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Legality issue with vin tags

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Dog Dish Deluxe, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. Dog Dish Deluxe
    Joined: Dec 23, 2011
    Posts: 778

    Dog Dish Deluxe
    BANNED
    from MO.

    I was wondering if anybody might know about the legality of Vin tags from junked 50's cars being used/sold to use to get titles for one that somebody is rebuilding. Is it some huge crime to do this? I mean in theory if you have a vin tag and a body you can pretty much get a title for it, but is it legal?
     
  2. Crankhole
    Joined: Apr 7, 2005
    Posts: 2,618

    Crankhole
    Member

  3. 62RagtopNova
    Joined: Feb 5, 2012
    Posts: 116

    62RagtopNova
    Member

    If I recall Boyd Coddington got into trouble doing this type of thing in Calif. I don't remember the details but it was a title scam of some kind.
     
  4. unkledaddy
    Joined: Jul 21, 2006
    Posts: 2,865

    unkledaddy
    Member

    Shhhh!.........Yes.
     

  5. verde742
    Joined: Aug 11, 2010
    Posts: 5,445

    verde742
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  6. NIckel and dime stuff - meaning that you'll do 5 - 10.

    Cosmo
     
  7. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 17,942

    49ratfink
    Member
    from California

    people swap vin tags all the time. how are they going to sell all the cars they have stolen?
     
  8. junkyardjeff
    Joined: Jul 23, 2005
    Posts: 7,669

    junkyardjeff
    Member

    It would be better if you had the title to match the tag and you still could be in trouble if caught changing the tags.
     
  9. Dog Dish Deluxe
    Joined: Dec 23, 2011
    Posts: 778

    Dog Dish Deluxe
    BANNED
    from MO.

    I know people do it all the time, but I didn't know that its actually a felony. Good to know. What about the "collectible documents" thing? It seems like selling something like this stating that it's for "display" only alleviates the seller from any legal BS, is this true? I've always wondered how people get away with this stuff.
     
  10. notrod13
    Joined: Dec 13, 2005
    Posts: 988

    notrod13
    Member
    from long beach

    and they are cracking down..... just go to triple a and file for lost tittle... you get a new one in a week or two ... legal beagle and no nonsense..

    why would you risk swapping tags on something you built.
     
  11. bobscogin
    Joined: Feb 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,761

    bobscogin
    Member

    As I recall, he was assembling shop built cars in California and titling them via a "title service" in Alabama. The values of the vehicles were stated to be unrealistically low, thus avoiding taxes on the true value when registered in California. California didn't take kindly to being screwed out of the revenue and took action against him, and possibly the vehicle's owners. I'm sure there's more out there on the web, but that's how I recall it.

    Bob
     
  12. deto
    Joined: Jun 26, 2010
    Posts: 2,621

    deto
    Member

    It's been done before. Small scale stuff usually doesn't draw too much attention but there are legal ways to handle it.

    Worked at a shop that was building 32s with purchased vins. Shop owner did some time over it
     
  13. Dog Dish Deluxe
    Joined: Dec 23, 2011
    Posts: 778

    Dog Dish Deluxe
    BANNED
    from MO.

    If you started with a body or cab that didn't have any identification on it to begin with, you would need some kind of VIN number, you can't just make one up. Then say you got one off of an identical year/model that was junk and used that on your build. Thats what I'm wondering in a nutshell.
     
  14. bobscogin
    Joined: Feb 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,761

    bobscogin
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    Only the currently registered owner of a vehicle can apply for a "lost" or duplicate title.

    Bob
     
  15. Crankhole
    Joined: Apr 7, 2005
    Posts: 2,618

    Crankhole
    Member

    If the VIN is out of the DMV system....you are the current registered owner.
     
  16. More than your average felony, it is against federal law as in "We are planning a blanket party at the gray rock hotel in Leavenworth, KS" felony.
     
  17. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 11,653

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL


    This is were the term "assembled vehicle" and "assigned VIN" come in to play. The method usually requires you apply to your State DMV, produce bills of sale for major components, etc, etc, pay some taxes, maybe supply a bond, and they will issue a VIN and a title. Not the easiest or cheapest in the short run, but the safest. If you don't follow the State's regs, and get caught, then it definitely is not easy or cheap.


    Ray
     
  18. bobscogin
    Joined: Feb 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,761

    bobscogin
    Member

    Who becomes the registered owner then? Are you saying that when a vehicle drops out of the system, it's title becomes invalid and no longer serves as proof of ownership for the person in possession of the vehicle? I find that hard to believe.

    Bob
     
  19. Dust off the stripey suit, you're going up the river.
    With no VIN, in most states, it's a felony to possess, much less try to do something with it. Add swapping numbers, and you'll have three square delivered through the grates.

    Not saying it not done, but it's sent more than a few up, too.

    Cosmo
     
  20. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    People do lots of things and get away with many of them...but standards will tighten, as they already have for IDing citizenship for driving licenses and I bet lots of these people will eventually be caught and fried as controls tighten.

    There are only 2 sources for legal numbers...the stampings by the manufacturer (plate is usually backed by stampings elsewhere) and assigned numbers with state attached plate that all states issue one way or another. Anything else and each renewal, insurance claim, or resale of the vehicle could lead to major trouble.
     
  21. Special Ed
    Joined: Nov 1, 2007
    Posts: 6,260

    Special Ed
    Member

    Go to jail. Go directly to jail. Do not pass Go, and do not collect $200.00.
     
  22. Do you get to buy park place on the way there?

    I would just contact the local DMV and ask them how you legally get a VIN and what all the fees are for that kind of thing.
     
  23. BrandonB
    Joined: Feb 24, 2006
    Posts: 3,143

    BrandonB
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from nor cal


    Ask five DMV clerks that question and you'll get five different answers.
     
  24. Bilt
    Joined: Jun 23, 2011
    Posts: 311

    Bilt
    Member

    In a cliff note version. In most States you can show what you have put to gather, get an inspection, show ALL you r reciepts to document where the parts came from and that state can attach a VIN to that vehicle and that state will grant a title for that vehicle. If you have a vehicle which does not have a title but does have a VIN...in Kansas I found the easist way is to get a lawsuit against the vehicle (as dumb as that sounds) You plantiff, car defendant. The court then order that a title to be produced for the vehicle in your name. It cost about $130 bucks to do in the jurisdiction which I live.

    If you are caught switching VIN's not only do you look at criminal charges but the vehicle is seized and normally destroyed.
     
  25. ....." This is were the term "assembled vehicle" and "assigned VIN" come in to play. The method usually requires you apply to your State DMV, produce bills of sale for major components, etc, etc, pay some taxes, maybe supply a bond, and they will issue a VIN and a title. Not the easiest or cheapest in the short run, but the safest. If you don't follow the State's regs, and get caught, then it definitely is not easy or cheap...."


    Ray
    This is exactly what I had to go thru with my roadster in NC...I had an NC title in my name for a '26 Fotd Roadster that I've had for years.. I was gonna stamp the number in the frame ,go register it,get a tag, and be done with it...then I found out a NCDMV officer would eventually visit and inspect my car because of the age.. If it was , in fact, a 26 Ford roadster, he would then verify the VIN and sign off . I found out these guys are knowledgable enough to spot a fake stamping,homemade frame,a rebuilt auto,a re-attatched VIN plate ,etc...Thats when they can charge you with a crime...
    So , I chose to go the legal,bonded title,assigned VIN route...
    Started the process last Nov... Got my tag & registration today !!!
    But just to let you know, I was told at the tag office, that the State office could still find something wrong with the paperwork and hold up the title!!!

    Stan
     
  26. speedfreek155
    Joined: Sep 10, 2011
    Posts: 312

    speedfreek155
    Member

    I believe it is called VIN tampering and it IS illegal .
     
  27. kirby1374
    Joined: Dec 16, 2008
    Posts: 427

    kirby1374
    Member

    Maybe not helpful but what the hey, I feel like clogging up this thread.
    I had a 38 chevy legal title and all; I was ignorant (I mean, know it all ;) as a 20 year old can be). I had a mechanic friend do an engine swap. Drove the car for 6 years as a daily and found out as I tried to sell it that I had no vin#. The number was on the original engine. Oregon DMV and state police inspected and then issued me an assigned vin#. The only bad thing that came of it that I had to pay the vin fee and new title fee and then wait a month to sell it. I probably would not had even known my problem if I had sold in state; the guy from cali was smart and checked for a vin
     
  28. metlmunchr
    Joined: Jan 16, 2010
    Posts: 752

    metlmunchr
    Member

    In addition, they'll use 18 USC part 512 to confiscate the vehicle with an altered VIN.

    The above is just what the Feds will do for you before whichever state you happen to be in takes over and adds a few more years and another $50,000 or so in fines on top of the above.

    If you've got another $150,000 for a really good lawyer, you might get away with only the fines and no prison time. At that point, you're just down in the neighborhood of $400 thou, so if that seems like a good gamble just give it your best shot :D
     
  29. call 1800 lawyers
     
  30. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    Another catch point: Look for the post on this by an insurance adjuster. They inspect your wrecked car thoroughly with a manual of tech info covering all details of secondary stampings, appearance of plate an rivets, etc. If it ain't right...the car is NOT the car they were insuring.
     

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