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Do you know how to tell DVLA online that you’ve sold or transferred your vehicle?  

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Features

Since we launched our online Tell DVLA you've sold, transferred or bought a vehicle service back in 2015 more than 40 million transactions have been processed.

Making it easy for users

We wanted to make telling us you’ve sold, transferred or bought a vehicle as quick and easy as possible. Using your feedback we’ve made the service simple, putting the needs of customers, both public and trade first. Telling us you’ve changed a vehicle is now quicker and easier than ever.

By using the online service, the DVLA database is updated immediately, and you get instant confirmation by email without having to send any documents in the post.

You’ll automatically receive a refund for any full remaining months of vehicle tax, this will be sent to the address on your V5C vehicle registration certificate (log book). Your online notification will cancel any Direct Debit you’ve set up for your vehicle tax – it’s as easy as that.

One tip to make sure the process does run this smoothly is to make sure the address on your V5C registration certificate is the correct one.

If you’ve moved, you can tell DVLA straight away by using this service:

Over the past 12 months, over 70% of vehicle keepers told us online that they’ve sold, bought, or transferred a vehicle.

The service is available 7am to 7pm, 7 days a week.

Our easy step by step guide to tell us you’ve sold or transferred a vehicle privately

All you need is the 11-digit document reference number from your vehicle V5C (log book).

  1. Go to
  2. Tell us you’ve sold it privately to a person or business.
  3. Remember to give the full name (not initials) and address of the new keeper.
  4. Give the new keeper the green ‘new keeper’ slip (V5C/2) so they can tax the vehicle.

If you sell your vehicle to a motor trader or garage or need to tell us the vehicle is scrapped or written off

With your consent, the trader can tell DVLA that you’ve sold the vehicle to them online - just give them the V5C and ask them to use the online service to tell us straight away. You, as the vehicle keeper, are legally responsible for the vehicle until the motor trader or garage informs us of the sale and your details have been removed from the vehicle record.

If you prefer, you can tell DVLA online that you’ve sold or transferred a vehicle yourself by using the 11-digit document reference number on the yellow slip (V5C/3).

You can also use this service to tell us about the scrapping of a vehicle and any insurance write-offs.

Protect yourself from fraud

Please keep your V5C (log book) safe. The V5C’s 11-digit document reference number is the key to using our services online and, like a credit card number, shouldn’t be shared, copied, or photographed.

What our service users have said

“Offering customers, the online option to inform DVLA of any changes, etc. is extremely helpful and very easy to use - especially during lockdown when we are unable to go out to post letters or documents. Please continue with this service. Thank you.”

“Very simple and easy to use. Great not to have to post a form.”

“Don't know how you can improve the service, because it's brilliant as it is.”

“Superb easy service 5 stars for this organisation.”

Be part of our research - join our online panel to help improve our services

We value customer feedback through our research and are looking for volunteers to test our services. To volunteer, join our online research panel.

In the meantime…

Check out our wide range of online services - they’re all quick and simple. I’ve highlighted just a few below:


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  1. Comment by MP Davie posted on

    Fine provided you still have the V5C but the dealer took mine from me whilst promising he would notify DVLA electronically himself so I do not have access to the information required to use this service. Surely make/model and VRM should be sufficient to use this service.

    • Replies to MP Davie>

      Comment by Julie posted on

      Hello thanks for getting in touch.

      We ask for the 11-digit reference number to be sure the registered keeper is notifying us of a vehicle’s sale. Otherwise someone could use the service to get a fraudulent copy of the V5C registration certificate (log book), putting your vehicle at risk of being stolen or cloned. For more information go to

  2. Comment by PETER Andrew SMITH posted on

    Great insight, concise and alarmingly easy
    Thank you.
    Could we possibly see an example for dealing with PRIVATE REGISTRATIONS, in all guises, please, No problem if not possible?

  3. Comment by Mark Barrow posted on

    Bit unclear on what we do disposing through auctions(rather than sold to motor dealer/garage) and for vehicles that get stolen and never recovered ...

    • Replies to Mark Barrow>

      Comment by Julie posted on

      Hello Mark, If you sell or transfer a vehicle through an auction you can either give your consent to the auctioneer to tell DVLA about the sale or tell us online yourself. A motor auctioneer is classed as a motor trader, and this is clearly highlighted, within the service. If your vehicle is stolen and your insurance company pays, you must tell DVLA it’s been sold to the insurance company. This page will tell you more

  4. Comment by Shane posted on

    Very good service and quick

  5. Comment by David Hamilton posted on

    Dvla are fantastic now so efficient in issue new log books and private plate transfers. Well done, maybe only improvement could be automatic email to say registration document has been issued and the date it's been done.

    • Replies to David Hamilton>

      Comment by Julie posted on

      Hi David, Thanks for your great feedback. When you tell us you have sold, transferred or bought a vehicle online you will receive a confirmation email. You can also check if a V5C registration certificate (log book) has been issued by using this link

  6. Comment by Chris Tong posted on

    this is a good idea, but can you tax a vehicle online with the v5c (green slip) otherwise there needs to be a couple of days grace period to allow the new owner to get it taxed. as post offices (which are in demise) are not open to tax vehicles on a Saturday afternoon, Sunday or bank holiday!

    • Replies to Chris Tong>

      Comment by Julie posted on

      Hi Chris. Yes, when you sell a vehicle give the new keeper the green ‘new keeper’ slip from a log book. They can tax the vehicle straight away using our online service which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.