Do I need to register my tax exempt car with the DVLA?

My car is exempt from road tax but I forgot to register it this year. I have moved house and was hospitalised earlier this year. I didn't receive any notification from the DVLA to remind me to register my vehicle (might have crossed over due to my move but certainly didn't receive any emails).

On Saturday July 1st my car was clamped outside my house and a large flyer put on the windscreen saying 'untaxed vehicle'. I payed the £100 fine immediately, registered the vehicle, again to be told this vehicle is exempt from road tax. On July 8th I received a letter from CCS Collect (a debt collector) asking for £80 as a penalty from the DVLA. I did notify the DVLA of a change of address early on in the year and paid the fee for a new driving licence. I assumed (wrongly) that their systems would be able to update my account for all their other departments.

I have compiled a letter to the DVLA highlighting the above. Is this the best way forward? I am very reluctant to engage with the debt company and feeling angry that I am being asked to pay £180 for not registering a car that is exempt from road tax.

Asked on 17 July 2023 by Pip Packer

Answered by David Ross
Unfortunately, although your vehicle is VED exempt it still has to be logged with the DVLA in order for the tax-exempt status to be applied and the vehicle used on the public road. The vehicle and driving licence elements of the DVLA are not connected in this way, so you are obliged to notify them of changes to the status of your vehicle and your licence where they apply.

You can appeal in writing to the DVLA, but given the circumstances it is unlikely it will be successful.
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