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Tuesday, 2 October 2023

Vehicle crime reduction initiatives

One of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency's (DVLA) key aims is to reduce vehicle related crime. DVLA achieves this by a number of measures it has put in place.

Emphasising the importance of the registration certificate

The law requires someone selling a vehicle to pass the relevant part of the registration document to the purchaser and notify DVLA of the change. DVLA and the police strongly recommend that prospective purchasers should:

  • have sight of the registration document V5 or registration certificate V5/C
  • physically check details contained on it against the vehicle prior to purchase

To tax a used vehicle with form V10 (or V85 for heavy goods vehicles) the appropriate section of the registration document/certificate must be produced. So it's essential that the appropriate part of the registration certificate is passed on to the buyer when a vehicle is sold.

Vehicle identity checks (VIC)

The VIC scheme, operated by the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA), has been introduced as a deterrent to ‘ringing’ cars. Ringing is a practice which involves passing off stolen cars as repaired accident damaged cars.

Since April 2003, cars notified to DVLA by an insurer as ‘written off’ within salvage categories A, B or C need to pass a VIC. DVLA will then issue a registration certificate V5C.

Certificates of destruction

The End of Life Vehicles Directive allows a certificate of destruction (COD) to be issued for a vehicle taken to an authorised treatment facility (ATF). The COD will be issued to the last owner or holder of the vehicle and will end the keeper's responsibility by updating DVLA’s records.

To process end of life vehicles, the ATF must be licensed by the Environment Agency or Scottish Environment Protection Agency.

Registration of number plate suppliers

The register of number plate suppliers scheme (RNPS) has now been extended to include Scotland and Northern Ireland from 1 August 2008.

The scheme ensures that number plates are only sold by registered suppliers. A purchaser must be able to show entitlement to a particular registration mark and can provide verification of personal details. Number plate suppliers are required to keep records of sales. They must make the records available for inspection by the police, trading standards, DVLA or Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) enforcement officers.

Continuous registration

Under the continuous registration system, the vehicle’s registered keeper remains financially responsible for the vehicle, until DVLA is formally notified of its transfer or disposal.

This makes it possible to carry out enforcement from the record, instead of relying on a sighting on the public road. It also encourages individuals to notify DVLA of any changes in keeper details.

Name and address checks

To improve accuracy DVLA has introduced new measures to check name and address details to be entered onto the vehicle record. Documentary evidence is required to verify name and address with forms V55/4 and V55/5 used mainly to register imported vehicles, rebuilds and kit built vehicles.

More thorough measures are being taken to establish the true address when registration documents are returned undelivered.

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