One-year MOT exemption in NI to go ahead

Exemptions will apply to private cars registered between 1 June 2019 and 31 May 2020 or 1 June 2017 and 31 May 2018 which have a valid MOT certificate

One-year MOT exemption in NI to go ahead
A crack in one of the affected lifts in Northern Ireland.

Over 100,000 cars will be eligible for the exemption, which comes into effect on 1 June, allowing motorists to continue to drive legally as long as the cars are roadworthy, taxed, and insured.

Motorists in Northern Ireland are currently waiting up to 72 days for an MOT. The delays began in 2019 when cracks were found in vehicle lifts at garages across Northern Ireland, affecting 48 out of 55 lifts. Then the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic caused further backlogs.

Infrastructure Minister John O’Dowd said on Tuesday:

“DVA staff have been working around the clock to tackle an increasingly high demand for MOT tests due to a growing population, a higher proportion of households with access to a vehicle and more older cars on the road.

“In each of the last two years, the DVA conducted more than 1.1 million vehicle tests – the highest numbers ever recorded. Indeed, there were just seven days in 2023 when the DVA did not offer MOT appointments.

“A recruitment process is under way to help fill vacancies across DVA’s network of test centres and efforts have been made to reduce the number of no shows – approximately 50,000 customers failed to attend a booked appointment in each of the last two years, which places additional demand on this service.

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