SOCIAL media is being blamed for an avalanche of misinformation over the government’s changes to the vehicle tax disc effective for 1 October 2014.
Ill informed commentators are fuelling confusion over the abandonment of the paper car windscreen in favour of electronic records tracked through the UK’s nationwide network of numberplate recognition cameras, says road safety charity the Institute of Advanced Motorists.
It points out that SME small fleet owners will still need to buy vehicle tax to keep any vehicle on the road and will still receive a reminder from the DVLA.
However, now they will be able to pay by continuous direct debit, eliminating risk of forgetting to pay and driving with an out-of-date disc.
The direct debit will continue as long as there is a valid MOT for the vehicle. Owners can apply online to tax vehicles using the 16-digit reference code from their vehicle tax renewal reminder (V11) or 11 digit reference number from the vehicle’s log book (V5C).
One major change the new road tax rules has created is that vehicle tax can no longer be transferred with the vehicle when sold – often an added incentive when purchasing a vehicle.
After 1 October the owner of a sold vehicle, who has notified the DLVA, will automatically receive a refund for any full months remaining on that vehicle tax.
Vehicle buyers will now always have to buy new tax when purchasing either a new or used vehicle.
Simon Best, IAM chief executive, said: “As with all new systems, it will take a little time to get used to. But the move to allow people to set up a direct debit will mean greater peace of mind for many, so your vehicle will never be untaxed.
“However, moving more of these processes online will make things very difficult for those without regular internet access – as ever, the poor and elderly could lose out.
“And it will be interesting to see if some people think that without a visible tax disc it will be easier simply not to buy one. We’ll see in time how effective this has been in catching those who avoid paying.”
For more information visit the government website
Read more on the abolition of the tax disc
Click here for Torn tax disc hits the bin