The MOT certificate
The MOT certificate confirms that your vehicle at the time of its test met the minimum acceptable environmental and road safety standards required by law. It doesn’t mean that the vehicle is roadworthy for the life of the certificate and isn’t a substitute for regular maintenance.
The need for an MOT certificate
It's generally an offence to use a vehicle of test age that doesn’t have a current test certificate on a public road except when:
- taking it to a test centre for a test booked earlier
- bringing it away from a test centre after it has failed the test, to a place of repair
- taking it to or bringing it away from a place where, by previous arrangement, repairs are to be made or have been made to fix the faults that caused the vehicle to fail its test
Even in the above circumstances you may still be prosecuted for driving an unroadworthy vehicle if it doesn’t meet various regulations affecting its construction and use. The insurance may also not be valid.
Vehicle test certificate
An A4 size, plain paper, vehicle test certificate will be issued following the inspection of your vehicle.
Any defects that are not serious enough to result in a test failure will be shown on a vehicle test certificate. It's important that these defects are repaired as soon as possible.
An example of the vehicle test certificate is available below:
How this affects you
To drive or keep a vehicle on the road you still need to have a valid vehicle test certificate if your vehicle requires one and you will still get a renewal reminder when your annual test is due.
When buying a vehicle
When you buy a vehicle, make sure the previous keeper passes on the vehicle test certificate, or you may need to apply for a duplicate at the cost of £10.00. You can only request a duplicate certificate for a valid MOT. Expired certificates cannot be provided.
A test certificate relates only to the condition of testable items at the time of the test and should not be regarded as:
- evidence of its condition at any other time
- evidence of the general mechanical condition of the vehicle
- evidence that the vehicle fully complies with all aspects of the law on vehicle construction and use
Checking the authenticity of an MOT certificate
If you have reason to believe the certificate you have been issued isn’t genuine, call the Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA) enquiries team using the phone number at the link below.
Replacing lost or damaged MOT certificates
If you have lost or damaged your MOT certificate, you can contact DVA's booking and rostering customer support team at the email address at the link below.
You’ll need to include your vehicle registration, name, contact number and address in your email.