On January 1 1921, the first log book was introduced following the Roads Act 1920. This means that the vehicle log book has been used for just over 100 years. Your V5C log book is used to prove you are the registered keeper of your vehicle. With that, you will be responsible for registering and taxing the vehicle. However, it does not necessarily mean you own the car.
Your vehicle log book V5C is also used to prove the car is registered with the Driver and Vehicle License Agency (DVLA). Your car log book also provides information about your car. For example:
- The name and address of the registered keeper
- Date of registration
- Number of previous keepers
- The make and model of the vehicle
- The vehicle colour
- The engine size of the car
This is essential information when buying and selling a car. For example, if the information on the car log book does not match the car you are trying to buy, it may indicate that it is a stolen car.
Despite being used for over 100 years, many people do not know what to do when they lose their log book. This article will explain the best way to get a replacement log book and what to do if it is stolen, damaged or destroyed.
How do I get a replacement log book?
There are several ways that you can apply for a new log book. Whether over the phone, online or by post, the process is simple, but it does include a charge.
How do I apply for a replacement log book by phone?
If you are already registered as the keeper, you can phone the DVLA for a replacement log book. The contact details for this are below:
DVLA Vehicle Enquiries
Telephone: 0300 790 6802
Monday to Friday, 8am to 7pm
Saturdays, 8am to 2pm
You will need to use a credit or debit card to pay the £25 fee over the phone. It will take up to six weeks for the replacement V5C to arrive.
You can also use the DVLA webchat service to speak to an advisor. However, you cannot make a payment or set up a direct debit this way.
How do I apply for a replacement log book online?
The simplest way to get a replacement log book is to apply for a duplicate log book online. You can only use this service if you are already a registered keeper and have not changed any details. This service is not available if you:
- Need to change any of your details
- Do not have the vehicle in your possession
- Have already sent your log book (V5C) to the DVLA for changes to be made
- Posses the vehicle but it is registered as part of the DVLA fleet scheme
- Have a vehicle but it is registered abroad, including the Channel Islands (Jersey and Guernsey), Isle of Man or Ireland
Again there is a £25 non-refundable charge to use this online service. You can use a debit or credit card to pay online. You will need to have certain details handy when you apply online, including:
- Your vehicle registration number
- The VIN/chassis number of your vehicle
- Your name and postcode as registered on your log book
When you have the available information, simply follow the online prompts to apply. You should receive your new log book within five working days.
How do I get a replacement log book by post?
You can use the postal service to apply for a new log book. You will need to download, fill in and print a V62 form , which is essentially a lost log book form, to do this. There is a £25 fee to get a new log book this way. This can be paid via a cheque or postal order. This should be made payable to ‘DVLA, Swansea’.
The address you need to send the lost log book form too is:
You can also apply by post if you were not provided with a log book when you bought your car. Again download the same form and fill in your details. However, you need to provide your green new keeper slip when you send it.
Can I tax my car without a log book?
If you have lost your vehicle’s log book, you will not be able to tax your car until you find or replace it. However, if you still have your green new keeper slip, you can use this and the details on it to pay your car tax while waiting for your log book to arrive.
You could also apply for a V5C and tax your vehicle at the same time at the post office. You can check for free online on the post office website to see the nearest branch that offers this service.
You can also tax your car online if you still know your 11-digit number from the log book. Or if you know the 12-digit registration number from the new keeper slip or V11 reminder.
If you cannot tax your vehicle, you will have to declare it off-road. This is also known as a Statutory Off Road Notification or SORN.
How can I replace my other driving documents?
If you have lost your log book or it has been stolen, you may have also lost other documents. Many people like to keep their documents together, to know they are all in one place when needed. The downfall of this is that if you lose one, you often lose them all.
You can apply for a new driving licence using the GOV.UK portal. Residents in Northern Ireland can apply using the nidirect website. The replacement cost is £20. It is fairly simple to replace your car insurance documents. You can ring the insurer and ask for a replacement insurance certificate. Many people use an online portal and can access their documents via an app, so they don’t need to keep physical copies.
You can apply for a replacement MOT certificate for your vehicle online at GOV.UK. You need your vehicle registration number and 11-digit log book number to do this. You can also get a replacement from an MOT centre. It does not have to be the one you got your MOT from. The maximum charge for this is £10.
How do I register a vehicle?
In the UK, you have to register as a new keeper of a vehicle in your possession. This includes when a vehicle is bought, built, rebuilt, altered, or imported. In most cases, when you buy a new vehicle, a dealership will register the vehicle for you. After that, you will receive your V5C log book up to six weeks later. If the dealership does not register for you, you must do it yourself. If your car has not been registered before for any other reason, you will also have to register it. This may be the case if the vehicle is:
- A kit car
- Rebuilt or radically altered
- An old or classic vehicle
For a new vehicle registration, you need to fill out and send a V55/4 form to the DVLA. For a used or rebuilt vehicle, you fill out a V55/5 form. You will also need to provide a copy of at least one identity document. This could be:
- A passport
- A marriage certificate
- Civil partnership certificate
- Divorce or end of civil partnership document (decree nisi, decree absolute, conditional order, or final order)
- Your birth certificate
- Your current UK paper driving license (not the paper counterpart)
You will also need to supply a copy of a document proving your address. This could include:
- A utility bill (within the last 3 months)
- A statement from a bank or building society statement (within the last 3 months)
- A medical card
- A current council tax bill
How to get a replacement log book: Summary
Log books are an essential part of your vehicle’s paperwork. If you lose it, then you will need to replace it. Luckily, this doesn’t have to be a difficult process.
There are various options to replace a log book depending on your preference and the details you still have. For example, if you are already registered, you can phone the DVLA and pay £25 for a replacement. You can also apply for a duplicate log book online. This is only available if you are already registered. There is a GOV.UK online service to do this which costs £25.
You can also apply by post using a V62 form. Cheques or postal orders to cover the £25 fee should be made payable to ‘DVLA, Swansea’. If you didn’t get a log book when buying the car you can apply via the same method for free. You need to supply the green new keeper slip with your completed form.
Normally you cannot tax your car without your log book. If this is the case, you should declare your car SORN until you can pay your car tax. If you still have the green slip or know your 11-digit, or 12-digit reference number from a log book, or new keeper slip, you can use these details to pay car tax. You can also pay for your car tax and register for a new V5C at the same time at participating post offices.
Losing your vehicle’s log book can be a hassle, but luckily getting it replaced is relatively simple. Once you have your replacement documents, make sure to store them in a safe place, and you’re good to go.
- How to check if a car is insured
- SORN my car: How to declare a vehicle as off road
- Your guide to number plate retention
- Do I need to insure a car that’s off road?
- How do car tax bands work?
- What is E10 petrol?
- What is a Cat N car?
- What is a Cat S car?
- How long does an MOT take?
- How early can you do an MOT?
- DVLA: “900,000 drivers risking £1,000 fines!”
- Van selling advice: how to get the best price for your van
- What is commercial van insurance?
- Car insurance for new drivers
- How long does an MOT take?
- Motorcycle Mots: all you need to know
- Road tax exemption