Car License Plate Theft

Car license plate theft is a serious crime. Although having an alarm system on our cars will prevent many car related theft crimes, stealing a license plate is easy and occurs often. In this article we will discuss this crime and provide some tips to prevent license plate theft and recover when your license plates are stolen.

There are some obvious reasons why people steal other cars' license plates or even their stickers. It could be because they can't afford to pay for their registration and they want their cars to look like they are legally registered, when they are not. Stealing license plates is considered a gateway crime. Though it is a crime, if the person stealing license plates is caught, the charge will be a lesser larceny charge. It all depends on the State where the crime happens and how strict their regulations are. For example, in Ohio, stealing license plates is a felony. 

How to Protect Your License Plate

If you do a simple Google search, you will find special anti-theft screws for license plates sold at many online stores. This is the simple way to protect yourself. These special license plate screws are more expensive, but you will definitely be protected. Although license plate stickers can be damaged, they are almost impossible to steal without stealing the car license plate.

You can also pay someone to set up a camera by the license plate that will record only when people are within a certain distance from the plate. This will allow you to record the theft and report it to the police. This measure may be somewhat extreme and will not prevent car license plate theft.

Post-Theft Solution

What can and should car owners do when they notice their license plate is stolen? Who should the car license plate theft be reported to? Can car owners still drive the car with missing stolen license plate? These are questions that many ask themselves when they notice their license plate is stolen. 

There are certain actions that drivers can take after they notice that their car license plate is stolen. One of them is to avoid driving the unlicensed car until new license plates are obtained. It is almost certain that once a car license plate is stolen, it will never be recovered. Therefore, you must replace the plates as soon as possible since you can't legally drive without them. Have someone pick you up or take an Uber to prevent any tickets or license suspension for not having plates until your car has valid license plates again. It is best to notify the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) immediately and request new replacement license plates. This is an extra cost but you have no other choice. Perhaps, preventing car license plate theft with special screws may be more cost effective. You will also need to file a police report to alert them that your plates have been stolen and that if anything were to happen, you would be safe.

Order New License Plates

You can setup an appointment at the DMV or have the Uber take you directly there to order your replacement plates as soon as possible. This is the same as cancelling your credit card. If someone were to put your license plates on their car, and they crashed, by letting the police know your license plates have been stolen, there would be no charges against you or at least you will have some documents to defend yourself. 

You will also need to find out if the DMV will mail your plates or if you have to pick them up. Make sure you find out if they will give you temporary license plates while you wait.

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