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king_olaf

DVLA No Insurance Fine

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HI All,

 

After a bit of advice please.

 

some background. - In March 2017 I had a car that had a 2nd engine failure on it - after the garage inspected the car, and advised on costs to fix, I decided not to go ahead with it. The garage agreed to take the car in lieu of any costs incurred as part of them diagnosing the issue. I should add that the garage is run by my next door neighbour and has a very good reputation in the area. I left the V5 with them (though stupidly didn't do the whole transferred to trader/dealer section)

 

Roll on to the start of March this year when I recieve notice of a £350 fine for "being the registered keeper of a vehicle that does not meet insurance requirements". The offence was committed in July 17This was dealt with under the single justice procedure in Bristol. All correspondence related to this were sent to my old address where the V5 was logged to, they must have done a search at some point to get my current address.

 

I have now been to Portsmouth Magistrates court to do a Statutory declaration which was accepted. I now have a new court date in Southampton on May 1st which I have already stated I will be pleading not guilty.

 

On speaking to my neighbour, the car was taken on by their auto electrician who has since fixed the car and is back on the road. He has said he didn't get the car back on the road to August 17, after the date of the offence. The garage have stated that the car was always kept off the public highway.Just to throw something else into the mix, I didn't realise until looking at Bank statements recently that I was still paying Tax monthly on the vehicle (so at least SORN Doesn't come into this I guess)

 

I have a letter from the garage stating that I left the vehicle with them, can also provide proof of insurance on my new vehicle etc too. Just had a letter come through today re: the new hearing date. This letter states all the various legislation etc, and that I can settle this for £100 fixed penalty notice to avoid court.

 

Can I get advice on what to do here please? I am certainly guilty of naivety here in not getting the V5 properly filled in etc. I have been driving for 18 years, never had a time of driving without tax/insurance etc - I drive 700 - 900 miles per week as I have a long commute so rely on my car a great deal.

 

your thoughts are greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks

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OK, you've said yourself that you've made mistakes and I'm not about to berate you for those.

 

However. If you have a dated letter from the garage saying that they were keeping the vehicle in lieu (if you don't get one (on headed paper)) or at least a letter stating when they took the vehicle from you.

 

This will give you a defence. Albeit not to not updating the DVLA, but that's not what you've been charged with (that may come back to bite you later).

 

 

As long as you can show the court that you were not the keeper, then you are not guilty of the offence as charged. It really is as simple as that. So that letter from the garage is vital to your case.

 

 

The Garage (99% of the time at least) will have it's own insurance for the vehicle. Their 'Traders Policy' *should* have been updated with your (old) vehicle registration, but if the DVLA are claiming that it wasn't insured, it sounds like that wasn't done. But that's not your problem.


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The letter from the garage is very carefully worded, but it does state that they took possession of the car in March 18, and is on headed paper and signed by the director of the garage.

 

Yes, I have been pretty naive on this one - very much a lesson learnt, especially having to take a day of work to go to court for the Stat Dec and now take another for the hearing.

 

Is it possible to speak to the DVLA prosecuting team beforehand? The letter only gives a phone number for a payments line to pay the £100 Penalty notice.

 

Do you think it's likely the DVLA would try to bring up the point about incorrect address? That would be pretty spiteful (though I have read some horror stories on the DVLA so anything is possible I guess)

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One thing to add - when I originally spoke to the court team in Bristol, they stated that the offence occurred in Southampton (Near my old address funnily enough). the garage have stated that the car did not move from there until August, after the date of the alleged "offence".

 

I'm wondering if there was an error somewhere there - They couldn't even confirm if it was done via ANPR or not (though i'm 99% sure it must have been)

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The letter from the garage is very carefully worded, but it does state that they took possession of the car in March 18, and is on headed paper and signed by the director of the garage.

 

Yes, I have been pretty naive on this one - very much a lesson learnt, especially having to take a day of work to go to court for the Stat Dec and now take another for the hearing.

 

Is it possible to speak to the DVLA prosecuting team beforehand? The letter only gives a phone number for a payments line to pay the £100 Penalty notice.

 

Do you think it's likely the DVLA would try to bring up the point about incorrect address? That would be pretty spiteful (though I have read some horror stories on the DVLA so anything is possible I guess)

 

Can I just double check dates here. In your original post you said March '17, in your post above you've said March '18.

 

The DVLA don't usually move at anything even approaching snails pace, so I'm assuming that 2017 is the correct date?

 

 

The key phrase in that letter from the garage is that they "took possession". I'd be fairly confident that that's all you'll need. The vehicle was no longer your responsibility so you're not liable for any insurance or lack thereof. An oversight on your part meant that you'd inadvertently continued to pay VEL for the vehicle, but beyond that, not your problem.

 

 

I don't think that they'll bring up (in court at least) the change of ownership (V5C wise) as that's not why you're there.

 

One thing to add - when I originally spoke to the court team in Bristol, they stated that the offence occurred in Southampton (Near my old address funnily enough). the garage have stated that the car did not move from there until August, after the date of the alleged "offence".

 

I'm wondering if there was an error somewhere there - They couldn't even confirm if it was done via ANPR or not (though i'm 99% sure it must have been)

 

 

It's not done with ANPR unless it's been/being driven on the road. DVLA in conjuction with MIB (no, not Will Smith) compare insured vehicles with registered vehicles and with SORN'd vehicles. Those that don't match are looked at to see why and then the DVLA take it from there.

 

If the vehicle was registered in Southampton, then technically, that's where the offence took place (even if it wasn't your offence) :thumb:


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Apologies re: dates - the car was left at the garage is March 2017.

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If the OP was still the 'Registered Keeper' in July 2017, that is who would have committed the offence, although someone else may have been the 'Keeper' at that time.

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I guess the question would be if the magistrate would look at it in a black and white fashion or not. From a technical perspective, yes I agree you are correct, i guess it depends if mitigation is allowed and accepted

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A letter from the garage may well help in mitigation, but it is not a defence as suggested above. Unfortunately the insurance was still your responsibility as the 'Registered Keeper'.

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Unfortunately the fact that you continued to pay the tax on the vehicle negates the majority of the defences that have been put forward.

 

The offence for which you are being brought to court is simply being the registered keeper of a taxed vehicle that is not insured. This does not have to be on the road, indeed it could have been scrapped or taken abroad, it makes no difference.

 

Sorry, my personal opinion is that paying the £100 penalty will be your cheapest option.


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The offence for which you are being brought to court is simply being the registered keeper of a taxed vehicle that is not insured.

 

But the OP is not guilty of that. RTA 1988. Section 144A. Paragraph 4 4(a) & 4(b).

 

Because the OP was no longer the owner of the vehicle, the garages traders policy would have covered it, even if the garage hadn't notified the MIB or their insurers.

 

Whilst it *might* be in the t&c's of the traders policy that the trader should notify their insurers of stock vehicles, I've never met one yet that 100% does.


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Dragonfly, I must contest your assertion that the vehicle would be covered by the traders insurance policy. In post #1 it was stated that the vehicle was taken over by their auto electrician, so would not be under the trader's control.

 

Unfortunately the OP has failed to take the actions which would have protected him from the liability, ie complied with the requirements on change of ownership/keeper registration.

 

I maintain that he would be well to take the £100 hit as being the cheapest option. Any mitigation given at Magistrates Court will be negated by his having continued to pay the tax monthly for some time after his insurance was concelled (no doubt on being transferred to the replacement vehicle) and the court may well think that their time is being wasted when he could have settled in a timely manner.


My time as a Police Officer and subsequently time working within the Motor Trade gives me certain insights into the problems that consumers may encounter.

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I must admit that I missed that part about the auto electrician. I (wrongly) assumed that it was under control of the trader. :oops:

 

That does indeed change things rather dramatically.


We could use your help

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING

 

 

Please note that my posts are my opinion only and should not be taken as any kind of legal advice.

 

If I've helped you at all, please feel free to click on the little star under my posts and leave feedback :)

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Thank you to everyone for their comments and apologies for the late response, it's been a manic weekend.

 

When I left the car with the garage, I had no idea it was going to be passed over to the Auto Electrician. As far as I was aware they were potentially going to strip a few parts off it and then scrap the car.

 

The car was left with the garage in March 17. The "Offence" was committed in July 17. The Auto electrician has said he didn't get the car back on the road until August 17. He has shown me (and I have a copy of) his insurance certificate commencing from the middle of August. Whether this changes anything I don't know - I am going to speak to the garage owner (my neighbour) this week to see if it was added to his Traders insurance at any point.

Edited by king_olaf
Addition to post.

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Unfortunately you have just confirmed the offence.

 

The vehicle was not insured in July 2017, but you have previously stated that you had continued to pay the tax.

 

Sorry, slam dunk for the DVLA


My time as a Police Officer and subsequently time working within the Motor Trade gives me certain insights into the problems that consumers may encounter.

I have no legal qualifications.

If you have found my post helpful, please enhance my reputation by clicking on the Heart. Thank you

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Hi Gick,

 

Thanks for your response. I inadvertently continued to pay tax - I am pretty lax at looking at my bank statements and didn't even notice it - DVLA advice is that once a vehicle is transferred then tax direct debit payments will stop. Yes, completely agree that I should have checked and that could be my ultimate downfall here, I was acting in good faith (never again!). I simply went and purchased another car, transferred my insurance over to this vehicle and carried on my merry way. A £100 penalty notice seems quite hefty for being a naive idiot.

 

One other question - i know if I pay the £100 penalty notice it will be done and dusted, no criminal record etc - if I go to court and lose the case, will this be classed as a criminal record? my place of work runs a DBS check on us every 3 years and mine is due to come up soon.

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Just to give everyone an update and to close this off - After discussion with the Garage, they agreed to cover the £100 penalty notice and this has now been paid to the DVLA.

 

Thanks to everyone for their comments and advice on this thread, very much appreciated.

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