DfT reports a £94m projected loss in unpaid VED road tax for 2019/20

 

According to data from the Department for Transport (DfT), road tax evasion has tripled since the abolishment of the paper tax disc.

The paper tax disc was abolished in October 2014, with figures from the financial year 2013/14  increasing from £34m to an alarming projected loss of £94.1 million in unpaid VED road tax for the financial year 2019/20.

Government figures show just how much of an increase there’s been in drivers failing to pay for their vehicle to be on the road since the paper tax disc was killed off just 5 years ago.

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Road tax evasion has tripled since the abolishment of the paper tax disc. © Copyright Chris Downer and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

These figures suggest around 634,000 vehicles are untaxed, which means the Treasury is collecting 1.5% less in Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) than it should be because of drivers failing to pay.

This equates to an increase of 0.58% in the financial year 2013/14, when untaxed vehicles were easy to spot by simply looking at the date on the paper tax disc or noticing if one was missing altogether.

The paper tax disc was abolished in order to save the Government £10 million a year, however the £60 million deficit for this financial year compared to 2013/14, suggests that getting rid of the disc has been costly for taxpayers.

However, compared to the financial year 2017/18, evasion rates have come down as £107 million was lost that year due to VED evasion. Some of this financial year’s lost revenue may be recouped from offenders by way of penalties.

“While it is good news that vehicle tax evasion has gone down, it is still significantly higher than it was before the tax disc was abolished in October 2014,” said RAC spokesman Simon Williams, adding: “It’s therefore hard to see that doing away with the tax disc has been good for ensuring as many vehicles as possible are taxed for use on our roads.”

 

 

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