Double trouble in car tax blunder

Peter Simmonds wants an apology from the DVLA after they declared both his old and new car off the road
Peter Simmonds wants an apology from the DVLA after they declared both his old and new car off the road

A motorist is calling for an apology from a Government body after a mix up left him driving illegally for three weeks.

Peter Simmonds, of Finsbury Avenue, St Annes is concerned other people may have been hit by the same DVLA problem which occurred when he transferred a private number plate from one car to another.

Despite filling in the correct online forms both Mr Simmonds cars were declared off the road, something he did not discover until tax refunds arrived for two vehicles, not one.

The 77-year-old is concerned at what could have happened had he been involved in an accident or even been stopped by the police.

He said: “Back at the end of January I bought a new car.

“I have a private number plate and transferred it to the new car.

“I did it all online and thought everything had gone through OK.

“I was shocked when I found out both cars had been declared SORN

“I had been driving for three weeks without knowing.

“What would have happened if I had been involved in an accident?

“I wouldn’t have been insured.”

Mr Simmonds is surprise he was able to drive around in an uninsured vehicle for nearly a month without attracting attention.

“What would have happened if I’d been stopped by the police?

“I was driving an untaxed vehicle.

“It says something that I wasn’t stopped in all that time.”

The mix up only became apparent when Mr Simmonds received refund cheques from the DVLA on consecutive days.

“I realised straight away what had happened,” he said.

“I rang the DVLA but it was a Saturday and I was told nobody was available who could reverse the SORN declaration.

“I then had to go straight out and re-tax the car because I didn’t want to be left driving a car I knew wasn’t legal.

“I ended up having to pay the tax for the second time before I could bank the refund cheque.”

Mr Simmonds, who transferred his plate from a 2003 Skoda Octavia to a 2012 version of the same model, is concerned others could have the same problem and has written to the head of the agency.

He said: “I just wonder who else this has happened to.

“It’s a serious issue and there was no way of going.

“When I spoke to the DVLA we were able to sort out the problem but nobody has said they are sorry.

“I have written to the CEO of the DVLA but I’m am yet to hear anything back.

“It could have put me in a potentially awkward situation.”

Mr Simmonds has now handed the keys to his old car to his daughter and both vehicles are fully taxed.