Car tax disc changes: Make sure you know the new rules from 1 October or risk £1,000 fine

Research shows 40 per cent of drivers are unsure about the DVLA's changes

Car tax laws are changing in little over a month but with more than two thirds of drivers unaware of the new rules, millions could be risking fines of up to £1,000.

The paper tax disc is being scrapped after 93 years on 1 October, although tax will still need to be paid, and it will no longer be transferred when buying a second-hand vehicle.

A poll of more than 1,000 drivers found that 40 per cent were completely unaware of the impending changes and of those who were, half were unsure when they were coming in and many were not planning to find out more.

Research by a financial advice and comparison website found that one in three drivers claim they struggle to pay for their vehicle tax and many resort to overdrafts, borrowing from family friends or payday loans.

Anyone buying a second hand car will have to pay more for vehicle tax after the DVLA abolishes transfers.

Sellers who notify the authority will automatically get a full refund for the time left on the disc but buyers will have to pay for new tax - £175 a year on average.

People selling their car are expected to tell the DVLA straight away of the change of ownership or face fines of up to £1,000.

Among the more welcome changes is the ability to pay via direct debit instead of the year or six-month options currently available.

But drivers selecting monthly payments will pay 5 per cent extra each year on top of the average annual cost of tax and the millions of people who pay with a credit card will be hit with a £2.50 surcharge.

The DVLA has revealed a list of personalised licence plates it has banned for being in ‘poor taste’ The DVLA will no longer allow tax to be transferred to new owners of second-hand cars Hannah Maundrell, the editor of money.co.uk, said direct debits would help people who genuinely forget to renew their tax and end up being stung with a hefty fine.

“I suspect the new system may experience some teething problems so drivers really need to make sure they're on top of their game,” she added.

“Just because you don't have to display a tax disc doesn't mean you can get away with not paying it, if anything you're more likely to be caught now than before.”

Announcing the changes after last year’s Autumn Statement, the Department for Transport said the DVLA has a digital record of payments and a paper tax disc is no longer necessary as proof.

Most inspectors patrolling roads use automatic number plate readers (ANPR) instead of examining existing discs.

More than 99 per cent of motorists tax their vehicles on time.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Stores Keeper

£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...

Recruitment Genius: Claims Administrator

£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developer - C# / ASP.NET / SQL

£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before