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InfoTracer.com is not a consumer reporting agency as defined by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), and does not assemble or evaluate information for the purpose of supplying consumer reports.

You understand that by clicking "I Agree" you consent to our Terms of Service and agree not to use information provided by InfoTracer.com for any purpose under the FCRA, including to make determinations regarding an individual's eligibility for personal credit, insurance, employment, or for tenant screening.

You understand that license plate and VIN searches are only available for a purpose authorized by the Driver's Privacy Protection Act of 1994 (DPPA). The information obtained from our searches is not to be used for any unlawful purposes.

This website contains information collected from public and private resources. InfoTracer.com cannot confirm that information provided below is accurate or complete. Please use information provided by InfoTracer.com responsibly.

You understand that by clicking "I Agree," Infotracer.com will conduct only a preliminary people search of the information you provide and that a search of any records will only be conducted and made available after you register for an account or purchase a report.

Instant License Plate Lookup

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What Does a License Plate Report Include?

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License plate information is created, stored, and managed by government offices such as the department of motor vehicles (DMV), department of transportation (DOT), and town offices where motorists register their cars. License plate records are governed by strict Driver Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) laws. Using InfoTracer’s powerful search engine when looking up license plate reports, you can find when available, the vehicle make, model, year, vehicle identification number (VIN), vehicle details, vehicle specs, trim level, engine and brake types, recalls and defects, current and past owners (if DPPA allowable use applies), public records and more!

How Does a Reverse Plate Lookup Work?

License Plate Lookup Tool - InfoTracer.com

A reverse plate lookup is a search tool where the user enters a license plate and finds detailed information about the vehicle and owner. However, license plate records are strictly regulated by DPPA laws.

After entering the vehicle plate number and state into the InfoTracer search tool, the user must select one of the DPPA allowable reasons to view the records before registering and seeing the results. If the DPPA checkpoint does not correspond with the search criteria, the user won’t be able to run the search. If the DPPA regulation is satisfied, the InfoTracer tool will instantly locate the exact vehicle associated with the plate number. The details include full vehicle specifications like the brand, make, model, year, trim level, and more detailed information about the vehicle. The user will also find out who owns the car and can see related public information about them.

What is a License Plate?

What is a License Plate?

A license plate is a metal or plastic plate that drivers must attach to their vehicles. It acts as a unique identifier so that law enforcement can find owners and information about the registered vehicle. The information is issued by the state department of motor vehicles (or similar agency) and used to catalog all legally registered vehicles on the road, including cars, trucks, motorcycles, trailers, and RVs. Some vehicles are assigned special plates, such as commercial trucks. When buying a new car, the dealer will attach a temporary cardboard placard in place of the license plate until the driver registers it.

The typical format of a license plate is 5-7 letters or numbers. However, the plate design and presentation differ in each state. The state issues random combinations of letters and numbers to most individuals. However, if someone wishes to pay extra, they can request a specialty plate called a “vanity plate,” also known as personalized license plates.

The driver must register the vehicle with their local DMV or town office to obtain new plates. They will be given a set of plates or a single plate (depending on the state regulations) along with their vehicle registration. Some states require one plate on the front and one on the back of the vehicle, and some states require only one plate. The DMV charges an extra fee for the plates along with the registration fee.

When a driver renews their automobile registration, the plates may stay the same. However, if the driver buys a new vehicle, they can choose to transfer the old plates to the new car or get new ones. In many states, drivers must also affix registration stickers or decals to the plates showing when the vehicle was registered and when it expires.

Driver Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) Laws

The federal and state governments have DPPA laws that strictly regulate access to motor vehicle records, specifically who can see an owner’s name, address, photograph, phone number, driver’s license number, social security number, and other identifying details.

The federal DPPA was enacted in 1994 after actress Rebecca Schaeffer was murdered by an obsessed fan who obtained her home address through motor vehicle records using a private investigator. The incident illustrated the need for privacy, and Congress created the act to protect citizens’ personal information. The DPPA details 14 permissible uses for motor vehicle records with personal information.

InfoTracer is not a consumer reporting agency under the Fair Credit Reporting Agency (FCRA) and does not provide FCRA compliant consumer reports. InfoTracer does not permit the use of information obtained from their service for use in discriminating against any consumer or for the purposes of determining a consumer's eligibility for personal credit, insurance, employment, housing, licenses, or benefits. It also does not permit the use of gathered information for any purpose related to a consumer's economic or financial standing or status.

Frequently Asked Questions About License Plates

How to Lookup a License Plate

Many state DMV offices have online services for license plate searches. These are available to anyone with a “permissible use.” In most cases though, you must fill out paperwork and provide a proper ID before you can request license plate records. You can use the InfoTracer search tool to find nationwide license plate records instantly from commercial, non-DMV sources.

Is it Legal to Search for a License Plate Owner?

It is legal if you have a qualifying reason that complies with DPPA regulations.

How to Perform a License Plate Check

You can use an official state website (.gov) to look up a license plate with proper permissible use. You can also use InfoTracer’s powerful search engine to look up a motor vehicle by plate number from commercial, non-DMV sources.

Are License Plate Records Public?

Certain information linked to a license plate number is public record, such as the vehicle make, model, year, VIN number, and other vehicle specifics. However, more detailed information about the vehicle owner is not public and can only be accessed through legitimate DPPA permissible uses.

How to Understand a License Plate

License plate numbers (a AAA-001 general format) can indicate the car registration’ expiration date (for instance, in Massachusetts, 1234 AB expires in April) or the county of registration (either the full name in Florida, Ohio, Kentucky, Georgia, Mississippi, Iowa and Tennessee or a one- or two-digit code in Alabama, South Dakota, Montana, Nebraska, and Wyoming). Drivers from Georgia can substitute the county name with “In God We Trust,” while Florida allows either “Sunshine State” or “In God We Trust” instead. Each state has specific rules about license plates and how they must be formatted.

How to Get a Custom License Plate

You must contact your local DMV office (or a similar agency) to order custom license plates. You will have to fill out a form and pay a fee. The agency will search to see if your chosen message is available and if approved, they will print up your plates. They will take longer to get than standard plates.

How Many Letters/Numbers on a License Plate?

License plates have between 5-7 characters on them, depending on where you live. Each state has its own plate styles and a set number of letters/ numbers.

How to Renew a License Plate

You must renew your automobile registration every year or every other year, depending on the state where you reside. You can renew your license plates and vehicle registration in person at your local DMV or RMV, or online where available. Your plates may be renewed along with the registration, or you can request new plates if yours are damaged or missing.

What Do I Do if My License Plate Was Stolen?

You must contact the local DMV office and report the theft. They will issue you a new set of plates. Unfortunately, you may have to pay a fee for the new license plates.

Start Your Free Search

Please Read the Following Terms

You understand, agree, acknowledge, and affirm under the penalty of perjury under 28 U.S.C. § 1746 that you may conduct a motor vehicle record search only for a purpose permitted under the Driver's Privacy Protection Act of 1994 (DPPA), 18 U.S.C. § 2721, et seq., as amended, and as supplemented or restricted by the laws, rules and regulations of the state from which the motor vehicle record is sought (collectively, DPPA Laws). By proceeding, you represent that you are aware of and understand the requirements and restrictions of the DPPA Laws, and that you are conducting your search for a purpose authorized by the DPPA Laws. You understand, agree, and acknowledge that your use of motor vehicle records for any purpose other than a permitted purpose under the DPPA Laws may subject you to criminal fines for non-compliance and to civil liability in the form of a private right of action, including actual and punitive damages, as well as attorneys’ fees. You agree to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless InfoTracer.com and its offices, directors, agents, employees, partners, affiliates, licensors, and data providers from and against any third-party claims, demands, expenses or liabilities of whatever nature or kind, due to or arising from your violation of the DPPA Laws. As required by the DPPA, we will retain a record of your request, including your name and permitted purpose(s).

You further understand, agree, and acknowledge that the use of motor vehicle records also is governed by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), 15 U.S.C. § 1681, et seq. By proceeding, you represent that you will not use any motor vehicle records, in whole or in part, (a) to discriminate against any consumer; (b) for the purpose of considering a consumer’s eligibility for personal credit or insurance, employment, housing, or a government license or benefit; or (c) otherwise to affect a consumer’s economic or financial status or standing.

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