The DVLA are introducing new rules on December 18th 2019 which mean that a personalised number plate on retention will be lost if the relevant certificates are left to expire. As a result, the plate will not be available for reissue to anyone else and will effectively disappear from use.
The new regulations affect certificates of entitlement (V750) and retention documents (V778) which allow for personalised number plates to be kept while not assigned to a vehicle. The V750 is used for the initial issue of a personalised registration while the V778 is used for retained registrations that have previously been used. If you completed one of these documents before March 9th 2015 they would have been valid for 1,2 or 3 years from the date of issue. If you completed these after March 9th 2015 they will be valid for 10 years from the date of issue.
At the moment, if either of these of these documents have expired, you can buy the right to use the private registration number again at a rate of £25 for each expired year. But from December 18th, this will no longer be the case and the DVLA be no longer renew out of date certificates.
With some personalised number plates changing hands for significant amounts of money, this could have large ramifications. In fact, the UK's most expensive number plate - 25 O - was sold in 2014 for an eye-watering £400,000.
Our advice is to check the expiry date on your documents and if your certificates have expired, renew them before the December 18th deadline. For more information on retained personalised number plates visit the gov.uk website.
For guidance on the rules and regulations surrounding black and silver number plates, visit our recent blog post which covers all aspects of the law, suppliers and advice on this issue.