DVLAs reclassification of 'AC Cobra 289' does not lead to successful claim.

Our Dispute Resolution (Litigation) Team explore whether the DVLA are liable for any loss in the reclassification of a vehicle.

One can see the problem – that you buy a historic vehicle, which because of its historic registration enhances its value but the DVLA then reclassify it, removing the attractive categorisation and the vehicle therefore drops in value.  It might be easy to point to the DVLA and say that they should cover your loss.

However in these circumstances there is no case to be had.  The Court of Appeal just dealt with that precise situation.  An AC Cobra 289 (the vehicle) had been classified as historic, but the DVLA subsequently had doubts, investigated and re-classified it.  The Claimant who had bought the vehicle in the intervening period and paid a tidy £250,000 for it, saw the value drop.  A claim was mounted against the DVLA.

The Court of Appeal concluded that the DVLA owned no duty to prospective purchasers to alert them of its concerns.  Because no duty arise, there could be no breach of duty and no loss.  The claim failed.

If you need advice or assistance on any claim, contact our expert dispute resolution lawyers.  They will be pleased to offer you a free initial telephone consultation.