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The Importance of SORN

3rd May, 2012

If you think that the DVLA is not concerned with that untaxed and unused registered lorry sitting down at the depot as long as you keep it off public roads, then you might want to think again.

Since 20 June 2011, all vehicles registered in Great Britain, regardless of whether they are on public roads or not, must be taxed or, alternatively, declared to be the subject of a Statutory Off Road Notice (“SORN”).

The new provisions apply equally to PSVs and LGVs.

What is a SORN?

A SORN is an official declaration to the DVLA by the registered keeper of a vehicle that the vehicle is “off the road” and is therefore exempt from Vehicle Excise Duty.

You do not need to make a SORN for a registered vehicle that is kept off-road if:-

  • you no longer have the vehicle and the DVLA have been informed;
  • the insurance company has written off the vehicle;
  • if the vehicle is untaxed for less than 14 days; or
  • the vehicles was last taxed before 1998 and has not been taxed since.

What are the penalties for failing to make a SORN or making a false SORN?

Vehicle owners found or suspected to be in breach of the new regulations will firstly be issued with an Insurance Advisory Letter advising them that they must tax their vehicle or complete a SORN.

Owners who do not comply with this letter risk being issued with a £100 fixed penalty notice or, if the offence continues and prosecution becomes necessary, the owner could face a fine up to £1,000.

Where an owner has completed a SORN but continues to use or store the vehicle on public roads, the owner could face a fine up to £5,000 and imprisonment.

The new policy will run alongside existing offences and enforcement measures currently in place for untaxed vehicles.

How do I make a SORN?

A SORN must be completed by the registered keeper of the untaxed vehicle which is being stored off-road.

The registered keeper must return the vehicle’s tax disc to the DVLA and complete a SORN using a V14 application form, which is available from the Post Office or from www.direct.gov.uk/vehicletaxrefund.

How long does the SORN last?

The SORN lasts for up to 12 month.  Where an owner wishes to keep the vehicle off the road and untaxed beyond the 12 month period, he or she must renew the SORN before the 5th day of the month before the 12 month expiry date of the SORN.

 

For further information, please contact Tim Culpin on 01244 405533 or by email at [email protected].

 

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