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Car licence plate cloned? Here is what you can do.


The cloning of vehicle licence plates is fast becoming a common occurrence nationwide and, while it is a major inconvenience for the victims, it can also create a host of legal problems.

Among the problems created by fraudulently cloned licence plates are strikes against the victim’s driver’s licence once the new D-merit system comes into play, difficulties renewing vehicle licences and someone else’s unpaid e-toll bill being sent your way.

Once the D-merit system is activated, traffic violations like speeding fines are strikes against your licence and, once there are too many D-merits, the licence is suspended.

Fraudsters’ speeding fines are sent to the actual owner of the cloned licence plate, meaning the victim is eligible to pay the fines or face the D-merits.

Unresolved speeding fines could prevent the holder from renewing the vehicle’s licence disc.

While renewals will not be refused if the traffic fine is in the early stages – if it has not yet been served – any stage passed this could complicate a licence disc renewal.

E-toll bills have been the bane of many people’s lives for a while now and many people living nowhere near Gauteng are receiving E-toll bills after the cloning of their plates.

This essentially means the e-toll bill is sent to the legal owner of the plate that has been cloned, while the driver of the vehicle with the cloned plate enjoys a free ride.

While these problems are primarily administrative issues, relatively easily sorted out by paperwork, the more serious side to licence plate cloning is when a cloned plate is used in a robbery or involved in an accident.

The rightful owner of the licence plate could get a visit from police officers or, worse, receive a warrant for their arrest.

So how can cloned plates be replaced?

Firstly, as soon as it becomes apparent that your licence plate has been cloned, open a case at your local police station.

This will create a record of the cloning of the plate, should it be implicated in any illegal activities.

After opening a case, visit your nearest Department of Transport office and complete the appropriate form, providing supporting documentation and a copy of your identity document.

A pro-rata licence fee is payable to the appropriate registering authority.
It is thought the new licence plate regulations planned for implementation later this year will increase licence plate security.

Source: Compare Guru

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