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How to check the name of the car owner?

Once the contract for the sale of a used vehicle has been signed, the next step is to change the holder on the gray card. What documents are required as well as the transfer formalities to be done? Here are the answers to all these questions.

Where can I find the name of the car owner?

To check what name the vehicle is registered with, just take a look at the registration certificate, formerly known as gray card. If it is a new car, the buyer’s name is written on this document. In the event of the purchase of a used vehicle, the name mentioned on the registration certificate not that of the seller. How is it possible ?

• The name of several persons, legal or natural, may appear on the registration certificate;
• If the owner does not have the appropriate license for the vehicle category, the license holder is designated as the main holder of the gray card;
• The previous owner has passed away, and the person who inherited the car has decided to put it up for sale. Indeed, in the event that the sale is finalized less than three months following the death, the registration certificate may remain in the name of the deceased. Beyond this period, the gray card must imperatively be in the name of the heir when signing the transfer certificate.

Information obtained from the license plate

Now based on a standardized format, the new vehicle registration system

(SIV) has been applied since April 2009. All license plates are listed on the SIV file. It contains the technical data of the cars listed on the registration certificate, as well as the name, first name and contact details of the owner. However, this information is confidential. Here is the list of organizations that have access to it:

• The police station ;
• The police ;
• Prefectures;
• Judicial officers;
• Insurers;
• State services;
• Credit organizations;
• La Poste;
• Certain automotive professionals.

It is impossible for an individual toaccess the SIV file. The information he can get from the license plate is as follows:

• Make, model, engine, serial number and year of the vehicle;
• The history of the car (number of owners and accidents) as well as the recorded maintenance.

These data are available on certain specialized sites.

How to proceed for a change of owner?

Has the sales contract been signed? It is recommended to settle the transaction by bank transfer or cashier’s check. The next step is to declare the change of ownership. It is possible to go through the State site (ANTS) or to use the services of a licensed automotive professional.

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