As a car owner and a road user, you are likely well aware of how crucial it is for vehicles to have number plates properly displayed. The UK government mandates adherence to the guidelines for displaying number plates and not following the guidelines can result in penalties and fines up to £1000. Number plates are extremely important in identifying the vehicle and its owner, particularly when a vehicle is involved in a crime, a theft, a traffic infraction, or an accident. With just one glance at a number plate, plenty of information can be acquired.

Are you, however, one of the numerous people who wonder what information you can get from a number plate? This article will provide you with information that will assist you.

What Information Is Associated With a Number Plate?

It’s required to provide personal information in order to get a number plate and register a vehicle. Thankfully, most private information should only be accessible to authorities like the police. In order to preserve citizens’ right to privacy, the UK has strict privacy laws. Only if necessary will the authorities be given access to most private information of the owner using the number plate. For example, the authorities have the right to obtain personal information if the owner of the number plate is being investigated for criminal activity or is hurt in an accident.

Vehicle Information Associated With a Number Plate

The required format of modern number plates in the UK is two letters, followed by two digits, a space, and three letters. In DVLA parlance, the first two letters of the number plate are referred to as a “memory tag,” which is a place identifier for the site where the vehicle was initially registered. The DVLA office uses the memory tag to ascertain where the initial registration took place. The next two numbers on the number plate are called “age identifier”, which tells you which six-month span the vehicle was initially registered in. The numbers change every six months, in March and September. Finally, the last three letters are used to identify which dealer the vehicle was purchased from.

What Other Information Can You Find in a Number Plate?

The letters and numbers on UK number plates can reveal a lot about the vehicle they are attached to. You can learn a great deal more about the automobile and its specifications by checking a number plate with the DVLA. You can discover a vehicle’s tax status, the current tax rate, and the expiration date. You can find out exactly when the vehicle was first registered as well as the date on which its MOT expires.

In addition, a number plate search conducted by a third party often yields the following details about the vehicle:

  • Engine details
  • Mileage
  • Damages
  • Repair and maintenance history
  • Criminal background of the driver
  • Accident history
  • Previous repossessions

Bottom Line

Authorities utilise number plates to identify a vehicle and its owner in the interest of public safety, but it can also be useful if you want to learn more about a car you wish to buy. Keep in mind that only authorised staff have the right to access someone’s number plate’s more specific information, particularly personal information about the owner. As a result, you won’t need to be concerned about someone looking up your number plate and getting your personal information.