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Motor Salvage Operators

Motor Salvage Operators Regulations
Vehicle crime is cited as being one of the largest single categories of recorded crime. To make it more difficult for criminals to dispose of stolen vehicles, the Vehicle (Crimes) Act 2001 and The Motor Salvage Operators Regulations 2002 have been introduced.

Motor salvage operators are now required to:

  • register with the borough Council in whose area they are operating
  • maintain appropriate records of all vehicle purchases and disposals
  • carry out full identification checks of vendors and purchasers; and
  • allow the police (and other investigators) the right of entry to the premises and the right of search. A warrant is not required where the police require entry to a registered premise.

The motor salvage operators will not be able to carry out their business unless they have registered with the local borough Council. It is an offence to operate a motor salvage business that has not been registered. Summary conviction of this offence may lead to a fine not exceeding level 5 (currently £5000) on the standard scale.

To register a motor salvage operator please use the application form at the bottom of the page. Alternatively, a paper version is available on request.

Definition of a Motor Salvage Operator
A person shall be carrying on business as a motor salvage operator if he carries on business that consists:
a) wholly or partly in the recovery for re-use or sale of salvageable parts from motor vehicles and the subsequent sale or other disposal for scrap of the remainder of the vehicles concerned;
b) wholly or mainly in the purchase of written-off vehicles and their subsequent repair and re-sale;
c) wholly or mainly in the sale or purchase of motor vehicles which are to be the subject (whether immediately or on a subsequent re-sale) of any of the activities mentioned in (a) or (b); or
d) wholly or mainly in activities falling within paragraphs (b) and (c)

Period of registration
Registration of the motor salvage operation is valid for three years starting from the date that the entry was made in the Council's "Register of Motor Salvage Operators". If the motor salvage operator wishes to continue in the uninterrupted functioning of its motor salvage activities, it must submit a valid application for the renewal of its registration to the local Council before cessation of the existing registration period. An operator is deemed to have ceased to be registered if they have not made an application of their existing registration.

Determination of registration
In deciding whether to approve registration, the Council must be satisfied that the applicant is a 'fit and proper' person, taking into account:

Various unspent convictions, including the offences of -
a) theft or attempted theft of or from a motor vehicles, contrary to Section 1 of the Theft Act 1968;
b) taking a motor vehicle without consent, contrary to Section 12 of the Theft Act 1968;
c) aggravated vehicle taking, contrary to Section 12A of the Theft Act 1968;
d) handling stolen goods, contrary to Section 22 of the Theft Act 1968;
e) going equipped to steal or take a motor vehicle, contrary to Section 25 of the Theft Act 1968;
f) interference with a motor vehicle, contrary to Section 9 of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981;
g) tampering with a motor vehicle, contrary to Section 25 of the Road Traffic Act 1988;
h) convictions for offences under Part 1 of the Vehicle Crimes Act 2001.

The Act also allows for a local authority to cancel a person’s registration if they are satisfied that he is not a fit and proper person to carry on the business as a motor salvage operator.

Where it is the Council's decision to refuse or cancel registration, it must serve a notice on the applicant informing them of their intention to do so, the reasons why, and the period in which the applicant can make representation to the Council (not less than 14 days). Representations may be made orally or in writing.

If after representations have been made the Council decides to proceed with the refusal or cancellation of the registration, they must serve a notice on the applicant informing them of their decision, and also providing them with details relating to their rights of appeal against the decision.

Fees for registration or renewal of registration
A fee of £120  is payable by the applicant on the submission of an application seeking registration. The fee has been set to recover the costs incurred by the processing the application for registration of the premise.

Details required to be kept on the Motor Salvage Register are:

  • The full name and date of birth of the motor salvage operator, the full names and dates of birth of all the directors if the business is undertaken by a corporate body, or the full names and dates of birth of all the partners if the business is undertaken by a partnership;
  • The address of the operator's usual place of residence; or that for each partner where the operator is a partnership; or if the operator is a corporate body, the address of the registered or principal office and,
  • The address of each place in the Borough of Eastleigh  which is occupied by the motor salvage operation wholly, mainly or partly for the purpose for carrying the business activity.


Public Register
The information contained within the register is readily available to the public and may be viewed Monday to Friday during normal office hours at the Eastleigh Borough Council Offices, Eastleigh House, Upper Market Street, Eastleigh SO50 9YN. 

For further information on motor salvage operation regulation go to the Crime Reduction website

For further information contact us

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