Australian Ford Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Should rego authorities compensate people who buy stolen cars?
Item on some current affairs show recently about people who innocently bought stolen cars and had them taken away by police, in one case a year after purchasing a $25,000 or so car.
You usually don't get the car back and it's usually pointless suing the seller, if you can find them, because they either don't have any money or they're the sort that'll beat the crap out of you.
Motor rego authorities have different levels of info in each state and territory. The main problem is that there is no national scheme of notifying stolen and wrecked cars to all rego authorities, although it wouldn't be all that hard in this computer age. So even if the Vic register shows cars stolen in Vic and some other states, that's no help if the car is stolen from another state that doesn't notify Vic, or if the VIN etc is altered and the car is registered afresh, or rebirthed from a wreck. Again, it wouldn't be beyond human ingenuity to have all VIN etc details recorded nationally and checked on registration, so that we don't have several cars running around with the same VIN etc, as we do now, and for VIN codes to be crosschecke automatically so that e.g. a car registered as a manual with an auto code in the VIN is flagged
As the problem can be fairly easily cured by governments but isn't, why shouldn't they bear the loss rather than the unlucky innocents who currently suffer because of government inaction? It's a theoretical question as the governments won't do it, but would you be prepared to pay, say, $10 to $20 a year extra on your rego to be sure you were protected when you buy a second hand car?