The effects of the coronavirus lockdown in the UK are far-reaching and have raised important questions for the public. Such as what to do if an MOT certificate expires during the lockdown.

In anticipation of this, the government has passed an amendment to the Road Traffic Act 1988 to deal with the difficulties of vehicle testing during this period of lockdown and social distancing, which we explore below.

If you need further legal advice, contact us today to have your questions answered by a professional and experienced legal team.

Motor offence solicitors Dewsbury

With many MOT testing centres closing down for all but essential work over the lockdown period, the government has recognised that it may be difficult for some people to have their vehicle tested.

Subsequently, The Motor Vehicles (Tests) (Amendment) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020 were passed in March to address this.

While the amendments do not apply to goods vehicles or public service vehicles (for which alternative provisions are being made). However  they do shed light on matters that affect ordinary motorists.

My MOT is due after 30th March 2020 – do I need to get my vehicle tested?

If your current MOT certificate for your personal car expires between 30th March 2020 and 29 March 2021 (inclusively) then a one-off period of six months where you may not require a test certificate is initiated on the date of expiry.

For example, if a vehicle’s MOT certificate expires on 10th April 2020 there would be a 6 month period where no MOT test is required.

However, this does NOT apply to vehicles that had an expired MOT before 30th March 2020. Tis is only vehicles with certificates that expire after 30th March.

The new rules make a point of saying that the vehicle must still be maintained and safe to drive on the road during this time. Therefore common-sense safety precautions such as ensuring that your tyres feature a safe and legal depth of tread are still vital. Even during a 6-month period where no certificate is required.

What if my car has failed its MOT?

It is important to note that the 6-month MOT testing extension does NOT mean that cars that have failed their MOT are allowed back on the road. The extension only applies if the vehicle’s MOT certificate expires after 30th March 2020.

Safety is still important, too. Drivers who are found to be operating a vehicle that is not deemed safe (i.e., would have failed an MOT) can be fined and have points added to their licence in the same way as normal.

Motoring defence lawyers

Ashmans Solicitors have years of experience in motor defence cases and operate a 24/7 legal advice helpline to ensure everyone has access to the help they need day or night.

For a free initial enquiry, call us on 0333 009 6275. We are available to take your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

You can also email us on enquiries@ashmanssolicitors.com or complete our Free Online Enquiry Form and we’ll be in touch soon.