Number of drivers avoiding tax has risen

Alice Nicholson

By: Alice Nicholson

The number of drivers avoiding paying their car tax has risen, according to the Department of Transport.

After the abolishment of paper tax discs, the number of motorists failing to pay their vehicle excise duty (VED) has risen dramatically. The Department of Transport states that in the UK around 560,000 vehicles on the road are currently evading tax, and this number looks to be increasing. The number has more than doubled since 2013, when the figure reached 210,000.

A survey conducted earlier this year found that 1.4 per cent of vehicles on the road are unlicensed, which could cost £80 million in lost revenue every year. When the survey was administered in 2013, the figure was 0.6 per cent, costing £35 million. It is clear to see how much tax evasion has increased over two years.

According to the BBC, RAC chief engineer David Bizley, said: “These are very worrying and disappointing statistics indeed.

“Sadly, the concerns we raised about the number of car tax evaders going up at the time the tax disc was confined to history have become a reality.”

Oliver Morley, DVLA chief executive, added: "Almost 99 per cent of all vehicles on the road are correctly taxed: that’s around £6 billion in vehicle tax passed to the Treasury every year.

"We write to every registered vehicle keeper in the UK to remind them when their tax is due and we have introduced a range of measures to make vehicle tax easy to pay.

"At the same time we are taking action against those who are determined to break the law."