West Hollywood residents who need a VIN verification are not limited to having to go to the Department of Motor Vehicles. For your convenience & lifestyle there are more suitable alternatives that make it a lot easier for you to fulfill the Department of Motor Vehicles requirements for registering your car, truck, trailer or off-highway vehicle. In this article we aim to answer some of the most common questions when it comes to getting your VIN verification done Los Angeles County.
First, what is a California VIN verification?
A VIN verification is a California DMV inspection required to get your out of state vehicle registered in the California DMV database. It is a physical inspection of the vehicle – this inspection is documented on the REG31 / VIN verifier form.
Second, what does a vehicle verifier look for when doing California VIN Verifications?
A vehicle verifier follows the REG31 form from top to bottom, and fills out the sections as they go along. Some of the things that are required to be documented are the vehicle year, make and model, the VIN, the VIN location, the number of wheels, the number of axles, the license plate on the vehicle, the fuel type the vehicle uses, the status of the US Federal Certification Label and the Odometer reading. In addition to this we document the type of vehicle it is, such as a commercial, automobile, permanent trailer, coach trailer or motorcycle. Here are a few photos of what we saw on this 2017 Lamborghini Huracan.
Third, why do I need a California VIN verification?
The VIN Verification process is exactly as it says, to verify the vehicle identification number of the vehicle. This process ensures that the vehicle actually exists (not just on paper), and second, that the vehicle identification number on the vehicle itself matches what is on the title. To obtain a VIN verifier’s license is inexpensive and relatively easy – the training to become a verifier is minimal, however, the task that a Socal VIN verification entails is very important in protecting the public against theft, fraud and any other type of illegal activity. It’s a preventative measure to facilitate catching activity that is fraudulent. As an example, let’s say that you have a Vehicle with VIN number 1GCEC1111XXXXXXX, and there’s already a vehicle with that same VIN number in the CA DMV database or another state’s DMV – this is an automatic trigger that there is something wrong. I would like to consider a vehicle verifier a gatekeeper against fraud.
Requirements to Register an Out of State Vehicles in California
In addition to offer verification services for your vehicles we are closely associated with a registration service called Quick Auto Tags – call them to get your car licensed & titled. Listed below are some of the other requirements & documents you will need to complete the registration process in California after your vehicle has been vin verified:
Your out of state title, MSO (manufacturer’s statement of origin), or registration card (if you’re only registering your car).
For all gas powered & some diesel powered vehicles, you must get a smog.
For commercial vehicles, pickup trucks (this includes small pickups, like El Caminos) you must get a California Weight-master Certificate.
For all cars, trucks, coach trailers and most PTI trailers (some exceptions apply with PTI trailers)
PTI trailer exception: If you have a brand new trailer that falls within the permanent trailer category, and it has an MSO, and it was purchased out of state, you will not have to get one
Private vin verifiers are prohibited from doing a Vin inspection on certain vehicles & for certain scenarios. These are listed below:
Inspections on vehicles that are to be revived salvage
Inspections on vehicles that have been junked
Vehicles that are 1980 or newer who do not have their Federal Safety label
Motorcycles who have no supporting documents or who were in the DMV database before and fell off
Gray market or direct import vehicles
Other Reasons I May Need a California VIN verification?
The VIN verification process is mostly used for bringing in vehicles that are not in the DMV database into the DMV system, however, it is also used for other reasons by the DMV and other entities. Below I will list a few of those scenarios:
Vehicle was in a tow yard, the tow yard initiated a lien sale, the owner of the vehicle has recovered their vehicle from the tow yard but there is a lien authorized on file. To lift the lien authorized the DMV uses the VIN verification process to confirm that the registered owner has recovered their vehicle and has physical possession of the vehicle once again.
You have a large commercial truck registered through IRP (international registration program). The IRP unit wants you to get a VIN verification to confirm the mileage (this process documents the mileage for them).
Your vehicle is being converted from one type of vehicle to another (change in body type model). An example of this is, you have a 2021 Ram 3500 that is registered as a pickup, but now you put a camper shell on it, and it is now a pickup mounted camper (PM) changing it into an automobile.
Your vehicle has fallen off of the DMV system and it needs to be re-introduced into the DMV system. (Our parent company Quick Auto Tags is a license registration service and can help you out with this).
The VIN on my car does not match the VIN on my title – this is a simple fix that the California verification process can fix this.
Verifying Multiple Vehicles
Some individuals or companies may have multiple vehicles to get a vehicle verification on. For this scenario, by far, the #1 solution is to have a mobile VIN verifier come to your location and get all your VIN verification done. Call us to make an appointment: 310-598-5343
Where Can I Get a California VIN verification?
There are 4 places that you can get a verification services, below I will list them for you:
Quick VIN Verification
DMV (DMV employees)
Registration services – many registration services do not advertise they provide this service, but they do have one in house, so searching locally for “registration services” instead of “vin verification service” may also help you find someone.
How much does it cost to get a California VIN verification?
The costs associated with getting a VIN verification depend on whether you want a mobile VIN verification or if you are willing to drive to the respective businesses to get it done. Below are the costs associated with each of the aforementioned places:
Quick VIN Verification – at our VIN verify place: $25 – mobile, licensed vehicle verifiers come to you: between $67-$97 in Los Angeles County
AAA – at their VIN verify place – it is included in their membership, they do not service non-members
DMV – no cost
CHP – no cost
Things to Know About Your Options in Los Angeles County:
With each option that is available to you to get a SoCal VIN verification there are benefits and details that you must be made aware of before you choose which is more suitable to you:
Quick VIN Verification: We are mobile. We are friendly. We are fast. We are predictable. You set the time and place – and we are there. Licensed vehicle verifiers keep you away from the DMV – and stay home, or at any place you’d rather be, other than the DMV.
AAA: If you are a member, your membership includes the vehicle verifications service, along with the other services they provide. The mobile VIN verification is NOT an option.
DMV: There is no cost. But you must have your paperwork in order prior to seeing them for a VIN verification – you can no longer just drive up and have a vehicle verifier inspect your vehicle. The mobile VIN verification is NOT an option.
CHP: There is no cost. But you must have your paperwork in order prior to seeing them, and you must be referred to them by the CHP. For more information on the CHP vin verifications please read this section of my website. The mobile VIN verification is NOT an option.
What you need to know about CHP VIN inspections in California
If you are being referred to the CHP by the DMV it’s for a specific reason. In rare situations, a CHP referral is a mistake, and the result of a misunderstanding, laziness or flat out ignorance. So before I continue, I’ll address the reasons someone will mistakenly refer you to the CHP:
It is common for rookie vehicle verifiers to automatically refer you to the CHP when they don’t know how to proceed. Example, how to determine the year of an early model vehicle, such as a 1959 Chevy Impala. There are ways to verify the year of these vehicles, but when a rookie doesn’t know how to look it up, they make it “simple” and refer you to the CHP.
They don’t know that this particular early model vehicle doesn’t have a secondary VIN.
They don’t know that the engine & VIN number are one in the same for an early model vehicle.
Now that we have addressed those mistakes, let’s talk about the legitimate reasons why you got referred over to a CHP VIN inspector:
You have a late model vehicle that is a revive salvaged or junked vehicle. Late model vehicles are almost always referred to the CHP for the reason that they need the expert eyes of a CHP officer. What they mostly look for is that this recently crashed vehicle is not being rebuilt with stolen parts from other vehicles.
You have a motorcycle that has fallen off of the DMV database and have NO supporting documents.
You have a motorcycle that needs an engine change.
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