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Car insurance: MOT due date

When is my MOT due?

How to find out when your MOT is due, and whether you can drive without a valid MOT.

By Mehdi Punjwani

Published: 06 October 2021

Car mechanic and owner

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When is my MOT due?

Your car will need an MOT by the time it reaches its third year anniversary of registration – or the anniversary of the last MOT if it’s more than three years old.

How do I check when my MOT is due?

You can easily check when your MOT is due by entering your registration details on the government’s website. It will also tell you when your road tax is due.

How up to date is the MOT expiry date information?

I can take up to five days for the DVLA to update the data on the MOT database. If it’s been longer than five days since you had your MOT and it’s still not updated, you should contact the DVSA.

Do I need an MOT?

Once your car is three years old, you’ll need to get an MOT once every year. It’s a good idea to get your MOT before your old one runs out, though – that way, if your car needs repairs, you can still drive it until your certificate expires.

Luckily, you can get your car retested up to a month before its MOT expires, and still keep your renewal date. So if your MOT expires in September and you get your car checked in August, you still won’t need to check it again until the following September. 

Is my car exempt from MOT?

Some vehicles don’t need an annual MOT. If your car was built in the last three years, it won’t need a checkup – but you might also be exempt if your car is much older.

Classic cars are exempt from MOTs, so long as they meet the government’s definition – that’s any car more than 40 years old, and which hasn’t had any modifications in the last 30 years. 

A car also doesn’t need an MOT if it’s been officially taken off the road. 

What happens if I drive without an MOT?

The only legal reason you can drive a non-exempt car without an MOT is if you’re driving to an approved MOT centre for a pre-booked appointment. Even then, it’s best to keep your appointment confirmation with you, just in case you get pulled over.

Otherwise, driving without an MOT is against the law. You could be fined up to £1,000 if you’re caught. If the MOT finds that your car is ‘dangerous’ and you drive it anyway, the penalties are even stiffer - £2,500, 3 penalty points, and you could be banned from driving. 

How early can I get an MOT

You’ll be able to get your MOT done up to a month (minus one day) before your last certificate expires, while still retaining the same renewal date.

Can I park my car on the road if it doesn’t have an MOT?

You won’t be able to park your car on the road without a valid MOT and tax – you may receive a fine or your vehicle may be seized if you don’t have the right paperwork.

Do I need an MOT if my car is kept on private lands?

If your car is kept on private lands with a SORN (statutory off road notice) it won’t need a valid MOT – but you’ll still need to tell the DVSA it’s being kept off the road.

Compare car insurance quotes

Car insurance, like MOTs and road tax, is a legal requirement to drive on UK roads – and finding cheaper cover is easier when you compare quotes with MoneySuperMarket. Just tell us about yourself, your driving history and the vehicle you want to insure, and we’ll search the markets for deals that match your needs.

You’ll be able to compare quotes by the cost, the overall cover you get, and the excess you’ll need to pay to make a claim. Once you’ve found the deal you want, just click through to the provider to finalise your purchase and you’ll be ready to hit the road. 

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