Drivers could be fined £2,500 if they forget to update these car details after lockdown

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Many road users may have applied for a statutory off-the-road notification (SORN) during lockdown as a simple way to save on their car insurance and tax costs. Those not using their cars may have SORN’d their vehicle during the shutdown to enjoy a range of benefits such as securing tax refunds and reducing or suspending any insurance costs. 

However, many drivers could have forgotten about their SORN and get behind the wheel of their vehicle without changing this status. 

This could lead to major consequences for road users which could lead to owners prosecuted and handed out heavy fines. 

This is because these drivers will technically not have any car tax or car insurance in place which means they are using their vehicles illegally. 

Experts at Admiral warn the DVLA and the Motor Insurance Database (MID) can cross-reference their records in a matter of seconds. 

This makes it easy for them to identify and take action against any uninsured drivers who have not declared their car as off the road. 

Figures from the MID have previously revealed that around 3,000 drivers are issued warnings about this every single day in the UK. 

Admiral says road users will be issued an Insurance Advisory letter warning them that they could be fined if they do not act and secure new cover. 

However, road users who fail to do this during a set time limit could be hit with a fixed penalty notice of £100. 

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In some extreme cases, road users could even have their car clamped or destroyed while owners may face heavier charges for driving without insurance. 

Owners may also be fined £1,000 for driving without valid car tax in another blow for road users. 

Police officers can detect tax evaders through simple technology while Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras can also highlight offenders. 

Data from the Department for Transport has revealed the number of untaxed vehicles has trebled since tax discs were scrapped in 2014 in a major worry for authorities. 

The only exception to driving a vehicle with a SORN is if a motorist is going to or from a pre-booked garage test. 

A statement from GOV.UK says: “You can only drive a vehicle with a SORN on a public road to go to or from a pre-booked MOT or other testing appointment. 

“You face court prosecution and a fine of up to £2,500 if you use it on the road for any other reason.”

The RAC warns motorists that a vehicle returning to the road after a SORN must have an up to date MOT certificate in place.

Many drivers SORN their cars because it failed a test or because a certificate expired while it was off the road. 

Under these circumstances, the car will need to be tested again unless the vehicle secured a temporary six-month lockdown extension. 

In this case, owners must ensure their car is in a road legal and safe condition before taking the vehicle onto public roads. 

Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis revealed at the start of lockdown that drivers could “save cash” by declaring a vehicle as off the road. 

But he urged drivers to think carefully about the move as it would be “a faff” for a small saving made under lockdown. 

He previously said: “The difficulty is we don’t know how long lockdown will last. If it’s just weeks, this’d be a faff for a small saving.”

“Yet if you don’t think you’ll drive much anyway even when the rules relax, then, for example, if you’ve two cars and are only likely to use one, it could save you cash. 

“Though do remember if you’ve no car insurance, your car isn’t covered for damage or theft.

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