If you're buying a car this weekend, you'll have to wait until Monday to tax (and drive) it.

Motorists planning to tax their vehicle this weekend may be in for a nasty shock as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) has confirmed that many of its services will be down from Friday afternoon.

Tax doesn't have to be taxing... But it often is:

The organisation, which is in charge of issuing much of a vehicle’s paperwork, says services including vehicle tax payments will be unavailable from 3pm on Friday, August 17, until 6am on Monday, August 20.

Vehicle tax, which is properly known as Vehicle Excise Duty (VED), is required for all vehicles, although some cars with low tailpipe emissions are eligible for free VED.

The news will come as a blow to motorists who are planning on buying a car this weekend, as well as those who have left it until the last minute to tax their vehicle. Driving an untaxed vehicle on the road is illegal.

Online Road Tax

According to the DVLA, the break in service is necessary because of “essential systems maintenance” and will affect “most services”, including the contact centre. And the problem isn’t just affecting online services, either. Motorists won’t be able to tax their cars even if they go through the Post Office.

Some services, however, will continue to be available, including the online licence sharing service, which replaced the photocard driving licence’s paper counterpart. Drivers will still be able to view their licence details online and share them with others, such as hire car firms or car dealerships.

Drivers will also be able to renew their photocard licences at the Post Office.

A statement from the DVLA read: “Due to essential systems maintenance, most of our services, including our contact centre, will be unavailable from 3pm on Friday, August 17 until 6am on Monday, August 20. We’re sorry for any inconvenience that this may cause.”

DVLA system maintenance