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Vehicle Fitness Certificate for Cars: Documents Required & How to Apply

Updated On Oct 15, 2023

Get Your Vehicle Fitness Certificate from RTO

What is the Vehicle Fitness Certificate?

A Vehicle Fitness Certificate (VFC) is essential to determining a vehicle's roadworthiness in the Indian automotive ecosystem. This certificate, which emphasises the vehicle's safety, emission standards, and operational reliability, is proof that it complies with the government's statutory operating standards. Vehicles must pass a certification process that examines a number of factors, including engine health, emissions, brake and headlamp functionality, and other critical components.

Why are Vehicle Fitness Certificates Important?

For a number of reasons, the Vehicle Fitness Certificate is quite important. First of all, it guarantees that only automobiles that adhere to the strict safety and environmental regulations are permitted on the roads, preventing mishaps brought on by broken down vehicles and lowering pollution levels in the air.

Second, it helps law enforcement organisations efficiently monitor and control the number of vehicles on the road. In order to avoid fines and penalties, it is legally required for all vehicle owners to possess a valid fitness certificate. Additionally, it frequently plays a significant role in the resale of automobiles, assisting prospective purchasers in determining the car in question's operating status and dependability.

Vehicle Fitness Certificate for Cars: Documents Required & How to Apply

How can I apply online for the vehicle fitness certificate?

The progress in technology has made obtaining a Vehicle Fitness Certificate very simple. Here's how to apply for the certificate online:

Step 1: Access the Official Website - Visit the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways' official website or the website of the relevant state's transport department.

Step 2: Log in or Register: If you're a new user, you'll need to register by entering the required information, like the chassis number and vehicle number. Just log in if you already have an account.

Step 3: Choose the Appropriate Choice: From the menu, locate and pick the item pertaining to the Vehicle Fitness Certificate application.

Step 4: Complete the Application: Fill out the application by providing all necessary information with accuracy.

Step 5: Upload Required Documents: Scanned copies of the required documents must be uploaded. Verify that every document follows the prescribed format and is readable.

Step 6: Pay the Fees: Proceed to use the available payment gateways to make the online payment of the relevant fees.

Step 7: Schedule an Appointment: At the closest Regional Transport Office (RTO), schedule an appointment for the vehicle inspection following payment.

Step 8: Vehicle Examination: Bring your car to the RTO for a physical examination at the appointed time.

Step 9: Get the Certificate: The certificate, which is available for download via the portal, will be provided if the car passes the examination.

How Can I Apply Offline for a Vehicle Fitness Certificate?

You have the option to apply for a Vehicle Fitness Certificate offline via the conventional process, even though the online approach is more practical. Here’s how:

Step 1: Visit the Nearest RTO: Get started by going to the Regional Transport Office (RTO) that is the closest to you.

Step 2: Obtain the Application Document: Acquire the fitness certificate application form, commonly referred to as Form 38.

Step 3: Fill out the form: Complete the form with all required information.

Step 4: Send in Documents: Send the completed form to the RTO with the required paperwork.

Step 5: Pay Fees: At the RTO, pay the required fees.

Step 6: Vehicle Inspection: Make an appointment and show up at the RTO for a vehicle inspection.

Step 7: Certificate Issuance: The RTO will issue the fitness certificate if the car passes the inspection.

Documents Needed to Grant a Vehicle Fitness Certification

A series of documentation, usually consisting of the following, must be submitted in order to apply for a Vehicle Fitness Certificate:

Forms and Documents Required for Fitness Certificate

How to get these Forms and Documents

Application form (Form 38)

Parivahan Portal

Vehicle Sale certificate (Form 21)

Parivahan Portal

Vehicle Registration Certificate (RC).

During vehicle purchase

Valid Insurance Certificate.

Insurance Company / Online from InsuranceDekho

Pollution Under Control (PUC) Certificate.

Authorised PUC or RTO (Nearby petrol pumps too)

Road Tax receipt (up-to-date).

Post completing road tax payment at RTO

Permit (in case of commercial vehicles).


Vehicle invoice (in case of new vehicles).

During vehicle purchase

Roadworthiness Certificate (Form 22)

Parivahan Portal

Residential and address proof

Aadhar Card, Driving License, Passport etc.

Pencil impression of the chassis number

Engine Number of Vehicle (Written in Car Invoice)

Passport-sized photographs of the applicant


To prevent any inconsistencies during the verification process, be sure that every document is an original or an attested copy.

Cost of a Vehicle Fitness Certificate

The price of acquiring a Vehicle Fitness Certificate can differ based on a number of variables, such as the kind of vehicle, how old it is, and the state in which the application is submitted. In general, ordinary automobiles may pay between Rs. 200 and Rs. 600 in fees, while commercial vehicles may pay a little bit more somewhere between Rs. 600 and Rs. 1,000. 

To obtain an exact amount, it is advised to verify at the local RTO or on the official website as these can change periodically. 

Additionally, there are some fees that may be levied in special circumstances such as -

  1. Renewal or granting of authority, the fee is Rs. 15,000
  2. Appealing under Rule 70, the fees is Rs 3,000
  3. Getting a copy of lost original certificate is Rs 7,500

How Can I Renew my Vehicle Fitness Certificate online?

You can also renew a vehicle fitness certificate online by doing the following steps:

Step 1: Register on the Portal: Go to the official website and enter your login information.

Step 2: Select the option for renewal: Among the options offered, pick the fitness certificate renewal option.

Step 3: Sending in Documents: Upload the required files in the format given.

Step 4: Scheduling of Fees: Renew fees must be paid online.

Step 5: Vehicle Inspection: Make an appointment at the closest RTO for a vehicle inspection.

Step 6: Renewal of the Certificate: The renewed certificate can be retrieved from the portal following a successful inspection.

How Can I Obtain a Copy of My Fitness Certificate?

You can apply for a duplicate fitness certificate by following these steps in the event that your original is destroyed or lost:

Step 1: Report Lost Certificate to the Police: Report any loss of the certificate to the local police in a non-traceable manner.

Step 2: Application Form: Complete the form (usually Form LLD) to obtain a duplicate fitness certificate.

Step 3: Document Submission: Send in the completed form, all required paperwork (including, if relevant, the police report), and a statement attesting to the loss of the original certificate at the RTO

Step 4: Fee Payment: The necessary fees must be paid in order to issue a duplicate certificate.

Step 5: Getting the Copy of the Certificate: The RTO will provide the duplicate fitness certificate upon the completion of the details' verification.

How much is the fine for carrying an expired vehicle fitness certificate?

It is illegal to drive a vehicle with an expired fitness certificate under the Motor Vehicles Act of 1988. The fine for this infringement can be high; it usually starts at Rs. 2,000 for the first offence and may go up with more offences (as high as Rs. 10,000). It could also result in the car being seized by the police and held until the fitness certificate is renewed. Multiple offences can lead to imprisonment as well. 

Duration of Vehicle Fitness Certificate Validity

A vehicle fitness certificate's validity duration varies based on the vehicle's category. The first certificate for new private cars is good for 15 years, and then it needs to be renewed every 5 years. On the other hand, commercial vehicles must renew the certificate every 2 years if the vehicle is less than 8 years old. If the commercial vehicle is over 8 years old, then it must recertify the fitness every year starting on the date of initial registration.

Final Thoughts

An important document that certifies the roadworthiness and environmental compliance of automobiles operating on Indian roads is the Vehicle Fitness Certificate. In addition to promoting safety and environmental preservation, it also complies with the legal requirements established by the Indian government.

Every Indian car owner must be aware of the procedures for applying for, renewing, and maintaining this certificate. A safer and healthier transportation ecology can be promoted in the nation by abiding by certain regulatory criteria, which can help to preserve safety and environmental standards.


  1.  How long is the original Vehicle Fitness Certificate valid for new cars?

When a new car is purchased, the initial Vehicle Fitness Certificate is good for two years. After that, the certificate must be renewed yearly to verify that the car is still adhering to safety and emission regulations.

  1. In order to apply for a Vehicle Fitness Certificate, what documents are needed?

You must submit an application for a vehicle fitness certificate together with the necessary paperwork.

  • Request Form (Form 38)
  • Certificate of Vehicle Registration; Current Insurance Policy
  • Certificate of Pollution Under Control (PUC) Payment Receipt for the relevant road taxes
  1. What factors are assessed when the car is put through its paces?

The vehicle's structural integrity, emission levels, braking effectiveness, lighting and signalling equipment operation, suspension and steering system condition, and other key aspects are evaluated during the vehicle fitness test. This thorough inspection guarantees the car's safety and compliance with environmental regulations.

  1. Can I submit an online application for a vehicle fitness certificate?

Yes, you can start the application procedure for a Vehicle Fitness Certificate online in a number of Indian states. The purpose of this facility is to expedite the procedure and improve its efficiency and convenience for car owners. For additional information, see the RTO's official website in your state.

  1. How might not having a current Vehicle Fitness Certificate affect one's situation?

There are severe fines and penalties associated with not having a current Vehicle Fitness Certificate. Furthermore, as it can suggest that the car does not meet the required safety and pollution requirements, it might be viewed as a violation of our shared obligation to ensure environmental protection and road safety.

  1. How often does the vehicle fitness certificate need to be renewed?

A yearly renewal of the Vehicle Fitness Certificate is required after the original two-year period. A comprehensive inspection is part of this renewal process to make sure the car still meets all safety and pollution requirements.

  1. How does the Pollution Under Control (PUC) Certificate differ from the Vehicle Fitness Certificate?

Indeed, there are differences between the Pollution Under Control (PUC) Certificate and the Vehicle Fitness Certificate. The Vehicle Fitness Certificate is a thorough document that evaluates a vehicle's structural integrity, brake efficiency, lighting and signalling equipment condition, and emission levels, among other factors. In contrast, the PUC Certificate primarily focuses on confirming that a vehicle's emissions are within allowable limits.

  1. Do I need a Vehicle Fitness Certificate to operate a new car?

Not at all; a Vehicle Fitness Certificate is required in order to lawfully operate a new vehicle. This document, which is required, certifies that a car satisfies all safety and environmental requirements set forth by the government and attests to its roadworthiness. To protect everyone on the road and to avoid legal repercussions, it is best to obtain the certificate prior to driving the car.


This article is issued in the general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

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