Making it easier for motorists to replace a lost MOT certificate

In 2018, more than 636,000 duplicate MOT certificates were issued in Great Britain, about 2% of all MOT tests carried out each year. Duplicates are issued when vehicle owners lose or damage the original, and need a new one – perhaps when selling a car. The MOT team at the DVSA has been working hard to make that process simpler.

The DVSA launched a new service on 8 May 2019 in an effort to take the stress out of losing an MOT certificate by allowing vehicle owners to:

  • view and save their MOT certificate as a PDF
  • print their MOT certificateThe replace MOT certificate service can be used 24-hours a day, 7 days a week.

For the time being, people will be able to use the service to get duplicate certificates for:

  • motorcycles (class 1 and 2 vehicles)
  • cars and passenger vehicles (class 3, 4, 5 and 7 vehicles)

The DVSA is making all certificates issued since 20 May 2018 available on the service – including both pass and fails. The service will be expanded to include certificates for lorries, buses and trailers later in the year.

The new service is part of the overall MOT history service that motorists may already be familiar with. Like the rest of the MOT history service, it works on mobiles, tablets and PCs.

The option to view the certificate appears alongside the test record in the vehicle’s MOT history. To view the certificate, the user needs to type in the 11-digit reference number (without spaces) from the latest vehicle log book (V5C).  The MOT test result and certificate are available as soon as the result has been recorded in the MOT testing service.

Although motorists are now able to get a free duplicate of their MOT certificate online, MOT centres will still be able to provide this service for people who need it and can charge up to £10 for a duplicate certificate. Duplicates can still be provided to any customer who has a right to one. Evidence required can be either:

the vehicle registration and 11-digit reference number from the latest vehicle log book (V5C) or the test number from the original certificate (although it is less likely if it has been lost)

DVSA were aware from feedback from motorists that there was a need to make obtaining duplicates easier – having to physically go to garages was seen as a real burden. In the longer term, the DVSA wants to help motorists understand that they don’t need the paper certificate most of the time. But in the meantime, the message was that motorists wanted a better way of getting a duplicate.

The DVSA is also aware that several online businesses are charging people for unofficial MOT certificates. None of these companies has a licence or any other form of permission from DVSA to produce these look-a-like certificates. The new service will mean that people can access duplicates, free of charge, from the official government website.

DVSA will then be able to take action against those unofficial sites – and the online availability of correct certificates should reduce the demand for unofficial ones.

You can check out the new service for yourself by entering your own vehicle’s registration and 11-digit reference number from the latest vehicle log book (V5C). Simply go to www.gov.uk/replace-mot-certificate.

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