If your car has reached the end of its serviceable life and can’t be easily part exchanged or sold, scrapping it could be a sensible solution. But if you do this, you will need to let the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) know that the car no longer exists. You can do this either online or by post.
How to tell the DVLA you’ve scrapped your car
The easiest way to tell the DVLA you’ve scrapped your car is by using its website. You’ll just need the vehicle registration number, the 11-digit reference number from your V5 and the name and address of the scrapyard that is disposing of it .
Using the internet to tell the DVLA you’ve scrapped your car is easy. You’ll need the name and address of the scrapyard – even if you didn’t get any money for it – the vehicle registration number and your V5C logbook.
You’ll need an 11-digit reference number from the V5C. This can be found in Section Four if your logbook was issued after April 2019, or Section Nine if it’s from before April 2019.
Simply fill out the form with these details, and you’re done. The DVLA now knows your car has been scrapped.
Informing the DVLA by post that you’ve scrapped your car can take longer, but it’s still pretty straightforward. Simply fill out Section Four of your logbook, or section nine if it’s from before April 2019, and post the relevant section to the DVLA. The address is:
You’ll still need the name and address of the scrapyard for this. Once you’ve posted the section of your logbook, the DVLA will send you a confirmation letter within four weeks.
What if I don’t have my V5C logbook?
If you’ve misplaced your V5C logbook, you wouldn’t be the first person to do this, so don’t panic. If you happen to have the reference number written down, you can still tell the DVLA about your car online.
In the likely event that you don’t have it written down, all you have to do is write a letter to the DVLA. Just explain that you’ve scrapped your car but don’t have the V5C.
Give them your full name and address and the car’s make, model and registration, along with the name, address and VAT number of the dismantler you’ve sold the car to. You can ask the scrapyard for these if you don’t have them.
It’s highly recommended that you sort a replacement logbook before scrapping your vehicle, though. If you apply online and pay £25, you should have your new V5C within five days. Although you don’t need your V5C to scrap the car legally, if you forget to inform the DVLA in writing you might remain as the registered keeper of the car, making you liable for any issues that arise.
Will I get confirmation from the DVLA?
Once you’ve notified the DVLA that your car has been scrapped, you should receive confirmation within four weeks that it has received this information.
This could be in the form of an email, if you did it online and gave them your email address, or you’ll get a letter through the post. You’ll also get a refund cheque sent through for any tax you had left on your car.
If you haven’t heard anything from the DVLA within four weeks, it may be worth giving them a ring on 0300 790 6802.
What if my car has been written off and scrapped by my insurance company?
If you’ve been in an accident and your car has suffered a lot of damage, it might be written off by the insurance company. This means the insurance company has deemed it beyond economic repair.
Depending on the extent of the damage, your car could legally be returned to the road, but in some cases it must be scrapped. If this is the case, your insurance company will usually go through this process on your behalf.
However, you can apply to have the registration number taken off the vehicle if you want to keep it, and must tell the DVLA the vehicle is a write-off. You should also send the V5C to your insurance company, keeping the yellow ‘sell, transfer or part-exchange your vehicle to the motor trade’ section.
What if I don’t tell the DVLA I’ve scrapped my car?
If you don’t let the DVLA know that you’ve scrapped your car, you could be in for some hefty fines.
This is because, as far as the DVLA is aware, the car still exists and is your responsibility. This means you could get a ticket for not taxing the car, even though you don’t have it anymore.
There is also a £1,000 fine for not updating your vehicle’s details, so it’s worth spending half an hour making sure your paperwork is in order.
Scrap or sell your old car with carwow
If you’re driving an older car, scrappage schemes might be a good way to get more money for your motor. Some manufacturers run deals where they will offer larger discounts on new cars if you offer your old car for scrap, so search online to see if any are running right now.
If your car isn’t eligible or you simply don’t want to scrap it, you can sell your car through carwow. Simply upload some photos and details and a network of trusted dealers will bid for your car, leaving you to choose the best offer.