Skip to main content

No ministry plates; no MOT

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Vehicle testing

Ministry plate

Before you take a commercial vehicle for its annual test, you must have a plating certificate – also known as a ministry plate – that shows the permitted axle and gross vehicle weights.

This is listed as part of the process in the DVLA’s V355 guidance notes and Automated First Registration and Licensing (AFRL) dealer procedures guide, when you first register your vehicle.

If you’ve bought a new vehicle from a dealer or manufacturer who registered it, it’s worth checking that the correct details were submitted to DVSA at the time of registration and the plating certificate is included. If not, you’ll have to apply for one before you can take your vehicle to annual test.

To get your plating certificates, you must email your European Community Whole Vehicle Type (ECWVTA), National Small Series Type Approval, or Individual Vehicle Approval certificates to or post them to:

DVSA Testing and Support Services
Padley Road

In your covering note, you must include:

a) From all applicants:

  • Registration number
  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Date of registration
  • Name and address of who the plating documents should be sent to
  • The reduced revenue weight if it’s lower than the design weight

b)   From applicants who are submitting a certificate of conformity (new vehicles):

  • The function e.g. rigid, artic or drawbar
  • The brake system type e.g. air/hydraulic
  • The service break system ‘split’ arrangement
  • The manufacturers designated secondary brake
  • If there is more than one driven axle, is it fitted with a third differential?
  • Is a transmission brake fitted?

We will create the plates and will usually be able to issue you with them within 16 weeks of receipt of your certificates.


Sharing and comments

Share this page


  1. Comment by Ash posted on

    With respect and professional driver, please note in Section B the word "ARCTIC" is not correct, though I understand what it is refering to, which is an Articulated Vehicle Lorry in short "ARTIC"

    • Replies to Ash>

      Comment by Moving On posted on

      Hi Ash,

      Thanks for pointing this out. The post has now been corrected.



  2. Comment by Peter Gallagher posted on

    Would it be possible for this information to be put online and when or if the vehicle is stopped the enforcment officer would simply check the vehicle details via an Ipad or similar device. This would also be checked at MOT thus taking the burden away from transport companies as sometimes the plates do not always arrive.
    I know that you rely on the dealers sending you the information in the first instance so if that process could be made any easier then that might help going forward.
    I find the process of chasing VTG plates quite easy as the team i deal with are very helpful but it still takes time to do this.

    • Replies to Peter Gallagher>

      Comment by Sam Stannard posted on

      In todays digital age why are plates needed? surely the information should be electronically stored. Its embarrasing that any paperwork needs to be taken to test. The DVSA really needs to embrace technology, its already been signinifcantly left behind. Why are copy MOTs still needed for HGVs? surely they should be on the main database like cars by now....
      Rant over

  3. Comment by Terry Grass posted on

    We have copies of all our plating certs and if 1 is lost or stolen a couple of days prior to test then it is not possible to get replacement docs ready for test, so you should be able to show the copy or they can check online to make sure you have applied for replacements.
    They can also check the Id number to to cross reference.
    Tests are hard enough to get at short notice as it is so to not get tested for not showing a plate is a bit harsh in my opinion.

  4. Comment by Trev Thomas MOSE.MIRTE posted on

    Hi how does it take 16 weeks to create a plate?What if the vehicle was needed? There must be a better system to do this as we are in the 21st century