May 26, 2016

Kentucky Vehicle Identification Numbers
Where do you get a VIN check in the state of Kentucky?

The Kentucky state law regarding Motor Vehicles can be found in KRS Chapter 367.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet provides motor vehicle history to the public upon request. This government department can therefore provide you with documents which can help clarify:

  • Odometer Discrepancies;
  • Transfer Dates;
  • Owner Information;
  • Salvage Information;
  • Signature Verifications; and
  • To correct any errors which may appear on Kentucky titles.

Forms must be completed and include the $3.00 fee and requests will be processed. You can do this in person with a check made payable to the Kentucky State Treasurer:

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet

Division of Motor Vehicle Licensing

P.O. Box 2014

Frankfort, KY 40622-2014 USA

ATTN: Records Management

The state of Kentucky maintains a website (OVIS) which allows consumers to check the history of motor vehicles. It also has a place where you can check and see if your vehicle has an open recall, as some issues which are covered by recalls pertain to serious safety risks and are fixed for free. You can search to see what taxes were paid on a vehicle in the year 2017 by the VIN number, and certain counties (Bullitt County) has their own webpage on VIN numbers which includes how to get information on VINs and how to replace a VIN number.

The website for Kentucky has a special section notifying residents of vehicles which have been damaged by hurricanes such as Harvey and Irma that have been deemed a total loss may be brought to Kentucky to be “rebuilt.” The state has a list of “considerations” for consumers who are considering purchasing rebuilt vehicles, including:

  • Research any rebuilt vehicle before purchasing it by getting a vehicle history report and having it inspected by an independent mechanic;
  • Know ahead of time that it may be difficult to get a loan or insurance on a rebuilt vehicle;
  • Motorists who drive a rebuilt vehicle back to the state where it was branded with a title of damaged, totaled, or flooded (scrap) run the risk of having the vehicle confiscated if they are stopped by law enforcement; and
  • Vehicles which have been “rebuilt” can’t be sold to consumers in most states in America.

Kentucky’s state VIN search is called OVIS (Online Vehicle Information System.) OVIS provides online access to vehicle title, lien, and registration records in cooperation with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and it is governed by the Federal Driver’s Privacy Protection Act of 2000. However, to use OVIS you must be a registered Kentucky.gov user and authorized to access the information provided through one of the DPPA provisions. Additionally, access to OVIS costs a $75.00 annual subscription fee and $0.44 for each record. If a user searches for a vehicle record, then they will have access to that record for a 60-day period without additional charges.

Kentucky is one of the 36 states which participates fully with the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System. NMVTIS is a database which provides data on cars that have been in recycling yards, junkyards, and salvage yards. They provide information in five key areas which are associated with auto fraud and theft:

  1. Current State Title and Last Title Date;
  2. Brand History – these are descriptive labels applied by motor vehicle titling agencies and include the terms “junk,” “salvage,” and “flood.” This helps protect consumers from purchasing a damaged vehicle without knowing the condition of the car. In Kentucky, which allows consumers to purchase “rebuilt” cars, knowing the history and the “brand” of a car may save you from paying far more than a vehicle is worth or from buying a vehicle which is unsafe or has the potential to be unsafe due to its history;
  3. Odometer Reading – people have been known to “roll the odometer back” to decrease the appearance of miles on a vehicle. This makes the vehicle appear to be worth more than it is worth, and it may also cause a consumer to purchase a vehicle which is unsafe. Odometer readings are recorded at the transfer of the title, so it can be a useful tool to check for any discrepancies of the vehicle’s history;
  4. Total Loss History – when a vehicle has been declared a total loss it has had severe damage. Knowing this information could save a consumer from paying more than what the vehicle is worth or from purchasing a vehicle which is unsafe; and
  5. Salvage History – vehicles with a salvage history have had severe damage. Knowing this information could save you money or save you from purchasing a car that is unsafe.

There is also a free database, VINcheck, which is run by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NCIB.) They provide free VIN checks to the public which will tell you if the car has been reported stolen and not found, and if the vehicle has been in a salvage yard. There are other private and public websites which can be easily found by a quick search on the Internet, but NMVTIS and VINcheck are two that you should absolutely check out before buying a car.

Kentucky State Law:

Kentucky Revised Statutes

Vehicle Records in Kentucky

Request For Vehicle or Boat Records From The State of Kentucky

Governmental Agencies’ Request for Vehicle Records

Request by Towing & Storage Companies and by Creditors in Possession

Vehicle Recalls in Kentucky

Vehicle Taxes paid in 2017 by VIN

Bullitt County Clerk VIN information

Rebuilt Titles/Titling for Hurricane Damaged Vehicles

Driver’s Privacy Protection Act



Why are VIN checks so important in Kentucky?

VIN fraud is illegal and is a felony in both the state of Kentucky and in the United States, including when the VIN is removed during the restoration of a car. One of the best ways to protect yourself from becoming the victim of vehicle fraud is to obtain a Vehicle History Report, which will include information such as:

  • Information on the past owners, including:
    • The number of owners the car has had; and
    • The odometer readings at the time of each change in ownership.
  • Whether there are liens on the vehicle – if you purchase a vehicle which has liens against it then you may be unwittingly assuming those loans when you buy the vehicle. This can even include liens such as child support which are tied to the owner of the car and not to the car itself;
  • Brand History – such as if the car was every used as a police car or a taxi;
  • Title and accident history – this will usually include any accident reports, information regarding whether the car was involved in a flood, whether the car has been in a salvage yard, and will also tell you the name of the legal owner of the car;
  • Odometer settings and rollback alerts – sellers of cars have been known to “rollback” the numbers on the odometer so that the car appears to have lower mileage which increases the value of the car; and
  • “Lemon” determination – a VIN check will alert you if your car has been deemed a “lemon” and been repurchased by the manufacturer.

Some VIN checks may even tell you information as specific as the dates of servicing of the vehicle or if it has previously been sold at an auction.

Lemon Law in Kentucky

Lemon laws in the State of Kentucky are formally called Kentucky’s Motor Vehicle Law, Revised Statutes Sections and can be found in KRS Chapter 367.840 through 367.846. The lemon law in Kentucky doesn’t cover all vehicles [motor homes, motorcycles, mopeds, farm tractors and farm machines vehicles with more than two (2) axles and vehicles which have been substantially altered after the initial sale are not covered.]

The only vehicles that can be covered by the Kentucky lemon law must meet the following conditions:

  • A vehicle intended for use and operation on public highways;
  • A vehicle which is required to be registered in the state of Kentucky;
  • A vehicle which has been finally and completely assembled and is in the possession of the manufacturer, wholesaler, or an authorized motor vehicle dealer; and
  • A vehicle which is new and on which the original title has not previously been issued.

Additionally, Motor Vehicle Dealers are required by Kentucky state law to be honest with you and requires a Dealer to fully disclose prior to you purchasing a car any previous damage to the vehicle. If the retail cost of the vehicle was $1000 or greater and the damage occurred while the vehicle was still in the possession of the Dealer, the Dealer is required to give the Buyer a written statement regarding the damages of the vehicle and the Buyer must sign the damage disclosure document. Therefore, it would be wise to get everything that you are promised by the car dealer in writing so that there can be no discrepancies in what was promised.

The Kentucky lemon law is intended to help protect consumers who have purchased a lemon a vehicle with a fault that affects its value, safety, or operation. Vehicles which have been leased after July 15th, 1998 are covered by the New Lemon Law. These problems are referred to as “non-conformities” or even “defects,” and are issues which are not specifically named in the manufacturer’s warranty.

To qualify as a lemon in the state of Kentucky:

  • The automobile must have been purchased new in Kentucky by a Kentucky residents and not have more than two (2) axles. Motorcycles, motorhomes, conversion van, and farm equipment are exempt from lemon law protection. New vehicles which are leased after July 15, 1998 are also covered;
  • The consumer must report the failure to repair the defect or non-conformity to the manufacturer within the first 12,000 miles or the first twelve (12) months, whichever comes first;
  • The consumer must report the failure to repair the defect or the non-conformity to the manufacturer within the first twelve (12) months or 12,000 miles, whichever occurs first;
  • The problem must substantially impair the use, value, or the safety of the automobile;
  • The issue, or defect, can’t be repaired after a reasonable number of attempts [four (4) attempts to repair the same problem is presumed to be reasonable,] or the vehicle has been out of service for a cumulative total of at least thirty (30) days.

Many manufacturers have arbitration systems to resolve lemon law disputes and the state of Kentucky requires that manufacturers of new motor vehicles provide purchasers of new motor vehicles with a cost-free informal dispute resolution system. The decision of the dispute resolution system is binding to the manufacturer but not to the consumer. The Kentucky Attorney General has a list of car manufacturers which have an informal dispute resolution system for automobiles to meet certain state guidelines, but some manufacturers will arbitrate beyond the legal limits set by the Kentucky.

If you believe that your car is a lemon you should contact the manufacturer, the Better Business Bureau, and the Kentucky Attorney General. Consumers must go through the manufacturer’s arbitration system (if they offer one) before they are able to file a suit in the court system. Manufacturers must also provide you free arbitration up to two (2) years after the date of purchase, or lease, or 25,000 miles (whichever occurs first.) During this time the consumer can begin an informal dispute resolution.

The Better Business Bureau handles many of the complaints in the arbitration cases and even has phone numbers available for complaints.

  • Contact the national BBB to file lemon law complains against certain manufacturers (except Ford and Chrysler) at (800) 955-5100;
  • Central/Eastern Kentucky (Lexington) (status of complaints) – (859)-259-1008; and
  • Louisville/Western Kentucky (status of complaints) – (800) 388-2222.

Under the Lemon Law in the state of Kentucky, manufacturers are required to either refund or replace the vehicle in accordance with KRS 367.842. This means that you could be compensated for the following:

  • The purchase price of the vehicle, minus a reasonable allowance for the time the vehicle was in use and not out of service;
  • Finance charges;
  • Fees, including license and registration;
  • Sales tax;
  • Charges, including government and collateral. OR
  • A comparable vehicle replacement, not including any reasonable allowances.

Some helpful hints for arbitration:

  • Manufacturers are required to inform you of your rights under the Lemon Law in writing;
  • Sellers are required to notify buyers in writing, of any motor vehicle damages resulting in repair costs or with an estimated cost of $1000.00 or more;
  • If the nonconformity of your vehicle can’t be repaired in the first 12,000 miles or 12 months, you must notify the manufacturer in writing;
  • Your vehicle won’t be covered under the Lemon Law if you have altered it significantly after you purchased the vehicle;
  • If the manufacturer fails to do their part regarding the Lemon Law, it’s in your best interest to contact a Lemon Law Attorney.

Kentucky State Law

Kentucky State Lemon Law:

New Car Lemon Law

Kentucky Lemon Law

Better Business Bureau Information regarding Kentucky’s Lemon Law

DMV.org information on Kentucky’s Lemon Law

Lemon Law information from the Kentucky Attorney General

Free Lemon Law Help

Lemon Law by the Kentucky Attorney General

Links For Consumers Provided By The Kentucky Attorney General

Better Business Bureau

Automobile Publications from the FTC

– an online publication from the Federal Trade Commission on automotive issues such as car repairs and automobile financing;

Better Business Bureau Auto Line

Phone numbers to call the BBB to report problems:

National BBB to file Lemon Law complaints against certain manufacturers (except Ford and Chrysler) – (800) 955-5100

Central/Eastern Kentucky (Lexington) (status of complaints) – (859)-259-1008

Louisville/Western Kentucky (status of complaints) – (800) 388-2222

Kentucky Informal Dispute Resolution


Get a complete title history report from the CarFax service of the National Automobile Dealers Association. This report includes information regarding possible odometer rollbacks, rebuilt autos, and more. The CarFax service does cost a fee.

Edmunds Car Buying Guide

Provides guides to features (MSRP and invoice,) technical info on automobiles, industry news including recalls. One free request is permitted for up to date pricing on an auto (rebates, etc.) with fees for subsequent records.

Do you need to hire an attorney for a lemon law case in Kentucky?

While it is not necessary to hire an attorney for a lemon law case, it may be a wise decision depending on the amount of time that you are able to commit to fighting a large company and your knowledge of the law and the legal system. If you do not have an attorney, the Kentucky Bar Association has a Lawyer Locator Service that you can contact at (502) 564-3795 or via their website.

You are searching for an attorney who:

  • Seek experienced attorneys – A Kentucky lawyer who specializes in lemon law cases will have specialized knowledge in relevant Kentucky laws and procedures;
  • Comes highly recommended – ask friends and family if they know any good attorneys. Ask for a recommendation from people you know who may have worked with lemon law lawyers before;
  • Schedule a consultation – book a free consultation with a few lemon law attorneys so that you can learn more about them and their experience; and
  • Ask about their fees – Make sure that you understand how much the attorney charges and when you will be expected to pay (up front, installments, after the case, or do they take the case on a contingency basis?)

DMV.org information on Kentucky’s Lemon Law

Kentucky Bar Association Lawyer Association

What are some of the benefits of hiring an attorney for a lemon law case?

It is important to remember that the manufacturer of the car and the dealers will have legal experts on their side and you might want the same kind of expertise on your side. A lawyer will represent you in court, but they will also:

  • Explain the lemon law in the state of Kentucky to you and help you to understand both the process and the possible outcomes;
  • Help you to gather all the necessary documents;
  • Help to ensure that the manufacturer is treating you fairly;
  • Help save you time by handling the communication and other actions on your behalf; and
  • Help you to navigate the courts and the legal terms.

Kentucky Bar Association Lawyer Locator

Lemon Laws for Used Cars in Kansas

Some states have a used car lemon law in their specific state, and Kansas has is one of the states that has a quite a few depending on the situation:

  • Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act – This federal law applies to used-car buyers nationwide. It basically serves to force manufacturers (not just car manufacturers) to abide by their warranty, including written or implied warranties and service contracts for any used cars. Implied warranties are un-spoken or unwritten promises offered by the seller to the buyer, including expectations that the used car you purchased should work as expected based on the age, mileage, and price of the car;
  • Used Car Rule – The Federal Trade Commission’s Used Car Rule requires each dealership to display a buyer’s guide on every car it sells in a prominent place. This applies to all vehicles, including demonstration cars, leased cars, and light-duty vans and trucks. Consumers should keep the Buyer’s Guide, or get a copy because the guide itself is part of the sales contract and it can be used to override any conflicting statements in the regular contract which you are given by the salesman;
  • New-Car Lemon Laws – in Kansas, unlike other states, lemon laws pertain to some recent model vehicles which have been purchased as used cars. If the car’s problems were reported to the manufacturer or the dealer during the term of any warranty or during the 12 months after the car was delivered to the first owner, it’s possible that you will have recourse based on the original warranty.

The state law says that the manufacturer or dealer must either replace the vehicle with comparable vehicle or accept the return of the car and refund the purchase price (minus an allowance for the use of the vehicle.) If this transfer takes place during the first twelve (12) months, the first 12,000 miles, or during the terms of any warranties then the purchaser of the used car may have legal options;

  • Unfair and Deceptive Acts and Practices Laws – when a car salesman gives you deceptive information on the car, you can use the Unfair and Deceptive Acts and Practices Law to get recourse. If the dealer failed to provide information about problems with the vehicle, you can use this act to get recourse;
  • Truth in Mileage Act – created in 1986, the Federal Truth in Mileage Act, helps consumers deal with fraudulent odometer readings. It’s estimated that at least 3.5% of used vehicles have rolled-back odometers. If you find out that your vehicle’s odometer was altered, then you can get recourse or compensation through this law.

New-Car Lemon Laws

Used Car Lemon Laws

Recommendations to protect yourself from being the victim of a lemon law

Some recommendations to protect yourself from a possible lemon law include:

  • Read and UNDERSTAND the warranty before purchasing the car;
  • Keep a copy of the receipt and the information you receive when you purchase and take possession of the car;
  • Follow recommendations in the owner’s manual when it comes to recommended car maintenance;
  • Contact the dealer immediately if you are having problems;
  • If you begin to experience problems keep all the documentation together, including receipts, emails and notes from telephone conversations;
  • If you decide to consult with an attorney and do not have one, contact the Kentucky Bar Association Lawyers Referral Service at 208-334-4500 or online via their website;
  • When mailing paperwork to the dealer always use certified mail;
  • Contact the Better Business Bureau at 800-955-5100; and
  • Contact the Kentucky Office of the Attorney General at 800-432-3545 or via the website.

Kentucky Office of the Attorney General

Kentucky Bar Association Lawyer Association

Kentucky Motor Vehicle Licensing
Department of Transportation
200 Mero St
1 502-564-2737

Fayette County Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
Keithshire Place
3301 Keithshire Way #125
1 859-246-2106

Drivers License Bureau
Department of Motor Vehicles
501 High St
1 502-564-6800

Fayette County Circuit Court’s Division of Driver’s License
Driver’s License Office
1591 Winchester Rd #103
1 859-246-2153

Jefferson County Circuit Court Clerk
City Clerk’s Office
600 W Jefferson St #2008
1 502-595-3055

Driver’s License
Department of Motor Vehicles
100 Justice Way
1 270-889-6540

Clark County Driver’s License
Department of Motor Vehicles
17 Cleveland Ave
1 859-737-7281

Jessamine County Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
107 N Main St #4
1 859-885-4531

Drivers License Department
Department of Motor Vehicles
120 E Dixie Ave
1 270-766-5001

Drivers License Office
Department of Motor Vehicles
330 York St #1
1 859-292-6311

Madison County Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
135 W Irvine St # 101
1 859-624-4715

Bowman Field Driver’s License
Department of Motor Vehicles
3501 Roger E Schupp St
1 502-595-4405
Closing soon: 12:30 PM

Hopkins County Circuit Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
120 E Center St
1 270-824-7503

Drivers License Bureau
County Government Office
8330 W Main St #2
1 859-635-5240

Boyle County Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
321 W Main St #113
1 859-239-7456

Jefferson County Clerk’s Office -DMV
Department of Motor Vehicles
12312 Shelbyville Rd
1 502-574-5700

Mercer County Circuit Clerk
State Government Office
224 S Main St
1 859-734-8452

Circuit Court Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
203 N Court St #7
1 270-465-6686

Madison County Motor Vehicles
Department of Motor Vehicles
Madison County Courthouse
101 W Main St
1 859-624-4703

Pike Vehicle Registration
Department of Motor Vehicles
146 Main St
1 606-432-6249

Commonwealth of Kentucky Driver License
Driver’s License Office
7509 Outer Loop
1 502-239-4292

Circuit Court Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
136 S Main St
1 270-338-4850

Carroll Circuit Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
802 Clay St # 2
1 502-732-4305

Harrison County Circuit Clerk
No reviews · Department of Motor Vehicles
115 Joe B Hall Ct # 1
1 859-234-1914

Circuit Court Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
200 W 4th St #104
1 270-726-9957

Auto License Department
Department of Motor Vehicles
1 Cs-1066 # 2
1 859-498-8700

Boone County Court Clerk’s Office
City Government Office
6025 Rogers Ln
1 859-334-2229

Drivers License Bureau
Department of Motor Vehicles
310 Main St
1 859-987-2609

Garrard County Circuit Ct Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
7 Public Square
1 859-792-2961

Bracken County Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
116 Miami St
1 606-735-2952

Kenton County Driver’s License
Department of Motor Vehicles
1655 Delaware Crossing
1 859-356-5925

Russell County Circuit Ct Clrk
Department of Motor Vehicles
202 Monument Sq # 106
1 270-343-2185

Circuit Clerk
908 3rd St #109
1 606-297-9567

Driver’s License
Driver’s License Office
250 Frank E Simon Ave
1 502-543-2511

Trimble County Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
30 US-42
1 502-255-7174

Kenton County Clerk’s Office
County Government Office
303 Court St
1 859-392-1600

Hancock County Attorneys Office
Department of Motor Vehicles
225 Main Cross Street
1 270-927-6247

Washington County Drivers Lcns
Department of Motor Vehicles
100 E Main St
1 859-336-1070

Green County Circuit Crt Clrk
Department of Motor Vehicles
200 W Court St #101
1 270-932-5631

Hardin County Clerk’s Office – Radcliff Branch
Local Government Office
210 Freedoms Way
1 270-351-8015

Search Results
Boone County Clerk
County Government Office
8100 Ewing Blvd # 120
1 859-647-8702

Oldham County Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
100 W Main St
1 502-222-1979

Corbin Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
Corbin City Clerk
805 S Main St #10
1 606-523-1085

Boone County Motor Vehicles
Department of Motor Vehicles
2950 Washington St
1 859-334-2108

Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
172 Division St
1 606-433-7563

Drivers License Bureau
Department of Motor Vehicles
1536 Winchester Ave #19
1 606-325-2722

County Clerk
County Government Office
2950 Washington St
1 859-334-2108

Campbell County Clerk
County Government Office
1098 Monmouth St
1 859-292-3850
Closing soon: 12:00 PM

Driver Licensing Department
Department of Motor Vehicles
8120 Dream St
1 859-431-1072

Carter County Clerk
County Government Office
300 W Main St #232
1 606-474-5188

Fleming County Clerk
Department of Motor Vehicles
100 Court Sq
1 606-845-8461

Circuit Court
County Court
200 Plaza Dr
1 502-348-3648

Logan County Clerk
County Court
229 W 3rd St
1 270-726-6061

Kenton County Driver’s License
Department of Motor Vehicles
230 Madison Ave
1 859-292-6579

Kenton County Courthouse – Independence
5272 Madison Pike
1 859-392-1652

Shelby County Drivers License
Department of Motor Vehicles
401 Main St #14
1 502-633-1287

Circuit Court
Department of Motor Vehicles
35 Us Highway 41a S , Dixon, KY 42409
1 270-639-9160

Hardin County Vehicle Registration
Local Government Office
150 N Provident Way #103
1 270-765-4115

Jefferson County Driver’s License
County Government Office
2900 W Broadway
1 502-595-4924

Drive Jefferson
Driver’s License Office
200 Juneau Dr
1 502-244-6097

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