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New driving laws for 2023: what business owners need to know

2-minute read

New driving laws UK 2023
Catriona Smith

Catriona Smith

19 December 2022

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The government often introduces new driving laws to improve road safety. It’s important to know what’s changed, and what to expect in the future, so you’re not caught out by unexpected fines and penalty points.

4 driving laws for 2023 you should know

If you use a vehicle for work, here are four new driving laws for 2023 – from expanding clean air zones to a fuel duty increase.

London’s ULEZ is expanding

London is expanding its ultra low emissions zone back from 29 August 2023 to include everything within the Greater London Authority boundary.

Drivers will need to pay £12.50 a day if their car doesn’t meet the required emissions and safety standards – use TFL’s tool to check your vehicle.

Clean air zones, also called low emission zones, are designed to improve air quality and reduce emissions in city centres.

Other clean air zones have been steadily coming in across the UK, and you can expect to see more in 2023, including:

  • Sheffield – from 27 February 2023
  • Greater Manchester – plans under review
  • Tyneside (Newcastle and Gateshead) – from 30 January 2023

Keep an eye on updates from your local authority about low emissions zones and new road laws.

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Car scrappage schemes for businesses in London

From 30 January 2023, London drivers can apply for a grant to help them meet the emissions standards as the ULEZ expands later in the year.

Successful applicants will get a grant to scrap or retrofit their vehicle so they use a cleaner, greener mode of transport.

The scheme is also open to small businesses and sole traders operating in the 32 London boroughs.

Read more about the TFL car scrappage scheme.

Birmingham City Council is also offering a car scrappage scheme to support people using the city’s Clean Air Zone. Meanwhile, Renault offers a ‘new for old’ scheme.

While there isn’t currently a national scheme, keep an eye on your local authority and vehicle manufacturer to see if anything comes in near you.

Fuel duty could increase by 23% in March

While nothing was mentioned in the Autumn Statement, the Office for Budget Responsibility has said they expect fuel duty to increase by 23 per cent in late March – this would add 12p a litre onto the cost of fuel.

The government cut petrol and diesel tax for one year in the 2022 Spring Statement. They’ve not confirmed the increase though, so any update on this is likely to come in the 2023 Spring Statement.

Electric car charging at home
Photograph: Graham King/

Electric vehicles pay 0% Vehicle Excise Duty (for now)

We reported in 2022 that the government was looking into how road pricing can work for electric vehicles, which currently don’t pay road tax.

Electric vehicle drivers will be pleased to know that this 0 per cent rate will continue throughout 2023 and 2025. But from 2025, a Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) charge will apply to all electric cars, vans, and motorcycles – including those used by businesses.

Charges will come in from 1 April 2025 and will be £10 for the first year.

The current VED rate for diesel and petrol vehicles is £165.

Considering buying an electric vehicle? Read our guide to electric cars and vans for business owners.

Have you heard about any other new driving rules for 2023? Let us know in the comments below.

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Catriona Smith

Written by

Catriona Smith

Catriona Smith is a content and marketing professional with 12 years’ experience across the financial services, higher education, and insurance sectors. She’s also a trained NCTJ Gold Standard journalist. As a Senior Copywriter at Simply Business, Catriona has in-depth knowledge of small business concerns and specialises in tax, marketing, and business operations. Catriona lives in the seaside city of Brighton where she’s also a freelance yoga teacher.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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