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Trailer registration / insurance

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Hello chaps! Been asked a question by a friend of mine: jolly good egg he is too, although he lives in Germany and is having a spot of bother with the rules over there. It seems there is a bit of a do with his Sankey trailer - which he uses on a handful of occasions each year to cart his chattels behind the Series 3 Land Rover. Brings it to Beltring - that sort of caper.

Well, the powers-that-be in the Fatherland tell him there's a problem with registration - because the trailer is British and of "unknown registration" But... if said trailer has British insurance there is no need for German registration. This is what he's telling me. I must admit I'm thoroughly confused by the whole bally episode. Is there a way around this for him?

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Is he German (or a permanent resident) and is the vehicle he uses to tow the trailer registered in Germany? If so then the trailer would need to be registered in Germany in my opinion. Where it is insured is probably not so important as long as the insurance provides cover in Germany.

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The Sankey is of 'Unknown registration'?


Trailers would have been issued with the military Equipment Registration Mark (ERM) or numberplate to civies. They would have had a log book with the MoD. Records for the trailer would almost certainly be recorded to some extent on the Merlin System. Therefor the Defense Procurement Agency should be able to give him details on official paper for the German Authorities?


Ask him to look for/ at the chassis plate on the trailer chassis as this should have the ERM on it.

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  • 2 months later...

He may well find it very difficult to register a trailer in Germany.

To register the trailer has to be constructed in accordance with the type approval requirements (remember they have been following these rules in most of mainland Europe for a long time) , trailers which were originally were exempted from this requirement (and the C & U regs ) such as goverment or military vehicles, prove exceptionally difficult to get through as th construction methods used dont always suit normal road use. It is likely that the Authorities will require the trailer to be modified in accordance with the latest regs, so it can comply before issueing registration.

I am not aware of any exceptions in the legislation that allows exceptions for historic vehicles , but if there is I would be pleased to know.

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