Institute of Transport Administration

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Update on heavy vehicle test exemptions

21 Oct 2020


Vehicles and trailers with MOTs up to March 2021 are getting exemptions.


Have I got an exemption?

Eligible vehicles and trailers with November and December 2020 test dates (except first test vehicles) have now been given 3 or 12-month exemptions.

We expect to have all the remaining exemptions added to vehicles and trailers by early November 2020. First test vehicle and trailer exemptions can only be completed the month before they are due.


Exemption status


12-month exemption


  • Earned Recognition operator (whole fleet)
  • Operator in green OCRS roadworthiness band with 50 or more roadworthiness events and a calculated roadworthiness base score of 1.3 or lower on 27 July 2020
  • Vehicle or trailer up to 2 years old

3-month exemption

  • Not previously had an exemption and not eligible for a 12-month exemption (see above)


You can use MOT test history to find out your new test expiry date.


You can also download a spreadsheet of all vehicles and trailers that have had exemptions applied to their original October, November and December 2020 test dates at:  


The spreadsheet does not contain vehicles and trailers due their first test. You will need to check the MOT history to see if your MOT exemption has been applied.


Which vehicles/trailers need a test in November 2020?

Mandatory tests will be required for vehicles and trailers which do not qualify for a longer exemption. These are:

  • Vehicles given a 3-month exemption in August 2020

You can use MOT test history to check your vehicle and trailer test expiry dates.


What advice has been given to ATFs?

We continue to remind ATFs about the vehicle/trailer tests they should prioritise. The highest priority are those which legally need a test.

  1. Vehicles/trailers legally due a test within a month
  2. Vehicles/trailers going on international journeys
  3. Dangerous goods vehicles
  4. Specialist vehicle types (e.g. refuse vehicles, gritters)
  5. Prohibition clearances

What if I am unable to get a test booking?

We’re making more testing staff available to ATFs at short notice. So, it’s worth checking availability several times a range of ATFs.


To find ATFs within an area, visit our Book a lorry, bus or trailer annual test page.