Having a motor vehicle is a big responsibility and making sure you keep this legal and safe is important. Within the UK, there are various things that you need to be aware of as non-compliance to the laws will have very little sympathy from the local authorities. There are 3 main things that you are required to be able to demonstrate or complete. This includes having the appropriate level of insurance (or if not using the vehicle, declaring this to the DVLA by completing a SORN), ensuring it has the correct level of tax, and ensuring the car is safe in terms of MOT checklist and other regular check-ups.
Let’s look at these factors in more detail.
Every time you drive your car, it is your own responsibility to make sure it is safe. This includes a car that you may not own. Checks should be completed on a regular basis which include oil and water levels, lights and tyres.
Nowadays, most cars have the technology to let you know if there is an issue. For example, the dashboard will let you know if you need to top up your oil or if you have a tyre that is underinflated. This shouldn’t be relied upon 100% though, as ultimately it is still the driver’s responsibility to check this.
MOTs are in place to support safety and drivers must have this completed annually by an approved mechanic. These are not required for new cars within the first 3 years on the road. Not having an approved MOT where applicable will invalidate any insurance policy you have in place.
There are many different types of insurance policies that driver have available to take out. Depending on the ownership of the vehicle and what it is being used for will determine what insurance cover you need.
For instance, people that are using the vehicle for business, must have a level of business insurance cover (which includes commuting to work) and people using the vehicle for personal use will have fully comprehensive or third party, fire and theft cover.
On the other hand, if you are a mechanic then you will require motor trade insurance for cars so that you can drive them and they are covered for any accident.
You can use websites such as Quotezone in order to understand the different levels of cover that is required and take out a policy.
The laws have been changing on this in the past few years and depending on the emissions your car omits will determine the car tax you require. Some people may not even require a level of car tax. You can find the information out on different tax rates from the DVLA and on their website. Don’t forget also challenges around inheritance taxes if you own an expensive classic car – learn more at https://taxfyle.com/blog/inheritance-tax-explained/.
It is important that you keep yourself up to date with these requirements and any changes to the law will require your compliance to. The DVLA website is a good place to start and has options to ask questions for any queries that you may have.