Look out for new changes when buy­ing a tax disc

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - COMMUNITY -

THE Driver and Ve­hi­cle Li­cens­ing Agency (DVLA) web­site is one of the eas­i­est to use. It was one of the first that I used for on­line trans­ac­tions. It’s very sim­ple and straight­for­ward, and I per­son­ally have a lot of con­fi­dence in it.

As a con­stituency, Che­sham & Amer­sham has a high num­ber of ve­hi­cle own­ers. The 2011 Cen­sus showed that my con­stituency is num­ber 11 in the list of house­holds with three or more cars or vans. It is 16th in the list of those with four or more cars/vans.

Some of those ve­hi­cle own­ers may be un­sure about the changes which the DVLA is in­tro­duc­ing from Oc­to­ber 1, 2014. The pa­per tax disc is be­ing with­drawn and, from that date, ve­hi­cle own­ers won’t have to dis­play it.

Ve­hi­cle own­ers still have to pay the tax and the DVLA will con­tinue to is­sue re­minders when the tax is due. The po­lice and other agen­cies will be able to check elec­tron­i­cally whether a ve­hi­cle is taxed, in­sured or has an MoT cer­tifi­cate.

After Oc­to­ber 1, there will be the op­tion of pay­ing the ve­hi­cle tax in in­stal­ments, by set­ting up a di­rect debit. It was pre­vi­ously pos­si­ble to pay ei­ther an­nu­ally or for six months, but un­der the new sys­tem it will also be pos­si­ble to pay monthly. (I un­der­stand there is a small fee for pay­ing by in­stal­ments.) Di­rect debit will not ap­ply to first reg­is­tra­tion ve­hi­cles or to ve­hi­cles in fleet schemes.

If you are buy­ing a used car, you will have to pay the tax your­self, im­me­di­ately, be­cause the pre­vi­ous owner will not be able to trans­fer the un­used months of paid tax when the ve­hi­cle is sold.

The pre­vi­ous owner can, though, get a re­fund for any full cal­en­dar months which are left un­used. The DVLA will au­to­mat­i­cally send out a re­fund when the owner in­forms them that the ve­hi­cle has been sold or scrapped. Sell­ers could face a fine if they do not tell the DVLA about the sale.

Ch­eryl Gil­lan MP for Che­sham & Amer­sham

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