What Happens If You Buy A Stolen Car Unknowingly?

Source: freecarcheck.co.uk

Assume you purchased an automobile from a seller who is elusive about paperwork. Perhaps you picked it out of the seller’s backyard since it was there for a long time, or maybe your seller drove it to meet you, and you found it in a perfect position. Wait a minute! What if you unwittingly purchased a stolen car? What follows is a mystery. Is it possible that you’ll end up in prison? Is there something you did wrong?

Even if you had no idea that you got handed over a stolen vehicle, you still could face jail time and protracted legal battles. It is for your safety that you should conduct proper research before settling on a purchase.

How To Save Yourself From Buying Stolen Cars?

Source: spicyauto.com

Before we tell you about the outcomes of buying a stolen car, you should be aware of how you can save yourself from buying a stolen vehicle.

  • Do Proper Research

You should be aware of what you’re purchasing. Is there a particular model or brand that piques your interest? If that’s the case, write down the exact model name, including any terminology, so you can refer to it later and do a lot of research on forums and dealer websites.

It’s ideal to know where the VIN is located in advance to avoid wasting time looking for it on the day of the event, as this could make you appear unprofessional.

Remember that VINs are normally hard-stamped into the vehicle’s body, so any etchings, fiddling, or copy-and-pasted artefacts visible to the human eye should raise red flags. Check this site for more information about how to avoid buying stolen cars.

Source: bankrate.com
  • Check Whether Your Seller Has All The Documents

The first question to ask is whether or not the vendor is the registered owner of the vehicle, and if not, why. Scammers are prone to say they’re selling on behalf of a friend or family member, so make sure you run background checks on the seller and any information he quotes.

Is the seller in possession of the car’s service records? Ask for a service book with stamps of completed work, even if the vehicle is old. If the seller is willing to show you this book, create a list of the garages that have worked on the car so that you can verify it later with the appropriate garage/dealer.

  • Beware Of Private Sellers

Is the car’s owner a local serial seller with a few positive reviews? Is the vehicle on display at a registered home address? These are some of the concerns you should have. Scammers may exploit hours that are inconvenient for conducting vehicle checks, such as after sunset.

In daylight, look at the automobile. Alarm bells should be ringing if the seller’s identity is obscured to the extent of being unrecognizable. A seller should identify themselves in such a way that you feel confident in making a purchase.

Risks Of Purchasing A Stolen Car

Source: uswitch.com
  • You May Be Arrested

If the police are aware of a stolen vehicle in the parking lot, they will not allow you to leave. They’re unlikely to ask for your side of the tale until you’re settled down at the station. You may be arrested and forced to bail yourself out in some states. You might face jail time and a lengthy court struggle, as well as having your automobile confiscated and losing the money you spent on it.

  • You May Get Pulled Over

Perhaps you were so engrossed in the joy of purchasing that car that you didn’t notice it had a burned-out tail light. Traffic police can pull you over later, and this is what the following events will look like:

  • The police check your car’s license plates and find out either they’re stolen or they’re unregistered. Either way, you’re going to prison.
  • Alternatively, if your car lacks license plates, the officer will request your documents.
  • Because you don’t have a title, you have to present a Bill of Sale. The VIN can be found on the bill of sale.
  • The officer checks the vehicle identification number (VIN), and if it has been reported stolen, you’re going to prison.

Whatever the case may be, the reality remains that you are in possession of the stolen property. If you purchase a stolen car and do not report the trade, you’ll be sleeping in a cell with a pillow composed of regret and fear.

Source: kclr96fm.com
  • IT IS ILLEGAL, Not Worth The Risk

Perhaps the lack of a title on your vehicle is unimportant to you. You never get pulled over or have your plates run since you always follow all traffic laws. It’s perfectly conceivable to drive like this for years, and it’s something that people do all the time, but it’s still prohibited.

If this describes you, you may have unknowingly purchased a stolen automobile. That’s a risk you shouldn’t take any longer. Driving an unregistered vehicle in Australia is unlawful, even though it is a widespread practice. Even a minor traffic violation can result in fines and legal costs. You can even get imprisoned if you are found driving a stolen car.

  • You Can’t Sell The Car

Vehicle theft is becoming a bigger problem every year, and more individuals are interested in vetting the history reports or conducting VIN checks before buying a car. However, you might want to sell that car a few weeks, months, or even years down the line. When you do, there’s a reasonable probability that someone will look into its past. It’s best to get ahead of that person on the specifics and any unusual events in the car’s history.

Some people avoid getting involved in the affairs of others. Then there are people who will trust that you got handed over a stolen car unintentionally. You now own something that you can’t sell and shouldn’t drive, and any money you spend on it is gone in the wind forever.

Source: caranalytics.co.uk


Take the necessary steps before purchasing a vehicle, and remember that just because you bought a stolen car by accident doesn’t mean you’re the thief. Unless you stole the car, you are not responsible for the theft. It is always better to get the history report of a vehicle to save yourself from buying a stolen one.