What Are My Legal Obligations When Driving In The UK?

Possessing a car or another vehicle can give the owner a whole lot of freedom that public transport simply does not offer. In addition to this, many rely on their motorcycle or car to get them to work, drive them round to family and friends’ house and even take them on holiday.

Despite these plus sides, the cost of owning and running a vehicle in the UK can be very expensive, and there are a number of obligations that must be adhered to when driving or riding in the UK. Here are the main things you need to remember when operating a vehicle in the country in order to stay on the right side of the law.

First of all, any driver or rider in the UK must meet certain standards before being able to be on the roads. One of these is having the correct driving license for the vehicle they are operating. If you are not sure about this, the DVLA is the best source of information, with the team at the department being able to explain all about your vehicle license and what exactly it permits you to do.

You must also have reached a minimum riding or driving age to take a vehicle onto the roads in the UK, and you must also meet the minimum eyesight requirements in order to operate a vehicle. This is to ensure the safety of the driver or riders as well as that of all other road users.

Learner drivers also have rules and legal obligations that need to be followed in order to use roads in the UK. In addition to the above points, any learner must have L plates displayed clearly on the vehicle, or alternatively D plates if learning to drive in Wales.

Car learners must also be accompanied by a qualified driver when in the vehicle, although this rule does not apply to learners learning to ride motorcycles for obvious reasons.

There are also many obligations that apply to the vehicle itself, leading a major reason why running a car or motorcycle in the UK can be so costly. One of these is vehicle tax, which must be paid every year in order to use the roads legally.

As vehicle tax is now managed online via an internet database, it can be easy to forget that there is car tax to pay due to the physical absence of a tax disc in the vehicle. With this in mind, there are now tax disc reminder services to help people remember their due dates.

These tax disc reminder services often work by printing out a ‘tax disc’ with details of the dates that renewal is due to be paid. This can then sit inside the windscreen of the car for easy reference, eliminating problems like forgetting that vehicle tax is due.

Tax disc reminder services often start around £3, making them very affordable for all people, even those on a tight budget. A tax disc reminder can be a great preventative measure, stopping you from paying far too much in fines if you do not renew your car tax in a timely manner.

As well as having valid vehicle tax, every car motorcycle must have a valid MOT certificate. How often this needs to be obtained will depend of the age of the vehicle, with many needing a new MOT each and every year to prove that the vehicle is roadworthy.

In addition to the tax disc reminder, many companies are now providing MOT reminder services that operate on the same principal as the tax one. This again allows the person using the service to avoid paying fines for having an out-of-date MOT certificate.

In addition to all of these, the vehicle being driven must be registered with the DVLA to order to permit use of it on the road. The car or motorcycle must also have a minimum of third party insurance in order to protect other road users from any damage caused by your vehicle and your driving.

There are certain minimum legal obligations that must be fulfilled in order to use a vehicle on the road in the UK. These range from having the correct license to having valid car tax and appropriate insurance. In all cases, services such as tax disc reminder and MOT reminder services can ensure that you stay on the right side of the law and avoid expensive fines.

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