Motor vehicles

Created: 2014.02.27 / Updated: 2023.05.22 14:05

The number of motor vehicles the Mission possesses for the official use may not exceed reasonable quantities depending on the size of the Mission. For the personal use it is considered acceptable to register one motor vehicle with state diplomatic number plates per person and two - when accompanied by a spouse or a partner who is not a Lithuanian citizen or permanent resident of Lithuania.

According to the Lithuanian Road Traffic Rules, motor vehicles should have their headlights switched on the whole year round when driving. The driver and all the passengers are obliged to wear safety belts and to have reflection vest or a reflection arm strips for the emergency cases. The driver is not allowed to hold a mobile telephone in hands while driving.

Tax Exemption

In Lithuania, motor vehicles are included into the list of goods and services, which do not qualify for the refund of VAT, except those specified by the Ministry. If so, the reimbursement of VAT for motor vehicles follows the same procedure as for other goods and services (Chapter 4 "Value Added Tax and Excise Duty Exemptions/Procedure of refund").

Tax exemption for motor vehicles applies to the Missions, accredited and residing in Lithuania, members of diplomatic staff, administrative and technical staff, career consular officers and consular employees of the consular posts and their family members if they are not Lithuanian citizens or permanent residents of Lithuania, members of representations of international organizations, heads of European Union agencies, heads of their administrative divisions and their family members who enjoy diplomatic immunities and privileges under the international law or according to the agreement with the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter – privileged person).

The staff of the European Institute for Gender Equality is entitled to reimbursement of the VAT on the purchase of a motor car for personal use made during the first year of their employment, except those who have been living permanently in Lithuania during five last years.

Please note that in case an already exempted vehicle is sold or in any other way transferred into ownership within 3 years after its acquisition:

  • to a non-privileged person - the amount of the refunded VAT must be paid into the accumulation account of the Vilnius County State Tax Inspectorate within 20 working days from its sale or any other transfer into ownership or reduced by deducting from the VAT and/or excise duty amount refundable for the next period to the Mission or a member of the Mission respectively. After 3 years the vehicle can be sold without paying taxes back.
  • to another privileged person - it may be sold free of taxes. It is sufficient to change an ownership and reregister the vehicle.

Exemptions from Petrol Taxes

The VAT and excise duties paid on fuel shall be refunded only if special cards issued by the fuel vendor in the name of the Mission and a member of the Mission are used for effecting payment for the fuel.

Import as Part of Removal

Motor vehicles can be imported from a non-EU member state duty-free (without payment of Customs- duty and import-VAT) by a Mission for the official use and/or by the privileged person for a personal use if he/she changes the place of residence.

Vehicles brought into Lithuania as removal goods can be sold or otherwise transferred into the ownership duty-free after 3 years from the date of their import.

If a vehicle is sold or otherwise transferred into the ownership earlier than 3 years of its import:

  • to another privileged person – no Customs-duty and import-VAT taxes are required to pay;
  • to a non-privileged person – the seller is liable to pay the duties and taxes from which he/she has been exempted. The seller’s duty is to notify the local customs within 10 working days about the fact of changing the ownership. Customs calculates the taxes, which have to be paid according to the legislation of Lithuania.

Legislation:

  1. 2007m. rugpjūčio 14 d. Lietuvos Respublikos Vyriausybės nutarimas Nr. 808 „Dėl importo ir kitų mokesčių lengvatų įvežtoms transporto priemonėms, skirtoms naudoti užsienio valstybių diplomatinėse atstovybėse, konsulinėse įstaigose ir tarptautinių organizacijų atstovybėse, taip pat Šiaurės Atlanto Sutarties Organizacijos valstybių kariuomenių vienetuose, taikymo tvarkos“.

Registration, re-registration, removal from Register

Diplomatic license plates are issued for the motor vehicles owned/used by the Missions, accredited and residing in Lithuania, members of the Missions and their family members with „A“ and „B“ category accreditation enjoying the diplomatic immunities and privileges under international law or according to the agreement with the Republic of Lithuania.

National license plates are issued to the motor vehicles owned/used by the members of the Missions and their family members with „E“ category accreditation, enjoying restricted immunities and privileges under the international law or according to the agreement with the Republic of Lithuania.

For vehicle registration, re-registration or removal from the Register, the following documents should be submitted to the Protocol Department:

Please note that these documents should be presented in their original forms.

If a vehicle is intended for official use, an application form has to be signed by the Head of the Mission. If a vehicle is intended for private use, the form has to be signed by the owner/user and by the Head of the Mission. In both cases, the application has to be sealed by the stamp of the Mission.

The application with the assigned diplomatic number and approval stamp of the Protocol Department should be submitted to the State Enterprise (SE) „Regitra“. The diplomatic license plates can be ordered at any SE "Regitra" branch.

The following documents shall be submitted to SE "Regitra":

  • an application form approved by the Protocol Department;
  • a document of lawful ownership/use;
  • a vehicle registration certificate (original);
  • mandatory vehicle insurance;
  • an owner’s/holder’s identity document or authorization to register a vehicle and an identity document of an authorized person;
  • a copy of the Customs Clearance Declaration if a vehicle is brought from outside the EU.

Please note that a vehicle should be presented live at the registration for the identification inspection. The registration fee should be paid at the cash desk of the SE "Regitra" in accordance with the price list for the registration of motor vehicles.

New diplomatic license plates will be issued for a three-year period for the Mission and for the period corresponding to the validity of the ID card for the member of the Mission. After the date of expiry, the vehicle should be re-registered or removed from the Register, following the same registration procedure. Please note that the accreditation card of a member of the Mission should be renewed first for re-registration of the vehicle.

Note: the diplomatic and national license plates are the property of the Lithuanian Government and should be returned to the SE "Regitra" when the owner completes his/her appointment and leaves the country for good.

The Ministry emphasizes that failure to observe the correct procedure and to return the license plates can cause delays in issuing registration certificates and license plates to the next vehicle of the Mission or a member of the Mission.  

Upon request, the SE "Regitra" shall issue temporary state number plates and/or a certificate confirming the vehicle’s previous registration.

Loss of Diplomatic License Plates

If one diplomatic license plate is lost or stolen, the Mission or a member of the Mission shall apply to any branch of the SE "Regitra" to issue a new one. The new plate will be issued within 5 working days without changing the diplomatic number. 

If a set of diplomatic license plates are lost or stolen, the Mission or a member of the Mission can apply for the new one by filling in two application forms: one - to remove the vehicle from the register, the other - to re-register it and to receive a new number for the license plates. New diplomatic license plates and new vehicle registration documents will be issued.

If the vehicle registration documents are lost, the Mission or a member of the Mission should address the SE "Regitra" directly.

If the diplomatic license plate or plates are damaged, the Mission or a member of the Mission may apply to any branch of the SE "Regitra" for renewal.  The new plate or plates will be issued within 5 working days without changing the diplomatic number.

Legislation:

  1. 2013 m. birželio 12 d. Lietuvos Respublikos užsienio reikalų ministro ir Lietuvos Respublikos vidaus reikalų ministro įsakymas Nr. V-157/1V-506 “Dėl Lietuvos Respublikos užsienio reikalų ministro ir Lietuvos Respublikos vidaus reikalų ministro 2004 m. rugsėjo 29 d. įsakymo Nr. V-119/1V-317 „Dėl užsienio valstybių diplomatinių atstovybių, konsulinių įstaigų ir tarptautinių organizacijų atstovybių transporto priemonių registravimo tvarkos aprašo patvirtinimo" pakeitimo;
  2. Motorinių transporto priemonių ir jų priekabų registravimo taisyklės, patvirtintos Lietuvos Respublikos vidaus reikalų ministro 2001 m. gegužės 25 d. įsakymu Nr. 260;
  3. Lietuvos Respublikos susisiekimo ministro 2009 m. balandžio 28 d. įsakymas Nr. 3-169 “Dėl motorinių transporto priemonių, priekabų ir šių transporto priemonių sudedamųjų dalių atitikties įvertinimo atlikimo taisyklių patvirtinimo”.

Driving License

For EU-Member Missions:

A member of the Mission of an EU Member State may drive in Lithuania with a valid national driving license. It is not necessary to exchange it for a Lithuanian one as long as the national license is valid.

For Non-EU Member Missions:

A member of the Mission may drive in Lithuania with a valid national driving license. If the national driving license does not meet the requirements of the Conventions on Road Traffic, an international driving permit is also required.

More detailed information on driving licenses is available on the internet site of the SE "Regitra".

Legislation:

  1. Lietuvos Respublikos vidaus reikalų ministro 2008 m. rugsėjo 10 d. įsakymas 1V-328 “Dėl motorinių transporto priemonių vairuotojų pažymėjimų išdavimo taisyklių patvirtinimo”

Mandatory Vehicle Insurance

Mandatory vehicle insurance is obligatory. It should be obtained before vehicle registration. It may be purchased from one of the Lithuanian insurance companies engaged in traffic insurance.

Legislation:

  1. Lietuvos Respublikos transporto priemonių valdytojų civilinės atsakomybės privalomojo draudimo įstatymo pakeitimo įstatymas.

Procedure in the Event of a Traffic Accident

In case of a traffic accident, a privileged person shall not leave the site of the accident until the necessary formalities with the other part of the accident are settled.

Where a traffic accident has caused death or serious injury, no traces of the accident shall be removed or altered. It is strongly recommended to wait until the arrival of the police.

Legislation:

  1. Motorinių transporto priemonių ir jų priekabų privalomosios techninės apžiūros atlikimo tvarkos aprašas

 

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol, Drugs or Medication

Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or medication is considered as a serious crime in Lithuania even if no accident occurs.

The police have the right to flag down a privileged person and ask for his/her personal particulars: an ID card, a driver’s license, a vehicle registration documents and vehicle insurance policy. After examination by the police the documents shall be returned to the owner.

The police decide based on their observations whether there are reasonable grounds for assuming that a privileged person is driving intoxicated. The police are authorized to use a breathalyzer test and a privileged person is requested to cooperate. To ensure that a privileged person who drives intoxicated does not endanger himself or others, the police may impose a temporary driving ban and help the driver to organize alternative transport. However, the ID card, the passport or the driver license of a privileged person who has inviolability may not be taken away. The police will always notify about the incident the Protocol Department which will inform the Head of Mission concerned.

If the same person is reported as driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or medication more than once or has caused serious injuries, the sending state may be requested to recall the person. If necessary, the Lithuanian authorities may request to waive the immunity of a privileged person so that criminal proceedings might be initiated.

Parking

Parking Lots for the Vehicles of the Mission

Requests concerning the Mission’s intention to reserve a parking place should be forwarded to the Municipal authorities, who have full autonomy as regards their policy on reserved parking lots. The Municipality of Vilnius is prepared, where necessary, to mark as reserved the parking lots on the public road outside the main office (Chancery) of a Mission and in front of the official residence of the Head of Mission.

Parking near the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

A vehicle with diplomatic license plates has the right to temporary parking in front of the central entrance of the Ministry.

Parking and Penalty for Parking Violations

Special P-zone signs indicate parking zones. The Pay & Park ticket machines operate in most Vilnius sectors.  In these areas the payment for parking is compulsory.

Vehicles with diplomatic license plates are subject to parking laws and regulations. No exemptions from parking charges are possible since the charges are levied by the Municipality for specific services rendered. Members of the Missions are therefore expected to meet their obligations voluntarily despite their privileges and immunities.

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