Fraud Alert: Beware Texas Temporary Tags on Used Cars

Buying used cars can be tricky. A car’s history is everything regarding its current standing, both mechanically and legally. A new report from a Nevada DMV warns used car buyers of buying anything with a “Texas buyer” permit. 

used luxury cars are hard to buy. This car lot is stacked with used cars.
Used car lot Steven Miric/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty Images

What is a “Texas buyer” permit? 

According to CBS 8 News Now, the Nevada DMV says they have seen a rash of shady used car permits, commonly used to hide nefarious legal issues with a used car. The DMV warns buyers that the Compliance Enforcement Division has already seized hundreds of these tags. 

“These permits are generally used on vehicles that can’t be registered in Nevada because of emissions problems, canceled or suspended registrations, insurance or titling problems, or even those that have been stolen and VIN-switched,” said DMV Compliance Enforcement Division Chief J.D. Decker. “Texas is aware that these permits are being misused and is working to solve the problem.”

Where are the fake tags coming from? 

These sketchy tags usually sell online for around $60. These tags do not come from legitimate dealers and can land a car in impound. 

“These permits are not legal in Nevada,” Decker said. “Motorists caught driving vehicles with illegal tags are subject to citations for displaying an improper or fictitious registration, even though the vehicle’s permit will actually show as registered in Texas.” 

What should used car buyers do if they see a “Texas buyer” tag on a car? 

Given that the DMV said that they have already discovered hundreds of cars with these false tags, we can assume that there are still plenty more where that came from. The local officials tell used car buyers to tread very lightly on cars that may be suspected of having one of these tags. 

If you buy a car that has legal issues like no inspection, missing VIN, or even one that’s been stolen, and you are caught driving it, the police can not only impound your ride but you could get fined or even go to jail. Law enforcement officers can also cite the driver for the original, canceled, or suspended vehicle registration concealed using Texas tags.

The DMV is here to help

No, that’s not a joke. In this case, the DMV actually has a cheaper and easier way to deal with things like this than buying the illegal tags for $60. A legal movement permit from Nevada DMV costs just $1 and is available online at dmvnv.com through the MyDMV portal. 

However, these permits are only available to the owner of the vehicle. This means you have to have already bought it to qualify for the $1 temporary tag online. But if you haven’t bought the car yet, bought it from an individual, or haven’t registered it yet, you can walk into the DMV and get the same $1 permit.

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