I am researching my latest acquisition that was delivered yesterday via auto hauler. It came from Southern California and was reportedly purchased at an estate auction 20 years ago and never run.
The car has a red California Horseless Carriage Plate with white lettering. Does the California DMV keep a record of plates? No expiration or year on the plate #3045. Can it be researched? On line or by a friendly policeman.
If you have valid insurance and a bill of sale for the car anything can be overcome. I recommend that you join the Automobile Club. They can get you through the registration process easily if you have insurance and a bill of sale.
I've been told the plates drop out of the system if not kept current after five years. Check your car thoroughly as you may find some registration paperwork hiding somewhere.
Royce is somewhat correct. All you need is a VIN verification form and bill of Sale. No proof of insurance is required until such time you choose to operate it on the highway. Also, if you elect not to drive if but just obtain title, you do not have to pay a non operation fee every year because it is exempt.
It is very hit and miss (mostly miss) trying to trace the history of a car from CA. DMV does purge records and has had fires in their DMV archives in years past. Did you receive a title or a bill of sale or neither? You might try posting a picture or two on this site (if the car is a T) in hopes someone recognises the car.
First of all, the California DMV is run by idiots!
Back in the sixties, you didn't have a yearly sticker. Registration was a $25 flat fee, and that is why that car probably doesn't have a yearly sticker on it. But, the liberals complained that our cars were a luxury, and needed to pay a luxury tax, so that is why we have to register them every year now.
Jon, you can run the plate on line at the dmv web site and see if it is clear. The more you can do at the auto club, the better. It depends on who you get at the dmv, if had some real helpful people and some who couldn't find there butt with both hands! Like Bill said, post a picture of the car and where it was located if you know. Good luck
Guys, the car is now in Michigan, other states' rules do NOT apply. Jon was wondering if he can find any history of the car from the plate number. From CA DMV, NO! It has fallen out of the system, in spite of the fact that the Horseless Carriage plates are supposed to be in their own system; and the plates stay with the car they were registered to. Having just been through this with a car that never changed hands, is owned by a City and has documented history, the city went through HELL getting the car back in the system (when the car stopped running in the 70s, they just stopped paying for annual registration).
However!! The HCCA might know who had that plate, especially if it's a low number.It's worth asking them, or some clubs near where the car came from.
What kind of a car is it, that number sounds familiar to me--like one my former employer had?
PS; What Larry said--TRUE!!!! The problems the city had with that 22 Buick was caused by two clerks who thought they were appointed by GOD to make everyone's lives miserable. Took a regional supervisor to straighten things out and she knew the clerks were/ARE a problem (they were even breaking the DMV's own regulations!).
Over thirty years ago I found that the CA DMV keeps records only briefly (I think it was three years at the time), and is useless for tracing the history of a car.
Best thing you can do get Vin check by a police officer and don't explain beyond what you need
California cars had to be registered every year in the sixties and fifties just like now.
In the fifties they had a bolt-on metal tag, in the sixties it was a sticker.
I lived here in the sixties and I don't remember a flat $25 fee either.
I have old license plates with the metal tags from '51 on up for most years.
The Horseless Carriage plates and Historical Vehicle plates started out as a "One-Time, One-Fee" deal, but that didn't last long! I think someone has state that the counties decided to tax such vehicles like they tax boats and other luxury items, so the Clubs asked for it to become an annual fee and avoid the luxury tax. I don't know if that story is true or not.
One of my cars has a red "Horseless Carriage" plate on it. When I got it, there was no date on it. However, when I had it transferred to my name, about 7 years ago it became just like the others which have current type California license plates. I now have to use a sticker with the date and it is renewed every year and I also have to pay all the taxes and fees just like the others.
Jon I tried researching my first T. Like it has been said CA DMV purges records after 5 years. So neither DMV nor AAA could help.
However, I did have a little success by calling a couple of the classic car insurance companies. They couldn't give me a lot of info due to privacy but I did find appx years /states. I had found the prior owners insurance card in the car so that's what made me think about it.
Also, like others suggested, post a photo. I would suggest also putting the HC plate # in the title. HC plate #'s are something the might trigger someone's memory or catch their attention.
Bit of a history lesson. Governor Pat brown signed into law the lifetime antique car registration. His useless son vetoed the law in his first term in office as part of his money grab.
Since you labeled your comment a "history lesson", I must comment.
While Jerry Brown may have been instrumental in getting the lifetime antique car registration law reversed, it would not have been possible for him to "veto" an existing law. The governors veto power exits only with new legislation. When both chambers of the state legislature pass a bill he can either sign it making it law or veto it. He does not have the juice to unilaterally cancel an existing law.
You are correct about the useless part.
And we've re-elected him! Governor Moon-Beam!
California has the best government money can buy!
Well, by "we" all those folks in LA and the Bay Area, we rural folks don't have much, if any, say in what goes one around here.
But I digress! We do have to be vigilant, in case these guys/gals get the idea that we shouldn't be allowed on the highways.
With that useless Governor Moon Beam Brown's new environmental change and carbon laws we will be lucky to get to keep our Model T's, but will be criminals if we try to drive them. He is already going after our guns. And here in the Ca.Central Valley he wants our water for small fish and not to grow food.