Feb 10, 2021
When your car is over three years old, over four years old in Northern Ireland, you are bound by law to have an MOT test carried out on your car to ensure it’s in roadworthy condition and meets the criteria set out by the Ministry of Transport. When your car passes the MOT test, you will receive a certificate, while it is recommended you keep hold of your paper copy for certain circumstances, the DVSA keeps an electronic and paper record of your test certificate.
One of the most important times when you will need the MOT certificate for your car is when you’re selling. A prospective buyer will want to see the most recent MOT certificate as evidence of the car being roadworthy at the time of purchase and will also want to know what work has been carried out or what problems the MOT signalled as needing repaired down the line. The public cannot access the digital MOT records of just any car.
Keeping the paper copy of your MOT certificate safe will also be important in the event of an accident or even an insurance claim. It’s important to note that depending on your insurance provider, the claim can be affected if the paper certificate is not present meaning you could lose out on money especially in the event of an injury.
Thankfully, if you have lost or damaged your current MOT paper certificate, it can be replaced and is available at any MOT centre, however you need to provide the original test number or your V5C document reference number. There is likely to be a £10 fee for this replacement.
No you cannot drive without a valid MOT as in the UK, it’s the law that your vehicle must undergo an MOT test every year once it passes three years old or four years old in Northern Ireland. The only time you can ever legally drive without a valid MOT is when you’re taking it to the test centre or to have repairs carried out.
If you don’t have a valid MOT test you also can’t renew your tax, it is also illegal to drive on a public road without car tax. You can check your MOT due date on the Gov.uk site.
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