45% of used car buyers unwittingly commit vehicle tax evasion

18 Dec 2015 | NEWS

Survey reveals lack of understanding regarding change of ownership rules for vehicle tax

One year on from the abolition of paper tax discs and a new survey from cap hpi, provider of HPI Check, reveals 45% of motorists don’t fully understand the new vehicle tax rules and are unwittingly committing tax evasion. On 1 October 2014, the Driving Vehicle and Licensing Agency (DVLA) updated the rules on vehicle tax, meaning tax can no longer be passed on with a vehicle when selling, or transferring it. cap hpi’s findings show that many used car buyers still believe they can transfer tax or have ‘grace’ days to give them time to buy vehicle tax for their new car.

Under the new rules, the buyer must get vehicle tax, before taking the vehicle on the road. 17% of drivers wrongly believe that although vehicle tax cannot be passed on, the new owner is given 14 days grace to purchase tax for the vehicle. A further 16% mistakenly assume that vehicle tax is transferred for the remainder of the month that they buy the car in. The remaining 12% of drivers believe that any remaining vehicle tax can be included in the sale of the vehicle and transferred to the new owner; however, this is not the case.

Dealers urged to check vehicle history

Used car sellers are responsible for notifying the DVLA when they sell their vehicle which can now be done online at They will receive a refund for any full months left on the vehicle tax and any Direct Debit will be cancelled. Failure to report a change in ownership could result in fines and sellers will still be liable for any speeding or parking fines that the new owner incurs, as well as being out of pocket for the vehicle tax on a car they don’t even own any more. Buyers must get new vehicle tax using the V5C/2 as soon as the sale is complete and before driving away.

Neil Hodson, Deputy Managing Director for cap hpi, comments, “It’s worrying to think that as many as 45% of used car buyers don’t understand the new tax rules and could be driving around untaxed. This is a serious issue as driving a vehicle without tax may invalidate your motor insurance. Failure to tax vehicles can result in penalties through court prosecutions, wheel-clamping and/or the removal of your vehicle. Sellers could also face fines if they don’t inform the DVLA when they sell their vehicle.”

“The HPI Check offers used car buyers the peace of mind they need to be sure that they’re buying a vehicle without a hidden history. Once they find and HPI Check their dream purchase, it’s time to get it taxed.”

The HPI Check includes a mileage check against the National Mileage Register as standard, now with over 200 million mileage readings. HPI also confirms whether a vehicle is currently recorded as stolen with the police, has outstanding finance against it or has been written off, making it a great way for consumers to protect themselves from fraudsters looking to make a fast profit. In addition, the HPI Check offers a £30,000 guarantee in the event of the information it provides being inaccurate, offering added financial peace of mind to used car buyers.

Jim Ingleby
A member of cap hpi’s Marketing department. On a quest to delight customers with engaging and informative business content.
0113 222 203

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