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The paper tax disc, do you want it back?

Your keys, your wallet, that check-up with the dentist — there are lots of things we have to remember every day without even taking into account all the things you have to remember for your car.

It may be two years since the paper tax disc was scrapped but motorists still want them back.

Paper tax disk.

According a recent survey by uSwitch.com, three quarters of respondents said they want the DVLA to bring back the tax disc.

Why? Because without it drivers are finding it hard to remember when to renew.

Paper discs were replaced by an online system in October 2014, and even drivers with the best intentions are getting caught out for forgetting to renew. This is despite receiving reminders in the post.

How are they getting caught out?

Now that everything has moved online, vehicles are checked against a database of those who have paid for their tax through the use of cameras with automatic number plate recognition that have been placed on busy roads, This is Money explains.

So, what else can be done?

Did you know?

  • 1.4% of vehicles were unlicensed in 2015 compared to 0.6% in 2013
  • That equates to around £80 million in lost revenue
  • 41% of unlicensed vehicles had new owners since the paper tax disk was stopped.

Source: Vehicle Excise Duty evasion statistics: 2015

Kasey Cassells, insurance expert at uSwitch.com, believes "the DVLA should consider more relevant notifications, like text alerts which have proved successful for the NHS."

If you're having trouble remembering your renewal date, Cassells also suggests setting up calendar reminders on your smartphone, or keeping an old tax disc in the car window, to make sure you avoid the £1,000 fine. But that's not all motorists complained about. Consumers are disgruntled by the fact they can no longer buy second-hand cars with tax left.

They are also annoyed by the fact they have to pay a whole month's tax if they buy a second-hand car part way through the month, and only receive the remaining full months as a refund if they sell their vehicle.

This is because the changes to the tax disc meant road tax could no longer be transferred to a new owner when a vehicle is sold. Instead, sellers must cancel car tax and used-car buyers must renew it as soon as they've purchased the car.

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