License Plate Number Lookup

Name Phone Number License Plate VIN
Name Phone Number License Plate VIN

How to Run a License Plate Lookup

Running a license plate lookup has become a simple online process. Historically, this has been a tedious task of scouring multiple websites, using legacy state run resources or hiring a private detective. Now, with the advent of cloud based online databases that can index billions of public records in seconds, license plate information can now be obtained on the fly by anyone. With a simple search form, anyone can perform a license plate number lookup with a plate number or VIN number from the convenience of a laptop, tablet or smartphone. This search can uncover ownership information, vehicle title information, vehicle specifics such as the year and make and model and VIN. A license plate number lookup can be used for verification purposes or for other allowable personal reasons that are outlined by each state’s privacy laws. Businesses, on the other hand, can access much more detailed information for vetting drivers, applicants and employees, and other official purposes. The search starts by entering the full plate number and state into the license plate search field and selecting a reason to run this search. The next step is to verify the make and model of the vehicle and then the user can proceed to accessing the available information, such as vehicle owner contact details, title verification, or a vehicle history report. It’s a simple process that only takes a few moments to access a multitude of valuable vehicle information on the fly.

As of January 2023, there are over 285 million vehicles on the road, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, which means vehicle related public records are in high demand. With a simple online license plate number search, anyone with an internet connection and a smartphone can access these records instantly online. You’ll just need to verify that your reason for running a license plate lookup is within the guidelines of the state and federal privacy laws. You can look these up with the updated 2023 DPPA that is available to review online.

What You Can Obtain From a License Plate Number Lookup

You can find  license plate owner information, vehicle manufacturer specs and a breakdown of the vehicle options and components, vehicle history report, vehicle title information and recalls and reported safety issues. A vehicle’s license plate number is a good tool to use as research when purchasing a used vehicle and can give potential buyers a lot of information to help determine if the vehicle they want to buy is a good value. The ability to run a license plate number lookup on the fly with any device that has an internet connection has greatly assisted millions of people in purchasing a used vehicle and gives the buyer an advantage in this process. It’s very difficult for people or dealerships to be dishonest since most vehicle related information is publicly available to everyone. If you do not have the plate number available, it’s also possible to lookup vehicle information with the 17 digit VIN that is stamped on multiple locations on all cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles and RVs. If you are in the market to purchase a used vehicle from a dealership, they should provide you with a car fax or some kind of vehicle history report but you can run one on your own using either the plate or vehicle identification number, so make sure to request that before making the purchase. There can be a lot of hidden issue that can be uncovered with a quick license plate number lookup such as a salvaged title which means it was in a major accident at some point. According to national vehicle registration statistics from January 2023, over 800,000 vehicles on the road that have washed or salvaged titles in the United States. The majority of these vehicles have been damaged by flooding, weather events and accidents, and without running a vehicle background check, it may not be obvious.

Car Owner Search

Understanding the License Plate Lookup

In order to perform a license plate lookup with any vehicle record database it is important to understand terms and conditions of this type of search and what is available in your state of residence. There are both federal and state privacy guidelines, such as the Driver Protection Privacy Act, that only allow certain reasons for the general public to access personal information with a vehicle plate search, such as the owner’s contact information. Most all of the other information, such a car history report, or a title verification can be accessed by anyone. The intent of the search is what is important and as long as you’ve read through the acceptable reasons and have verified your intent for this type of vehicle record search, you can proceed with your inquiry. It is also important to note that if you’re using a non FCRA certified service, which most public records fall under, you cannot use the information you’ve obtained for any legal, official or application purposes. These non-certified resources are great for doing research for personal reasons but you’ll want to use a FCRA certified resource for job applications, tenant screening, academic applications and official legal purposes. It is also important to verify any information you obtain with other fields of data, such as the make and model of the vehicle you’re researching, to insure you’ve found the correct vehicle record. Occasionally there are inaccuracies with online cloud based public records so verify the information you’re accessing as best as possible. Also note that it is illegal to harass or stalk someone and you must make sure to follow the guidelines when using our license plate and vin lookup tools.

Finding VIN Information From License Plate Numbers

If you have the license plate number of a vehicle you can also find the VIN number with our online license plate lookup. This is a good means of identifying and verifying any vehicle you lookup. A VIN number will give you the make and model, manufacturer, body style, engine, year and much more. The VIN number is a 17 digit code that will allow you to verify every detail of the vehicle in question. A free license plate number lookup can also give you safety and recall information about a vehicle however if more detailed information is needed from a license plate lookup then running a vehicle history report from the vehicle identification number is a good option. It’ll usually cost a few bucks but it’s a worth while expenditure when purchasing a used vehicle, which can uncover any surprises that are not forthcoming from the seller. This happens more than people think and it’s not always intentional, especially if there were multiple owners in the vehicle’s history. Think of the VIN number like a social security number for vehicles, each of these 17 digit codes are unique.

Free License Plate Number Lookup

License Plate Tag Search

Every vehicle that is registered in the United States has a license plate, a vehicle identification number, registration tags, a registration card and a vehicle title. The tag that most people refer to is the registration sticker that is placed on the rear license plate of a vehicle. A vehicle license plate tag search is typically used to verify if a vehicle is currently registered, one of the tags will have the year and the other tag the month that the vehicle is registered until. Many people that are trying to lookup license plate tags are either trying register their vehicle or are in the market to purchase a used car, truck, SUV or motorcycles. There is an easy way to find out if a vehicle is currently registered, and that is looking at the rear plate to see if the registration tags are current. If the tags on the vehicle are expired then there might be an issue with the used vehicle. Some examples can be there might be an issue with the vehicle title or if it was registered as non-operational for a period of time or perhaps it didn’t pass a smog test and has some mechanical issues, or it was in a major accident and deemed totaled by an insurance company. This can be a red-flag that should be investigated. A situation like this can lead to difficulties in registering or changing the title over to a new owner and lead to costly repairs or buying a used car that is not road-worthy.

License Plates of the United States

There are over 250 million registered vehicle in the United States, as of 2020, according to the Federal Highway Administration, and each state has its own Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) or a similar agency responsible for registering vehicles and issuing license plates. License plates are required for most vehicles in the US, including cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles, motorhomes and certain types of trailers. License plates vary quite a bit by state in terms of appearance, materials, lettering and numbering and special characters. Most states offer specialty plates that sponsor or represent various organizations, causes, or special interests. Each states also offers the ability to register personalized or vanity plates, allowing vehicle owners to choose a custom sequence of letters and  numbers and special characters, that must be first approved by the DMV. In the US, vanity plates account for as much as 10% of the registered vehicles in some states and their popularity is growing. It is also possible for someone to search vanity license plates with a wildcard in place of a number or letter in the search fields, depending on what resource is being used. If that is not an option then the VIN should be used in leu of the specialized plate number

Run a License Plate Search By State

Frequently Asked License Plate Lookup Questions

Can You Lookup Someone's License Plate Number?

You can lookup someone's license plate number if you have the complete license plate number and the state it's registered in. You must have a valid reason for performing a license plate number lookup according to the rules and regulations of the state you live in.

Can I Lookup a License Plate Number For Free?

You can lookup some license plate information for free. You will need the full license plate number and state it's registered in to run a free license plate search. Vehicle information may include make and model and year, VIN, recalls and safety issues associated with that vehicle.

Can I Lookup Someone By Their License Plate?

Depending on the state you live in, you can lookup someone by their license plate number. In order lookup a person by license plate you will need to have a valid reason that is outlined in your state's DPPA regulations. Some personal information might be limited depending on what state you live in.

Can You Find Out Someone's Name From Their License Plate?

It is possible to find out someone's name from their license plate. In order to legally run a license plate name search you will need to verify that your reasons for doing so is in accordance with your state's DPPA. You can also visit the DMV and request license plate information if you have a valid reason.

How Can I Trace a License Plate?

To trace a license plate number to the vehicle or owner you will need the full license plate number as well as the state the vehicle is registered in. Then you will need to have a reasonable request, as outlined in your state's DPPA, to access license plate owner information. License plate trace reasons will vary depending on what state you live in.

Can a Civilian Run a License Plate?

Yes, a civilian can run a license plate number. To run a license plate search as a civilian you will need to have all the license plate information and select a reason from the DPPA to be in compliance with state law.

How Do I Find The Owner of a License Plate Number?

To find the owner of a license plate number you will need to have a valid reason to perform this search as outlined by your state's DMV and DPPA regulations. Once you have a valid and acceptable reason you can search for vehicle owner information with the full license plate number and state of registration. Some owner information might be limited depending on what state you reside in.

What Information You Can Get From a License Plate Lookup

A license plate search can reveal a lot of information. You can find vehicle information, VIN, recalls & safety concerns and limited owner information if you have a reason that complies with your state's laws and regulations.

How Do I Search a License Plate Number Online?

There are online vehicle record websites that allow you lookup license plate information with the full plate number and state of registration. You can also find vehicle information online with the vehicle's identification number or VIN.

Where can I find my license plate number if I lost my plate?

If you lost your license plate you can always find your license plate number on your vehicle registration, vehicle title or your auto insurance card.

Can I find a license plate number by running a VIN search?

Yes, since each vehicle identification number is unique, you can lookup a license plate number by running a VIN search. You must have the full 17 digit VIN to accurately find the corresponding license plate number

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Responses to “License Plate Number Lookup

  1. squarryadministrator says:

    Xhelil, you will need to contact the DMV in your state to change your address on your vehicle registration and/or vehicle title. You can download the forms online to change your address with the DMV and mail them in with the proper documentation to prove it’s you an not someone else.

    How To Change My Address With The DMV

    1. Visit the DMV website in your state of residence
    2. Download the Change of Address form
    3. Complete the form with proof of ID
    4. Mail in the Change of Address form
    5. You will receive confirmation by mail in a few weeks

  2. Xhelil Ballazhi 2513 Fox meadow dr Crest Hill IL 60403 says:

    I wanna do change of address for me Xhelil Ballazhi and my wife Kadrije Balazhi

  3. squarryadministrator says:

    It’s possible that it’s an abandoned vehicle. You can reach out to the police and have that vehicle removed if it’s on your property. If it’s on the street and hasn’t been moved then you might want to report it in any case since it’s a possible abandoned vehicle.

    How to Report an Abandoned Vehicle

    If you suspect a vehicle has been abandoned you can report this to your local police to have it removed. Make sure to have a full description of the vehicle as well as the license plate number and VIN if possible. The police will then send a notification to the last registered owner of the vehicle that their vehicle has been impounded.

  4. Steph says:

    What if a car has not moved for over 6 months and tags are out of date like 2013.

  5. squarryadministrator says:

    First, hopefully everyone is OK. Please seek medical attention if there are any injuries from the car accident. Next, you will want to file a police report and give them the license plate number and make and model of the vehicle if you know this. Then follow up and notify your insurance company and provide them with the police report number. If the vehicle did not stop or acknowledge the accident, this is called a “hit and run” and you will follow the same process outlined above but without the other vehicle owner and insurance information.

    How Do I Report a Hit and Run Car Accident?

    First make sure everyone is OK. Then call the police as soon as everyone is safe and out of harms way. Once the police officer has arrived, give them all your information including driver’s license, registration and insurance. Then tell the officer you would like to file a Hit and Run report and give them and details of the other vehicle. Once you have a Hit and Run report number, notify your auto insurance company.

  6. Natalie ramey says:

    The owner of this explorer hit my vehicle today in buffalo minnesota plate number DFM037

  7. squarryadministrator says:

    In order to get a duplicate license plate for your trailer you can visit the DMV website and fill out the form to replace your lost trailer license plate. You must be the registered owner and have the plate mailed to the address on your vehicle registration. There will be a nominal fee and your new trailer license plate will arrive via mail in a few weeks

    How to Get a Duplicate Trailer License Plate

    1. Visit the DMV website in your state
    2. Fill out the form for a duplicate license plate
    3. You must be the registered owner of the trailer
    4. A new plate will be sent via mail in a few weeks

  8. Richard Wayne McKenzie says:

    I lost my trailer plate in Oklahoma on 40 on the expressway..i dont know the was a lifetime plate…

  9. squarryadministrator says:

    Danny, thank you for reaching out about our Free License Plate Lookup tool. Unfortunately our license plate and VIN resources only have records for vehicles on the road. We do not have any records for off-road vehicles, boats, trailers or aircraft.

    How to Run a Boat Registration Number

    1. Locate the boat registration number
    2. Call the state’s Department of Marine & Wildlife
    3. You can also contact the US Coast Guard
    4. Provide the registration number & vessel description
    5. Find out who is on the title & registration of the boat

  10. Danny Morgan says:

    Yes I am trying to check on a boat being registered in the state of Arkansas and it will not give me any information when I type in the vin number off the boat

  11. squarryadministrator says:

    You will need to make a request with the DMV if it’s possible to use your license plate on another vehicle but it is not legal to do this before doing so. This would mean updating your vehicle registration, the title information.

    Can I Use My License Plate on Another Car?

    You cannot use your license plate on another car unless cleared by the DMV. Depending on the state you live in, it might possible to transfer a license plate number to another vehicle but this would mean updating the title and registration of your vehicle as well as your auto insurance carrier.

  12. Diana Rodriguez says:

    Can I use my license plate on another car?

  13. squarryadministrator says:

    Reckless driving and distracted driving can be very serious when it puts other people on the road in danger. Your best option to help the situation is to contact the police or call 911 if you think this is a drunk driving situation. Please do not attempt to thwart the situation yourself as this could lead to a dangerous situation.

    Calling 911 on Reckless Drivers

    Calling 911 indicates a serious situation. If you notice a reckless driver, dangerous distracted driving or a super aggressive driver then you should call 911. Please note that calling 911 is for emergencies so if you see a reckless driver putting other people at risk then calling 911 is appropriate.

  14. Sixty Trump says:

    Wreakless driver

  15. squarryadministrator says:

    In this situation your best option would be to contact the agency that sent you the Toll violation and dispute this charge. This should be as easy as showing them evidence of your vehicle with the license plate number on your registration. Sometimes the toll company will also take a picture to verify who is driving. This should also be evidence that it wasn’t you. These mistakes happen from time to time and you should be able to easily sort this out with the Toll agency. See below for how to contest a Toll Violation with the bill you were sent

    How to Dispute a Toll Violation

    Disputing a toll violation can be done by filling out the “Contest of Notice” portion of the toll evasion you’re accused of. Submit an explanation of why you are contesting the toll violation. Then mail in the form and wait for it to be reviewed. This may take a few weeks to process. You can also go online to dispute your charges with the relevant state toll road agency

  16. Susan Petterson says:

    I have been billed for a toll that I am not responsible for. I need to find out who owns this car.

  17. squarryadministrator says:

    It’s possible that the license plate is a specialty license plate but there should still be a state listed on the plate somewhere. If you cannot find it on the license plate then look on the tags, or registration sticker.

    Different Types Specialty License Plates

    • Collegiate
    • Legacy
    • Environmental Organizations
    • Veterans’ Organizations
    • Artistic
    • Charities
    • Conservancy
    • Firefighter Recognition
    • Police Recognition
    • Pet Lovers
    • Awareness Topics
    • Endangered Species
    • Special Interest

  18. arlene langendorfer says:

    I have the plate # but there is no State on the plate. curious how this can be as all 50 states display the state on the plate

  19. squarryadministrator says:

    You will need to contact the DMV about any disabled person parking placard information. We do not have the ability to search placards such as you mention.

    Handicap Parking Placard Fraud

    If fraud is suspected with a handicap parking placard, you can report this to the DMV in your state via email. Reach out to your state’s DMV website and search for “reporting fraud” and fill out the form and submit it online


    Hi. I’m on the board of my condo. How do I search for the person’s name using the serial number on a handicap placard?


Quick results
Reviewed 2019-10-31T21:37:45, by August   5/5 Stars

Quick LP search to get the info I am looking for

One of the best
Reviewed 2019-10-31T21:37:03, by Hank   5/5 Stars

One of the best LP look up tools out there

works well
Reviewed 2018-08-08T00:59:28, by Love   4/5 Stars

Site works great to find the info I was looking for when running a License plate

accurate info
Reviewed 2018-08-08T01:02:52, by Mike A   5/5 Stars

Accurate results on 3 searches

Great Experience
Reviewed 2018-08-08T01:03:48, by Christina   4/5 Stars

Lookup is great

Show all reviews
Last Updated: 2023-01-09

Please be aware that the information obtained using searches may not always be accurate and up to date as we do not create, verify, or guarantee the accuracy or the amount of information provided through our service. Data availability is largely dependent on various public sources from which the information is aggregated. is not a consumer reporting agency as defined by Fair Credit Reporting Act and should not be used to determine an individual’s eligibility for personal credit or employment, or to assess risk associated with any business transactions such as tenant screening. By using the services offered through this website you agree to comply with all of the conditions set forth in our terms and privacy disclosure. The information obtained from our searches is not to be used for any unlawful purposes such as stalking or harassing others, or investigating public officials or celebrities. Violators may be subject to civil and criminal litigation and penalties. All searches are subject to our terms and applicable laws.