self-isolate: Remember, you must not drive your vehicle before you take it to its MOT. You will need to book an MOT test, & then tax it once you have the certificate.
Finally, a reminder about driving your vehicle if your MOT has run out - don't do it. If you get caught you can be prosecuted. The only exceptions to this rule is if you're driving your vehicle to get it repaired at a garage or to a pre-booked MOT test. If you're not doing either of those things, don't drive your vehicle without an MOT.