Can I Scrap My Car Without A Logbook? 


When thinking about scrapping a car, there are a few things you need to have and do to ensure that the process is above board and legal. This includes specific documentation and detail about not only the car but yourself. 

Without the correct documentation, there are many things that you’re unable to do as a car owner, which is why it’s important to keep your essential records safe. That said, many people in the UK have misplaced or lost their logbooks. If this is you, you may wonder if you can still scrap your car without it. 

Here’s more information about if you need a logbook, the other stuff you may need, and the process you should follow to ensure the scrappage is legal.

Do you need a logbook to scrap a car? 

When scrapping a car, you do not need the logbook when completing the process. This means that if you’ve lost this piece of documentation – also known as a V5C – you don’t need to go through the hassle of getting a new logbook to scrap your car. 

You only need a logbook when selling or transferring the car to new ownership. As the vehicle is being destroyed when you scrap it, it means that a logbook isn’t required. 

That said, having a logbook will make the scrapping process a lot easier, as this document will make it easy to prove ownership, and it also contains a number needed to inform the DVLA that the car has been scrapped. 

To scrap a car without a logbook, you need to have a few other pieces of documentation for the sale to go through. This includes things that prove your identity and ownership of the car. 

If you’re scraping your car with or without a logbook, make sure that you’re doing so legally, using a registered and official scrapyard that completes the process in the proper way. 

What do you need to scrap a car? 

If you haven’t got a logbook, you still need to bring a few things with you if you’re trying to scrap a car legally and properly. 

When you arrive at the ATF, you must have a photo ID and proof of your address. This can be a license and a utility bill, for example. 

In addition, you may also need to bring proof that you’re the car’s owner. Simply owning the car’s keys is enough to show that you’re the owner, but you may also need to bring the original purchase receipt to make it clear. 

If you’re scrapping the car on someone else’s behalf, you need to bring written permission that you’re allowed to scrap the vehicle. You also need to show proof that you’re associated with the owner in some way, such as being a relative or co-worker, and you’ll also need to bring the bank details of the person or company so that they can be paid for the scrap.

The process of legally scrapping a car

If you want to scrap your car legally and avoid any fines or wrongdoing, then there’s a specific process you should follow to ensure everything is above board and legal. 

Before you go to scrap your car, you first need to de-register the license plate. You do this by informing the DVLA that the number plate is now off the road, meaning it can’t be used legally. It’s important that you do this after you last plan to use the car, as you won’t be able to legally drive the car once you’ve told the DVLA that the license plate is off the road. 

This step is important as it prevents the illegal practice of having the number plate taken off a scrapped car and placed on a different vehicle so that it can avoid tax or detection. 

After this step, you need to take the vehicle to an ATF. This is an Authorised Treatment Facility, and it became a legal requirement in 2005 that you use these companies and businesses. These sites have been licensed by the Environment Agency and ensure that the scrapping process meets specific standards. 

Once at the ATF, you’ll need to show the required documentation to ensure you can scrap the car. Once the vehicle has been scrapped, you’ll receive payment in your bank account. This is the only way you can receive money from a scrap yard, as cash payments have been outlawed as they’re harder to track. 

Payment may take a few days to be processed and hit your bank account, although it should be quick in most cases. Once you’ve received your money for the scrap car, you need to inform the DVLA quickly that the car has been scrapped. This allows them to update their records; if you don’t, you can be fined £1,000 from them. A logbook makes informing the DVLA easier, but you can also do it by posting a letter. 

The final thing you need to ensure the process is legal is a certificate of destruction. This should be emailed to you, but it may take about a week to arrive. You must receive this, as it can be used as proof that the car has been destroyed properly. 

If even one stage of this process isn’t followed and is different, it may indicate that the scrap company you’re using isn’t legitimate and may not be disposing of your car properly. If you’re offered cash, be sure to turn it down, as accepting it will make you complicit with the crime, and you should also chase up for a certificate of destruction if you don’t receive one within a week. 

By following this process, you’ll ensure that you can scrap a car properly, with or without a logbook for the vehicle.  

Scrapping A Car Without A Logbook FAQS

What is a logbook?

A vehicle’s logbook is a document that shows your ownership of the car and has details of all the past owners of the car, too, allowing you to see an accurate history of the vehicle. 

In addition to this, the logbook will also include information such as the vehicle’s make, model, engine, and more. 

The logbook may also be referred to as a V5C, and keeping it safe and secure will make things much easier for a car owner. 

What to do if I’ve lost my logbook?

If you’ve lost your logbook or it’s been damaged beyond use, you can easily replace it by requesting a new one. This costs about £25 and is a good thing to do, as you’ll find that it’ll be a lot easier to sell or scrap a car with this piece of critical documentation.

What documents do I need to scrap my car? 

Although you can scrap a car without a logbook, there are a few other pieces of documentation you need to legally scrap your car. The major thing you need is photo identification and proof of address. This can be from a passport or driving license. The documentation needs to be up-to-date, and it’s also a good idea to bring proof of address, like a utility bill, for assurance. 

You’ll also need proof that you own the car on some occasions, especially if you don’t have the logbook. In most cases, owning the car’s keys is enough to prove that, but you may also need the original bill. 

For the scrap to be considered legal, you must be given a certificate of destruction. This will be sent via post within seven days. If you don’t receive it, it may be a sign that the scrap wasn’t above board.

What do I need to do after my car has been scrapped?

After your car has been scrapped, you need to inform the DVLA that it’s been taken off the road so that they can update their records. You need to do this immediately, as not doing so can result in a hefty fine. 

If you have your logbook, this can be done online by inputting your 11-digit reference number from the logbook. If you don’t have a V5C, you’ll need to use alternative methods to inform them.

How do I inform the DVLA my car has been scrapped without a logbook?

Although it will be much easier to inform the DVLA that your car has been scraped with a logbook, you’re still able to inform them, and it’s your duty to; otherwise, you could get a fine of £1,000. 

To inform the DVLA without a logbook, you need to write and send a letter to the organisation informing them of the sale while also including crucial information about the car, such as its registration number, make and model, the date of scrappage, and the name and address of the scrapyard or insurance company that you’re scrapping your car with. 

How much can I get from scrapping my car?

The value you can get from a scrap car will alter a fair bit depending on its size, the value of the engine, and a few other things. The average payments from a scrap car vary between £150 to £300. 

These values are pretty low compared to the average price of a second-hand car, meaning that scraping your car is only a financially good option if your car is a non-starter or cannot fetch a price more than this average when sold privately.

Where am I allowed to scrap my car?

You’re only allowed to scrap your car at a registered ATF, and it is illegal to scrap your vehicle anywhere else. This is because using registered ATFs ensures that everything can be monitored and ensures that no illegal activity is taking place and that the car is destroyed and scrapped properly. 

Remember that before you take a car to be scrapped at an ATF, you must first apply online to take the number plate off the road. This prevents illegal situations where the registration plate is used on different cars.

Can I get cash when I scrap my car?

Since 2013, you have not been able to get cash for a scrapped car, with the preferred payment method instead being through bank transfer. 

This is in place to stop rouge and illegal scrapping, as payments through a bank make it easier to trace the money. If you are offered cash when you go to scrap a car, that’s a tell tail sign that the company isn’t legitimate and will not be scrapping your car in the approved way. 

Although it may be tempting to accept cash as it’s more convenient for many, you should avoid it as it is a criminal offence. 

Can I scrap someone else’s car?

You can scrap someone else’s car on their behalf as long as you have permission from the owner and the right documentation. To scrap someone else’s car, you need to prove that you’re associated in some way by either being a relative, work colleague, or friend. 

Once you’ve proved this, you’ll also need several other documents that prove who the car belongs to, as well as your own identity. A logbook is optional in this scenario, just as it is when scrapping your own vehicle, although you will need something that proves the identity of the owner and something that indicates that the scrappage has been approved.

Do you have to pay to scrap a car?

Usually, the scrappage service offered by the ATF is free, meaning that you don’t have to pay any kind of fees and can keep all the money made from the scrap metal value of the car. 

Instead of paying a fee, registered scrap metal companies get their money by stripping the car, selling on any parts (providing that the vehicle is in the right write-off category) and then selling on the metal from the car.

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