The Latest Scrap Car Laws: The Rules You Should Follow To Avoid Fines

Posted on Wednesday 28 March 2018 by CarTakeBack

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It’s no use finding a fantastic price for scrapping your car and then running into fines and legal problems for not following the government legislation.

It’s essential you conform to the law around scrapping your car before you do so.

We’ve put together this handy guide on what you need to know before you scrap a car.

What do I need to know about scrapping my car?

You must only scrap your car at an Authorised Treatment Facility (ATF)

A recycling centre with an ATF licence means they are legally authorised to scrap cars. They will have the required equipment to safely dispose of your vehicle without damaging the environment.

It is illegal to recycle cars without the correct permit. Unfortunately, there are a few unlicensed scrapping businesses in Ireland. You can recognise them from their out-of-date online sites, mobile number contact only, and fake ‘Certificates of Destruction’ (these could be named something similar such as a ‘Destruction Certificate’).

Owners who do not deposit an end of life vehicle at an ATF could be given a €100 fine. Find out more here.

CarTakeBack branches across Ireland are all ATF licensed.

You can’t drive a car deemed as ‘unroadworthy’ 

If you attend your NCT, you may be advised that your car is dangerous and unsafe for the roads. You should no longer drive it, so arrange for the scrap service provider to collect the car from you.

Ensure you have your vehicle registration information

Car scrapping companies won’t trade vehicles that are unidentified. This is to help combat car theft trade.

You can only scrap a car if you have the right to dispose of it. Gather your Vehicle Registration Certificate (called "Vehicle Licensing Certificate" if it was issued before May ‘04) to prove vehicle ownership before scrapping your car.

If you’ve lost this, you can get a replacement by completing an RF134 form and getting it signed at a Garda station. You then need to send it to your local Motor Tax Office. 

Don’t leave your scrap at home

Scrap vehicles can sometimes be hazardous or contain toxic substances. When left, these can leak and cause environmental damage and harm in communities and homes - endangering animals and potentially children.

Make sure your scrap car is picked up by a registered car scrapping business so it can be correctly disposed of and recycled.

Make sure you receive a Certificate of Destruction

Once your car has been scrapped and recycled, ensure you get a ‘Certificate of Destruction’ to show that your vehicle has been properly disposed of.

This is an official Department of Transport document and gets issued to the registered owner of the car.

When you have this, you should keep it. The National Vehicle and Driver File is updated to show that your car has been recycled and correctly disposed of. You are no longer responsible for it.

If you have the certificate and your car has been scrapped (rather than returned to the road after fixing), there is no need for you to contact the Department of Transport in Shannon.

Specific offences surrounding these certificates can lead to fines of €1000. Find out more here.

Can I get a refund for my unused registration?

If there are at least 3 full months of Motor Tax left for your car, you can get a refund for the remaining complete months.

Apply for your refund at your local Motor Tax Office. You can fill out an RF120 form which should be authorised at your Garda Station. The form is then ready to be sent to your local Motor Tax Office, with your Certificate of Destruction.


Now you’re armed with the facts on how to lawfully dispose of your car – get recycling. It also drastically benefits our environment, find out how.


If you still have questions, you can find all of the answers in the following categories:

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