Don’t Forget To Pay Your Car Tax

Thu 30th Jan 2020

Drivers across the UK are being warned to make sure they have paid for their car tax as the UK Government continues to lose almost £94m a year in lost revenues.

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) introduced the paperless car tax system in 2014 and in that final year of having to display tax discs in the window of your car there were 693,270 enforcement actions taken. Now for the fourth year in succession, that figure has gone beyond one million, with the decision to save money by moving the system online appearing to have backfired.

While the DVLA points out that the new system allows them to take action against the same vehicle more than once, it is likely that the predicted savings of £14 million a year has been swallowed by the lost revenues from those who either forget or choose not to pay their car tax under the new system.

Duncan McLure Fisher, chief executive of MotorEasy, who published the latest figures from DVLA data said that the loss of revenues could be behind the poor state of the nation’s roads.

He said: “Modernising the way car tax is handled had to come at some point, but it seems overall there's been a bit of a bump in the road – with a large increase in the number of people not paying last year compared to 2014.

“This means an exercise designed to save money on printed discs has resulted in a huge loss in tax revenue for the Government, which has a knock-on effect on public services such as road maintenance. 

“If fines have doubled you can be sure the number of untaxed vehicles has also grown significantly.

He added: “It may be that people think they can avoid paying vehicle tax because they don't have to display a disc, or because they don't have that physical reminder of their expiration date.”

Enforcement actions dished out for lack of vehicle tax 

2013: 693,270

2014: 623,508

2015: 901,533

2016: 1,099,216

2017: 1,373,184

2018: 1,328,056

2019: 1,222,053 (Figure up until 21/11/19)

Source: MotorEasy FOI request to the DVLA