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**NEWS ** September 2017 ** NEWS **

The 'new' Salvage CoP has now been published by ABI & will apparently come into effect on 1st October 2017.  There are quite a few changes, including the replacement of repairable salvage categories C & D (which were based on costs & salvage values) with N (non-structural) & S (structural) which are based upon the type & extent of damage.

We are aware that even at this late stage some changes are still being made to the CoP so we will comprehensively update this salvage section of the website after 1st October.



Motor salvage categorisation originates from the Code of Practice for the Disposal of Motor Salvage.  This COP is supported by a wide range of organisations, including the Association of British Insurers, MVDA, BVSF, DVLA, Police and Government.

There are 4 officially recognised salvage categories: category A, B, C & D.

The salvage category is a 'description' of the extent of the damage, expressed as the cost of repair compared to the pre-accident (or market) value of the vehicle.  But it also takes into consideration other important factors which don’t have a direct cost – such as whether there is a risk of the vehicle not being correctly repaired, or being used in illegal activities.

Summary of categories

Category A.  Vehicle is so severely damaged that it is valued only as scrap metal (no reusable parts - e.g. burnt-out vehicles).  Must be depolluted, crushed & a Certificate of Destruction issued.  The V5C registration document is destroyed by the insurer.

Category B.  Vehicle is so severely damaged that it cannot be economically & safely repaired, even using 2nd hand parts & cheap labour.  It can be dismantled for spare parts but the vehicle must be depolluted, the body shell crushed & a Certificate of Destruction issued.  The V5C registration document is destroyed by the insurer.

Category C.  Vehicle is damaged & although repairable the cost of repair exceeds its market value.  These tend to be older lower value vehicles, where the cost of even modest repairs (inc. new parts, labour, paint etc.) are greater than the vehicle value.  These vehicles can be repaired using second-hand or after-market parts & cheap labour.  The V5C registration document is destroyed by the insurer. A Vehicle Identity Check (VIC) is no longer required before a new V5C registration document is issued, so an application for a new V5C can be made immediately.  The replacement V5 remains FOC.  It is not possible to tax cat C salvage until a new registration document has been issued to the new owner.  The reissued V5C carries a warning that the vehicle has been ‘substantially damaged’.

Category D.  Vehicle is damaged but repairable, with the cost of repair being less than the market value of the vehicle, but the insurer decided not to repair.  These tend to be newer vehicles.  However, this category does NOT mean ‘lightly damaged’.  These vehicles do not require a VIC & the V5C registration document is sometimes supplied with the vehicle.

Category X.  This is sometimes used for stolen-recovered undamaged vehicles which are not recorded on MIAFTR.

Category U or N.  This is not a Salvage COP category, but is often used by salvage dealers to denote vehicles that have arisen via other means, such as part-exchange or purchase direct from the owner, & are not recorded on MIAFTR.  This does not mean that they are undamaged, only that they haven't been subject to an insurance claim.  These vehicles maybe older with higher mileage or have defects ranging from scratches/ dents, to major mechanical faults.


You should never purchase or attempt to repair category A or B salvage.  An insurer has stipulated, for very good reasons (which may not be obvious to you) that these vehicles must be destroyed.  Attempts to repair these vehicles and return them to the road in the UK or overseas is likely to cause problems.  As of 26th October 2015 it will not be possible to get a V5C for these vehicles (so it will not be possible to use them again).