v5c paperwork

Do I need a V5C to tax or insure my car?

26th Feb, 2021

We get a lot of questions about V5Cs here at Scrap Car Network. By far one of the most common is – can I still scrap my car if I’ve lost my V5C? But after that, perhaps the next most common is: do I need a V5C to tax or insure my car? We’ll go into the answer in a bit more detail below, but first a quick recap on the important stuff.

Your V5C is an important document supplied by the Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency, which proves that you’re the registered keeper of the car. That means you’re the one responsible for informing the DVLA of any changes to your car’s condition, like if it was to be scrapped, for example. We highly recommend taking the time to put your V5C in a safe place, as it is indeed relevant to issues around your tax and insurance.

Can I tax my car without my V5C?

Yes, it’s possible to tax your car without your V5C. However, you might find that it’s a slightly more difficult task, depending on how you’re choosing to do it.

You can pay your Vehicle Excise Duty (your VED, or car tax) in one of three ways:

Online, through the government’s official website
By phone, calling the DVLA on 0300 123 4321
In person at the post office

Whichever option you choose to tax your car, you’ll need a specific reference number. You’ll find this on your V5C if you have it, or the green ‘new keeper’ slip from your logbook if you’ve just bought the car. If you don’t have either of these, you could use a recent reminder (V11) or ‘last chance’ warning letter from the DVLA. If you don’t have any of those documents though, you’ll need to apply for a new V5C.

So while it’s technically possible to tax your car without a V5C, there’s no denying that having it makes the process go a whole lot more smoothly. Plus, it also makes it a lot easier to eventually scrap your car.

Just as with taxing it, it’s technically possible to scrap your car without a V5C, as long as you can still prove you’re the registered keeper. However, there’s no doubt that acquiring that proof by other means is far more of a hassle than simply having your V5C on hand, so to be honest it’s probably easiest all round to just get it replaced as soon as you can.

Can I insure my car without my V5C?

It depends on who you’re insured with. Some require your V5C before they’ll offer you a policy, whereas others don’t. Once again, we’d just advise having your V5C with you anyway, to save yourself from the potential hassle.

Insurers who do ask for your V5C will be primarily doing so to ascertain that you’re the registered keeper. The registered keeper is the person responsible for insurance, even if they’re not the owner or the main driver of the car. This allows the insurance company to know who their first point of contact is if they need to discuss any policy changes, damages, and cover.

However, other insurance companies might not require a copy of your V5C immediately, and may sell you a policy on the condition that you provide it at a later date. As for immediate information, they might not ask for much more than the standard stuff like your vehicle details (model, mileage, modifications etc.) as well as your details (name, date of birth, marital status etc.).

One last thing to bear in mind – while you can technically get a policy without your V5C, you may find that prices may be a little higher and further down the line. Honestly, it’s best to get a replacement as soon as possible!

But what if I’ve lost my V5C?

Just give the DVLA a call and they can sort you out with a replacement V5C so long as your address, your vehicle details, and your name haven’t changed.

Your V5C is an important piece of paperwork to have and is especially important when it comes to VED and insurance. But, as we all know, accidents happen, and things can go missing. If you are certain that you don’t have the document, simply ring the DVLA and they’ll make sure to get you the document to prove you’re the registered keeper. And of course, if you decide to have your car scrapped, let the DVLA know as soon as possible to save yourself some cash!

A word of warning: while Scrap Car Network can scrap your car without the V5C, you are legally obliged to contact the DVLA in writing to declare that the car is off the road and ready to be fully de-registered. If you don’t, the DVLA could prosecute you and land you with a hefty fine.

So that’s the paperwork questions about tax and insurance answered! If you’ve got any similar queries about scrapping your car, you can find some answers over on our FAQ page. Or if you’re looking to scrap your car immediately, you can count on us to get you the best price with minimal fuss. Simply enter a few details into our homepage and we’ll offer you an instant quote. Interested to see how much your vehicle is worth?

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