Chickens and man flu: Top tax evaders’ excuses

One motorist claimed he couldn’t tax his vehicle because it was full of chickens. (Getty)

The DVLA has revealed some of the most bizarre excuses that motorists have used this year for not paying their car tax.

One motorist claimed he couldn’t tax his vehicle because it was full of chickens while another blamed his non-payment on being confined to bed with “man flu.”

An ice cream van driver on the wrong side of the law hoped that a prison sentence would save him six months of tax payments.

It’s safe to say none of these wild excuses worked.

Of those who tried to avoid paying, here are the most implausible excuses:

  • I’m about to start a prison sentence, so is there any way you could hang on to my ice cream van for six months ‘till I get out?

  • I would’ve taxed my van but my bitter ex put four live chickens in it.

  • I know it was untaxed, but I didn’t think you’d clamp cars in a heatwave.

  • I forgot to tax it as I was looking after the kids (aged 19 and 26).

  • I couldn’t tax my car as I’ve had man flu and have been stuck in bed for 4 weeks.

  • I would’ve taxed the car, but you clamped it so early in the morning (the car was clamped at lunchtime).

All drivers must tax their vehicles or declare that they have been taken off the road. Those who fail to do so are issued with a £100 ($128) fixed penalty notice by the DVLA, and their vehicle could be clamped.

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The latest figures from the Department for Transport published in December 2019 show 98.4% of vehicles on the road are taxed correctly — a 0.2% decrease in evasion since 2017.

DVLA chief executive Julie Lennard said: “While we know that the vast majority of motorists tax their cars on time, there are still some who choose not to.

“Taxing your car is so easy to do online, so there really is no excuse — even if it is filled with chickens.”

The DVLA sends reminders to drivers when their vehicle tax is due but they can also check when their vehicle tax is due by going to the Vehicle Enquiry Service on GOV.UK.