SORN applications more than double during lockdown

Applications for statutory off-road notices more than double during first four weeks of lockdown as drivers save cash when not using their cars

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More than twice as many drivers made ‘SORN’ applications to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) in order to save money on road tax during the coronavirus lockdown.

SORNs (statutory off-road notices) allow drivers to not pay VED road tax on an unused car, as long as it is stored off the public highway and not driven. Between 23 March and 19 April 2020 there were 544,887 SORN applications, compared with 252,820 over the same dates last year, and an increase of 115.5 per cent.

The data comes via a freedom of information request made to the DVLA by This is Money, and shows Britons restricted to their homes were quick to save money on cars that were not being used during the lockdown. 

A car can be placed on a SORN via the DVLA website, after which the organisation will send a cheque to refund the remainder of its annual road tax - although only for full calendar months.

Cars that have had a SORN application made against them also do not need insurance, leading to further potential savings - although many motorists choose to keep third-party fire and theft cover, to guard against unforeseen eventualities when the car is in storage.

But as the lockdown eases and Bits are advised to travel to work by car rather than use public transport, it’s likely a number of cars will be removed from the SORN register. This is done simply by paying its VED as one would normally.

Have you SORN'd your car due to the lockdown? Let us know in the comments below...

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