What Has the DVLA Been Doing to Clamp Down on Tax Evasion?

When it comes to doing your taxes, we know how much of a daunting task it can be. While no one really likes to engage in it, it’s something we must all do. We must also remember our vehicle taxes; even HGVs need to be taxed as well. The only vehicles that can easily escape the DVLA taxes are the new and improved electric cars and other electric vehicles. This is due to the fact that they’re new on the scene and there aren’t too many of them existing on the roads; hence, there’s no large sum that needs to be paid.

However, the year of 2018 was a pretty bad period for owners to evade their vehicle taxes and since then, the DVLA has been keeping a very close eye and cracking down heavily. Read on as Easy As HGV dives further into what the DVLA are doing as well as why and if it is actually working.

Why Have They Been Cracking Down?

Simply put, tax evasion is now being tracked very closely by the DVLA. During 2018 they actually found that evasion rates were on the rise. This was observed in almost 11 cities around the UK and the rates were alarming. The following 11 cities had enforcement action taken to combat against this issue:

  • London
  • Northern Ireland
  • Birmingham
  • Manchester
  • Glasgow
  • Sheffield
  • Nottingham
  • Cardiff
  • Leicester
  • Bristol
  • Coventry

In 2018, approximately 46,4000 actions of enforcement had to be taken in London to deal with the issue of untaxed vehicles. This resulted in both clamping and fining of vehicles that owners failed to pay on the middle band. In total, this resulted in £69,600,000 that was seen as being a huge loss for the DVLA due to the evasion of taxes. If you didn’t know before, most of the money collected via taxes is actually used for maintaining and improving the roadways; therefore, it is a huge deal when it comes to catching those who are on the evasion road.

How are They Enforcing It?

The DVLA runs on the idea of tax it or lose it. As such, the DVLA are sending out numerous agents who are searching and finding untaxed vehicles all around the country and they are even educating others on the matter as well as the consequences attached. There are also a series of ad campaigns that are working in favour of the DVLA within the mentioned hotspots. In essence, this action is designed to ensure that motorists want to take the necessary action to get their taxes in order.

They have even gone above and beyond by introducing their very own personalised DVLA with a specialised giant clamp that indicates if you don’t tax it, they will clamp it. The main idea of this was to get people thinking and raise further awareness on the issue. Since the idea came to the market, it has actually been working wonders and there have been 9,000 vehicles already clamped.

What is the Penalty?

If you currently own an untaxed vehicle, there are a series of different offences that you can face. Even the length of time being untaxed also plays a huge role in this and the penalties are as follows:

  • You’re going to have to pay a fine of £80 which is imposed by the DVLA if you didn’t pay 28 days after you’re due.
  • If you fail to pay, it’s going to increase to 5 times what you pay annually or up to £1,000.
  • If you’re caught driving without having paid your taxes, you’re going to be made to pay £1,000 on the spot.
  • If you even know of someone who is driving without paying, both you and the driver are going to have to pay £1,000 or £2,500 if you’re in a vehicle which can transport 8 or more passengers.
  • If you’re driving a vehicle that has a higher due rate and you don’t pay, you can be subjected to £1,000 or up to 5 times your annual tax.
  • When you drive without paying your taxes, you stand a higher chance of having your car impounded or even clamped. In that case, you’re also going to have to pay a release fee of £100, your taxable amount and a surety deposit that holds a value of between £160-£700 within a 24 hour period. After this period, you’re going to be without a vehicle for up to 2 weeks after.

So, if you’re residing in a high evasion area, it’s best to get a move on your taxes. The DVLA are coming and they are doing everything they can to clamp down on offenders.