Keeping A SORN Car at Home or on The Driveway


If you own a vehicle that you don’t plan to drive on a public road, you’ll need to complete a SORN so that you don’t have to pay tax. Completing a SORN means you’ll be declaring your car off-road, and you won’t be able to drive it without facing a hefty fine. Read on to find out more about keeping a SORN car at home or on the driveway. 

What Does SORN mean? 

Sorn Stands for ‘Statutory Off Road Notification, a SORN is used to tell the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) that you’re registering your vehicle as off the road. Once it has been registered as SORN, it can’t be driven on a public road. You’ll need to keep it on private lands, such as on a driveway or in a garage. 

Do I Need to Declare SORN? 

You need to make a SORN when you take your car off the road and you don’t want to tax and insure it. You must make a SORN in the following situations: 

  • Your vehicle isn’t taxed 
  • Your vehicle isn’t insured 
  • You want to break a vehicle down for parts before you scrap it 
  • You buy a vehicle and want to keep it off the road (you can’t transfer a SORN from the previous owner) 

You can’t simply stop paying vehicle tax in any of these situations, even though you won’t be driving the car. If you haven’t registered it with a SORN and you stop paying tax, you’ll automatically be fined £80.

This fine can sometimes be reduced on appeal, however, it could increase up to as much as £1,000 if left unpaid. Once you’ve registered for a SORN, you’ll receive a refund for any full months of tax remaining on your car. 

Where Can I Park A SORN car? 

A SORN vehicle must be kept on privately owned land. Examples include a driveway, garage or even a garden. You can’t park it on public land such as the road outside of your house. Whilst your car is off the road, it’s important to keep it in good condition so that it’s roadworthy once you are ready to drive it again. Before returning it to the roads, make sure you arrange car servicing in Barnsley. A skilled mechanic can inspect your car to ensure it’s safe to be driven. 

Does A SORN Transfer Over When A Car Is Sold? 

No, a SORN doesn’t transfer between owners. If you sell a SORN car, the new owner will have to re-apply if they want to keep the vehicle off the road. If you’re buying a car, you’ll need to complete a SORN in your own name as the new owner. 

Do I Need To Insure A SORN car? 

If you’ve registered your car as SORN, it’s up to you whether you insure it or not. Whilst you don’t have to, you should keep in mind that the vehicle could still be stolen or damaged even though it is out of use and being kept in a garage or on your driveway. Many people opt to cover their SORN vehicle against fire and theft as a minimum. If you haven’t declared your car as off the road with a SORN, you’ll need to ensure it’s taxed and insured. If you don’t insure it, you can expect to receive an Insurance Advisory Letter from the DVLA. This will tell you to insure the vehicle or face a fixed penalty notice. 

Can I Drive A SORN Car? 

No, if you’ve registered your car as SORN, you can’t drive it. The only exception is driving it to a pre-booked MOT. Keep in mind that if you are stopped by the police on the way, you’ll need to prove to them that you are going to an MOT test. If and when you become ready to drive your car again,  you’ll need to ensure that it’s properly taxed, insured  and has an up-to-date MOT before you take it on a public road. When you tax the vehicle, the DVLA will cancel the SORN automatically. 

Does A SORN Need To Be Renewed? 

Before December 2013, motorists needed to renew their SORN every year. However, changes brought in to remove unnecessary red tape mean that they only need to tell DVLA once when they take their vehicle off the road. Once registered, a SORN lasts indefinitely. There’s no need to renew or update your SORN until you plan to sell your car, scrap it, or return it to the public roads. 

How Do I Make A SORN? 

If you’re registered as the car’s legal keeper, you can register for a SORN by contacting the DVLA on its  24-hour telephone number: 0300 123 4321. You can also apply online or by post. To apply by post, you’ll need to complete the V890 application form and then send it to DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AR. In some cases, you can only apply for SORN by post. For example, if you’re not yet registered as the vehicle’s legal owner. 

You will need to complete the relevant section in the V5C log book. If you don’t have it yet, you’ll need to fill in the V62 to apply for the logbook. 

How Do I Remove A SORN? 

If you want to drive your car again, you’ll have to remove SORN. All you need to do is tax the vehicle online or over the phone. You can do this in some Post Offices too. You’ll need to make sure you have the 11-digit number from the V5C form to do this. As soon as you’ve taxed your car, it removes the SORN automatically. 

In addition to paying vehicle tax, you need to ensure it has an MOT and valid insurance certificate before you drive it on public roads again.

After keeping a SORN car at home or on the driveway for an extended period of time, it’s a good idea to arrange car servicing in Barnsley. Get in touch with a reliable garage like Wyatt Auto Services to book a service or MOT.



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