Transferring a registration mark

Transferring a registration mark

Transferring a registration mark

Registration numbers are assigned to every vehicle. If you're the registered keeper of a vehicle, you and the person who is about to become the registered keeper can apply to transfer the vehicle's registration number to another vehicle.

The vehicle registration certificate V5C or V5CNI in Northern Ireland will tell you if the registration number is non-transferable. You can't transfer a registration mark if it'll make the vehicle look younger or if the registration number starts with Q or NIQ.

Who can apply?

You can apply to retain the vehicle's registration number only if you are the registered keeper, or the person who is about to become the registered keeper, of the vehicle. If the registration number is being transferred to another person's vehicle, both registered keepers must sign the form.

What are the conditions for transfer?

Vehicles must be currently registered in the UK, subject to annual testing (i.e. MOT test or Goods Vehicle Test (GVT)), currently taxed and available for inspection.

Untaxed and taxed vehicles

If the donor vehicle (i.e. the vehicle you're transferring from) isn't taxed, you can still apply as long as:

  • You've made a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) and there's no break between the start of the SORN and the date that the vehicle tax expires
  • The vehicle tax has run out (not refunded) no more than 12 months before the date that you apply to transfer

The recipient vehicle (i.e. the vehicle you're transferring to) must be taxed.

Vehicles registered in Northern Ireland

A registration number can be transferred between vehicles even if one of the vehicles is registered in Northern Ireland (NI), as long as both vehicles meet the above requirements. Contact the DVLA for more information.

How do I apply?

You need to complete a form V317 – either in paper form V317 and send it to the address on the form or online.

You also need to enclose the following documents with your application:

  • The registration certificates V5C or V5CNI of both vehicles. If you've bought the vehicle and you haven't yet received the registration certificate, then enclose the new keeper supplement (V5C/2 or V5C/2NI) and an application for the registration certificate (V62).
  • A test certificate (MOT) where the vehicle is a car or motorcycle over 3 years old (or over 4 in Northern Ireland), a heavy goods vehicle over one year old, or a light goods vehicle over 3 years old (NI). These have to be enclosed for both vehicles.
  • The transfer fee.

If either vehicle needs taxing, you'll also need to enclose:

  • An application for vehicle tax V10 (or V85 if it is a heavy goods vehicle) or the reminder V11 or V11NI.
  • An insurance certificate.
  • The vehicle tax payment (you can find the current rates on the GOV.UK website.

What happens next?

If the vehicles need to be inspected, the DVLA will contact you to arrange this. Otherwise, your application should be approved within 2 weeks.

The DVLA in Swansea will then send you:

  • A letter confirming the old registration number
  • New registration certificates for both vehicles showing the new and old registration numbers
  • A number plate authorisation letter (V948) to get your number plates made up
  • A replacement MOT or GVT certificate

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