MOT test warning: Thousands of drivers ‘could face a fine’ today as extensions end

MOT test warning: Thousands of drivers ‘could face a fine’ today as extensions end

02/03/2021

DVSA explains 2018 MOT test changes

The MOT six-month test extension came to an end over the weekend with hundreds of road users possibly unaware of the changes. Data from Confused.com has revealed almost one in 10 road users do not know when their MOT is due for renewal due to the new extensions.

This means many drivers may be continuing to drive with invalid certificates in place which can lead to heavy penalties.

Alex Kindred, spokesperson for Confused.com said renewal “cannot slip from drivers’ minds.

He said: “The six-month MOT exemption was a weight off drivers’ shoulders, particularly for those still relying on their car to carry out essential work or pick up essential items.

“But renewal cannot slip from drivers minds.

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“According to our research, nearly one in ten (9%) of drivers told us that they don’t know when their MOT is due for renewal.

“The last date you could claim your extension was the 31st July 2020. If your extension is [due] and you have not yet rearranged your MOT, you could face a fine.

“With the extension over and MOTs due, our guide provides some simple checks to keep your car in good nick, to help it pass its MOT first time.”

The six-month extension was put into place at the end of March 2020 as many garages closed their doors due to the pandemic.

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The extensions were offered out to drivers up to 31 July meaning some were still valid until the 31 January 2021.

However, the MOT extension scheme has not been continued over the existing lockdown with garages remaining open as an essential service.

GOV.UK confirms drivers who were initially due their MOT after 31 July 2020 must book their MOT as usual.

They also urge drivers they need to secure a valid MOT by their extension date or could face penalties for driving illegally.

The Government warns drivers can be fined up to £1,000 for driving a vehicle without a valid certificate,

It adds drivers cannot even park their vehicle on the road if an MOT has run out and could be prosecuted if caught. 

The only exceptions are drivers can still travel somewhere to get repaired or to a pre-arranged MOT appointment.

However, road users could also be penalised up to £2,500 if their vehicle is considered to be in a dangerous condition.

This could be a more pressing issue for many road users who have not had their car tested for over a year and a half.

However, Stuart Janes, chairman of the Independent Garage Association has warned the Government may have to think about another MOT extension.

Mr James was previously against another extension but now claims the Government may need to “consider everything” under the current circumstances.

He confirmed he had been contacted by a small number of garages calling for another extension to reduce interaction between customers and mechanics.

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