Currently reading: Coronavirus: UK drivers granted six-month MOT exemption
Roadworthy vehicles can be driven for essential purposes without an MOT certificate from 30 March
Felix Page Autocar writer
News
2 mins read
25 March 2020

Vehicle owners will be granted a six-month exemption from MOT testing, in an effort to keep essential workers on the road during the Covid-19 outbreak.

The exemption comes into effect from 30 March, but the Department for Transport has warned that vehicles should only be used “to travel to work where this absolutely cannot be done from home, or shop for necessities”. 

MOT tests had already been suspended for heavy vehicles – including lorries, buses and trailers – last week, but the halting of roadworthiness testing has now been expanded to include cars, vans and motorcycles. 

Vehicles must be kept in a safe, roadworthy condition, and garages are allowed to remain open to carry out essential repair work. 

The official announcement says drivers “can be prosecuted if driving unsafe vehicles”, but it is unclear whether the usual financial penalty for driving without an MOT – up to £1000 in some cases – is still in place. 

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “Allowing this temporary exemption from vehicle testing will enable vital services such as deliveries to continue, frontline workers to get to work, and people to get essential food and medicine.

“Safety is key, which is why garages will remain open for essential repair work.”

The universal MOT exemption will be in place for 12 months, but valid MOT certificates remain a legal requirement until it comes into effect on 30 March, and tests are still being carried out. 

The cancellation of MOT testing is the latest adjustment made by the Department for Transport in light of the government’s decision to enforce a widespread stay-at-home directive. Practical driving tests have been postponed for three months and London’s Congestion and ULEZ charges have been halted

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Comments
7

25 March 2020

Seems a sensible move, but again we're not thinking straight. Not sure if a penalty still applies to those driving without a MOT and fines up to £1000?

So we have police who's numbers are already reduced due to self-isolation. Those that remain have now to deal with their normal business as well as dispersing crowds of more than two people, making sure people obay what is effectively lockdown laws and whatever else this crazy situation brings up on us.

Just who is going to dish out these fines? A vehicle that has just gone over it's MOT period is hardly a priority in the world we currently find ourselves in.

25 March 2020

By all means grant a limited extension, 3 months at the very most, but 12 months is plain stupid, not only will it potentially allow dangerous vehicles on the road for a year, it will kill the business of MOT test centres and potentially cost jobs, on top of the job losses we ll see because of the virus, how will that help the recovery after we ve beaten the it ? Just another governemnt F up.

25 March 2020
typos1 wrote:

By all means grant a limited extension, 3 months at the very most, but 12 months is plain stupid, not only will it potentially allow dangerous vehicles on the road for a year, it will kill the business of MOT test centres and potentially cost jobs, on top of the job losses we ll see because of the virus, how will that help the recovery after we ve beaten the it ? Just another governemnt F up.

As we progress through this highly charged times, please remember, as and when the virus peaks, then this year thing might be reduced,  I do agree it's too long, but, the powers that be are just as all at Sea as us.

25 March 2020
Peter Cavellini wrote:

typos1 wrote:

By all means grant a limited extension, 3 months at the very most, but 12 months is plain stupid, not only will it potentially allow dangerous vehicles on the road for a year, it will kill the business of MOT test centres and potentially cost jobs, on top of the job losses we ll see because of the virus, how will that help the recovery after we ve beaten the it ? Just another governemnt F up.

As we progress through this highly charged times, please remember, as and when the virus peaks, then this year thing might be reduced,  I do agree it's too long, but, the powers that be are just as all at Sea as us.

This current government is far more "all at sea" than us, theyre useless.

25 March 2020

Please get the facts right....it is not an exemption it is an extension to the expiry date by six months. Vehicles with an MOT expired prior to 30th March are still unroadworthy until tested. Vehicles due to expire in April will need to be tested again in October.

25 March 2020

This is actually a bit terrifying. Plenty of folk don't give a toss about maintaining their vehicle in roadworthy condition, and only the threat of being fined for having no MOT keeps them in check. Yes it's just an extension, but still...

25 March 2020

Must admit my car's MOT was booked for 24th March, so I went ahead with it. I was concerned that without an MOT the car couldn't be taxed and might have needed to be declared SORN. 

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