What Should I Do If I Have Taxed My Car Online But It’s Not Showing?

The purpose of this blog post is to help its readers in being able to answer the question of what they can do if they have taxed their car online but it still doesn’t show on the DVLA website. To learn about this in detail, we will explore the potential reasons why car tax does not show online, the consequences of driving an untaxed car and suggest some actions that vehicle owners can take in such situations.

What Should I Do If I Have Taxed My Car Online But It’s Not Showing?

What you should do if you have taxed your car online but it does not show on the Driver and Vehicle License Agency’s (DVLA) website will depend on your circumstances. For instance, if you have just paid your car tax or Vehicle Excise Duty online, you must keep in mind that it usually takes 5 working days for paid car tax to appear on the DVLA’s website.

If you have recently purchased a car (whether new or used), you will need to confirm if the vehicle has been registered to your name. If you have purchased the car through a car dealer, they can assist you with the registration process. 

In case you have paid car tax after buying a vehicle from a friend or family; without involving a car dealer, you will also need to make sure that the vehicle’s ownership has been transferred to your name and is mentioned in the vehicle logbook.

There is also a possibility that you have either entered incorrect or incomplete information while attempting to pay your car tax online. Therefore, while you may assume that your car tax has been paid, it is still pending. 

You may need to check that you have added updated and correct information from the following documents while paying your car tax online:

  • vehicle registration certificate; V5C
  • V11 reminder from the DVLA
  • valid Ministry Of Transport (MOT) certificate 

In some cases, the reason for your car tax not showing online can be as simple as that the DVLA website or its server is temporarily down and you can try again in a few hours to confirm if your payment status has been updated.

Additionally, you can check the DVLA website or call them at 0300 790 6802, between 8 am to 7 pm, from Monday to Friday to inquire about the updates regarding the processing of your car tax payment.

Can I Drive My Car If The Car Tax Does Not Show Online?

You can only drive your car without the car tax showing online if you have proof of your car tax payment. This means that even if your car tax payment does not show online, you should have made the payment (either on time or in advance) to be able to drive a car on public roads.

If an untaxed vehicle is found on public roads, the registered owner of the vehicle will have to pay a fine of £80. If they fail to pay this fine according to the indicated due date on their slip, the penalty for driving an untaxed car will increase to £1,000. 

Car owners can also be taken to court for driving an untaxed vehicle on public roads or their vehicle can be clamped so that it cannot be driven on public roads until the fine is paid. 

If you are unsure of the reason(s) why your car tax is not showing online, you can contact the DVLA for inquiries.

How Long Do I Have To Wait For My Car Tax To Show Online?

According to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA), you may need to wait for at least 5 working days for renewed car tax to show online.

The DVLA takes monthly payments for car tax on the first day of each month. However, car owners can choose to make car tax payments on a monthly or six-monthly basis.

You can check the status of your car tax payment via the DVLA’s Vehicle Enquiry System

Why Is My Car Tax Payment Not Being Processed Online?

If your car tax payment fails to be processed online, you should check if any of the following situations apply to you:

  • your car’s MOT is due for renewal within a month 
  • your car was previously in the disabled car tax class and you need to change the tax class before paying the car tax
  • you are trying to make an advance payment of more than 2 months for your car tax
  • your car has not been registered with the DVLA either due to being a brand new vehicle or the registration has not been transferred from the previous owner 
  • you don’t have car insurance for your vehicle or your current car insurance has expired and is due for a renewal
  • you don’t have a vehicle logbook or V5C for your car; either because you have just purchased it from the dealer or the ownership has not been transferred from the previous owner
  • you don’t have the 12-digit reference number from your vehicle logbook, a V11 reminder from the DVLA or the green slip to pay your car tax

Can I Tax My Car Online In Advance?

Yes, you can tax your car in advance using an online payment system. Advance car tax payments can be made for the next 2 months before your current car tax expires. However, if your car tax expires at the end of the month, you can pay the amount by the 5th day of the month. These payments can either be through cheque, postal order, online or through direct debit.

If you are making an advance payment, you will need the following documents:

  • your vehicle registration certificate or logbook
  • an application for advance payment along with reasons 
  • complete V10 form for vehicle tax and V85 form in case of a heavy good vehicle
  • an MOT or goods vehicle testing (GVT) certificate (in case you need one) 
  • a cheque, postal order or banker’s draft with the full amount payable to DVLA Swansea


The discussion in the above article indicates the possible reasons why car tax may not appear on the DVLA website despite being paid. The most common reason is the fact that once a vehicle owner makes an online payment for car tax, it generally takes 5 working days for the paid status to appear on the DVLA website. If the status is not updated even after a week, it is advisable to contact the DVLA to check the reason(s) for the delay.


Check if a vehicle is taxed – GOV.UK

Why is my car not showing on the DVLA database? | OSV