Coronavirus / MOT for light vehicles.

With regards restrictions in place intended to slow the spread of the coronavirus, the FTA has given the following update on light vehicle testing. FTA is actively speaking on behalf of logistics in daily industry calls with Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), as well as the Department for Transport (DfT) and other government departments.

  Extension of MOT due dates for light vehicles
Government has announced that from 30 March 2020, it intends to extend MOT due dates for cars, motorcycles and light vans by six months. Legislation will be introduced on 30 March and will come into immediate effect for 12 months, following a short consultation with key organisations, including FTA.  

MOTs due before 30 March
This means that if a vehicle’s MOT is due before 30 March, and it will need to be used for the reasons described by Government, then it still needs to be tested and an MOT certificate issued.  The Department for Transport (DfT) has issued additional guidance about what to do if a vehicle’s MOT due date is up to and including 29 March 2020.

MOTs due on or after 30 March
Government intends that a relevant vehicle will be automatically given a six-month MOT exemption. This will extend the current MOT expiry date by six months. This is the approach that has been taken for heavy vehicles’ three-month extension, and members have reported the change has taken place on the vehicle record automatically as expected.
Once the legislation is in place, operators or owners will not need to do anything to extend a vehicle’s MOT expiry date if it is on or after 30 March 2020. However, all vehicles must be kept in a legal, roadworthy condition. It will be possible to check a vehicle’s MOT history on gov.uk to see when an exemption has been issued. This will not be updated straight away, so operators will need to keep checking back to see if the new due date MOT is not yet showing.  Paper exemption certificates will not be issued.
    
If a vehicle’s tax is due, it can be done as soon as the MOT due date has been updated by DVSA on the electronic vehicle record. This applies for a vehicle’s first MOT also, where that is due from 30 March.  The vehicle will be automatically given a six-month MOT exemption from the date its first MOT was due.
    
Vehicles failing an MOT before 30 March
If a vehicle’s first MOT was due before 30 March 2020 and it did not pass it will not get an extension to its MOT due date.  It will need to pass an MOT before it can be driven again.
 
Taking a vehicle for an MOT
The government is allowing MOT centres and garages to remain open. So an individual can still take a vehicle to get an MOT if the vehicle is needed for specific activities. FTA is seeking further clarification on the definition of these activities in respect of those travelling for work (as opposed to or from):
To shop for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.
For any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person. To travel to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home.  
FTA is urgently seeking clarification on the detail of the short consultation and on defining those who are allowed to take a vehicle to an MOT test and will update members through the daily coronavirus enews.             Source –  Freight Transport Association Limited