Institute of Transport Administration

Educating Transport Management since 1944


Self-driving vehicles set to be on roads by 2026 as Automated Vehicles Act becomes law

27th May 2024

Transport goods in Europe in vans or car and trailers

23rd May 2024

Update on Driver CPC reforms

22nd May 2024

New laws to be introduced to prosecute dangerous cyclists

16th May 2024

View all news »

Chickens and man flu top tax evaders’ excuses

11 Mar 2020

DVLA has released some of the more inventive excuses that people have used this year for not taxing their vehicles.


“I can’t tax my van because it’s full of chickens…” was just one of the excuses people used this year for not taxing their vehicles, according to information published today by the DVLA.


Some of the more inventive excuses are listed below (spoiler alert, none of them worked):

  • 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 ‘til 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)

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 still send reminders to motorists when their vehicle tax is due. However, they can also check when their vehicle tax is due 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by going to the Vehicle Enquiry Service on GOV.UK.


It’s easy to check when vehicle tax is due on Amazon Alexa by downloading the skill. Motorists can also ask their Google Home, Android mobile phone or Android tablet to “Talk to DVLA” or “Ask DVLA”.


Motorists can also tax their vehicle online or by phoning 0300 123 4321 on the automated 24 hour service.