The importance of checking your MOT certificate for mistakes
Every UK vehicle owner should know what an MOT certificate is. Yet, what many overlook is the importance of checking their MOT certificate for mistakes.
In this blog, we’ll dive into the relevance of the MOT certificate, common MOT certificate mistakes and the process of amending any inaccuracies.
What is an MOT certificate?
An MOT certificate is the official document provided in the United Kingdom that affirms a vehicle's roadworthiness. This certificate is a result of the MOT test, an annual examination mandatory for vehicles over three years old, covering various aspects such as safety, roadworthiness, and exhaust emissions.
7 common MOT certificate mistakes
Despite being a standardised document, MOT certificates can occasionally contain mistakes. Here are 7 common mistakes that could be found on an MOT certificate:
- Incorrect vehicle details: this is one of the most common types of errors and can include the incorrect registration number, VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), incorrect make or model, or inaccurate colour of the vehicle
- Inaccurate mileage: this is when the tester inputs the wrong mileage at the time of the test. While it may seem trivial, discrepancies in recorded mileage can lead to suspicion of tampering or fraud. It can also impact the value of your vehicle when you sell it. If you lease a vehicle, you may have mileage limits and an incorrect mileage reading may impact your lease
- Wrong MOT test date: this is when the date on your MOT certificate doesn’t correspond with the actual date your vehicle was tested
- Faults not recorded: an MOT certificate should contain a list of advisories, minor, major, or dangerous faults that the tester identified during the MOT test. Sometimes, a vehicle might have minor or major faults that are not noted on the MOT certificate. This can be problematic as it gives the false impression that the vehicle is in a better condition than it is
- Misclassified faults: a tester could potentially misclassify faults, marking them as minor when they should be major, or vice versa. This can impact the overall understanding of the vehicle's condition
- Incorrect tester details: there could be mistakes in the details of the tester who carried out the MOT test, like their name or identification number
- Incorrect test centre details: sometimes, the MOT certificate may have incorrect details about the test centre, including the centre's name, address, or its unique identification number (VTS number)
Why should you check your MOT certificate for mistakes?
While it may seem like a tedious task, checking your MOT certificate for mistakes can be of significant benefit. A wrongly noted MOT certificate mistake could lead to legal issues, particularly if the errors involve your vehicle's identity or status of roadworthiness. Here’s 6 reasons why you should check your MOT certificate for mistakes:
- Maintain legal compliance: your MOT certificate is a legal document, and any inaccuracies can potentially get in trouble with the law. Ensuring the document is correct helps you stay legally compliant
- Avoid fines: driving a vehicle with an invalid MOT certificate could lead to fines and penalties. If the certificate contains mistakes, it might be considered invalid
- Protect insurance coverage: in case of an accident, your insurance company may refuse to cover damages if your MOT certificate is inaccurate or invalid
- Vehicle resale value: when selling your vehicle, prospective buyers will likely request to see your MOT certificate, particularly looking at the recorded mileage and past faults. If the data looks incorrect, it might raise doubts about the vehicle's history and condition, thereby negatively impacting its resale value
- Leasing contract compliance: if you lease your vehicle, you may have limits on the number of miles you’re allowed to drive. An incorrect mileage reading might cause your leasing company to question the mileage you are doing.
- Road safety: the MOT certificate verifies the roadworthiness of your vehicle. Errors, especially those related to the vehicle's condition, might put you and others at risk if they lead to neglected maintenance or repairs
- Peace of mind: knowing that your MOT certificate is accurate and reflects the true condition of your vehicle offers peace of mind and helps you plan any necessary maintenance or repairs
How to amend or fix MOT certificate mistakes
If you discover an error in your MOT certificate, it's essential to take immediate action to rectify it.
You should start by contacting the MOT test centre where the inspection was conducted. Explain the issue to them, and if the mistake originated from their end, they’ll provide a replacement MOT certificate with the corrected information.
There are also some rules when it comes to fixing MOT certificate mistakes.
Getting the wrong mileage corrected for an MOT test less than 28 days ago:
The MOT tester will check the mileage and if it was indeed wrong, they will provide you with a replacement MOT certificate.
Getting the wrong mileage corrected for an MOT test more than 28 days ago:
You will need to report this to the DVSA by emailing them at email@example.com
You will need to email them photo proof of what the mileage should be, and be able to prove that the photo was taken on the same date as the MOT test.
We recommend taking a picture of your mileage the day of your MOT test in case you’re ever in this situation
Getting vehicle details or MOT test centre details corrected
Email the DVSA at firstname.lastname@example.org if your MOT certificate has the wrong vehicle make, model, colour, country where it was registered or MOT test centre.
Add or remove test records from your MOT history
If there’s a test record that’s missing, or one that doesn’t belong to your vehicle, you will need to email the DVSA customer service centre at email@example.com or call them on 0300 123 9000.
You will need to provide them with your:
- Phone number
- Number plate
- Vehicle make and model
- MOT date
- MOT test number (if you know it)
- MOT test centre name and address
In conclusion, ensuring that your MOT certificate is error-free is an integral part of responsible vehicle ownership. Remember, an accurate MOT certificate maintains your vehicle's legal status, protects its value, and supports overall road safety. So, next time you receive your MOT result, make sure you check your MOT certificate thoroughly.