Insurance VIN Check – Benefits of the Insurance VIN Check-Up

An insurance VIN check is a process where the insurance company verifies the vehicle identification number of a vehicle before proceeding to provide coverage. Insurance companies do this when clients apply for a car insurance quote as they need it to retrieve vehicle-specific data and it also helps them offer more accurate quotes.

Insurance VIN Check - Benefits of the Insurance VIN Check-Up

Vehicle Identification Number

The VIN is a 17-character code that identifies each vehicle and separates it from other vehicles. It has different details that make it stand out from other vehicles such as the car make, model, engine type, assembly plant, etc.

It is usually located on the dashboard or door jamb of the driver’s side while offering other important information which includes the engine type and the details of the original product.

The VIN can be used to find out several information such as how frequently a car has been purchased or whether it has ever been involved in a recall.

The numbers form a unique combination that goes from tracking a car from the factory and even to the junkyard.

The number is broken down to mean the following:

World Manufacturer Identifier: This refers to the first three digits of the VIN. It indicates the vehicle’s manufacturer, country of origin, production type, region, and manufacturing division.

Vehicle Description: This refers to the next six digits. It indicates the model, body, engine, car restraint system, transmission, and fraud detector.

Vehicle identifier: This refers to the final eight digits that represent the year, the manufacturing facility as well as the distinct serial number that was assigned to the car during the assembling process.

How The VIN Check is Done by Insurance Companies

As earlier said, car insurance companies verify that they have the correct vehicle identification number before proceeding to file a new policy.

Most companies ensure they see the VIN and check its authenticity before issuing a new policy or giving out a quote.

A VIN check is usually done electronically by accessing the VIN decoder. The check is done to confirm if the vehicle details match the application as well as to detect any red flags like a stolen vehicle, salvage title, etc. This helps assess and discover any potential risk.

The check verifies the VIN is valid and not associated with any title/brand issues. It also confirms the vehicle year, make model, and other specifications match as provided in the insurance application.

It also screens for odometer discrepancies which could indicate hidden damage or prior accidents.

The VIN Check flags stolen vehicles, flood/fire damage history, and salvage titles which indicate a higher risk of future claims. Coverage may be denied or have higher premiums in this scenario.

VIN check helps detect fraud and avoid ensuring high-risk vehicles without proper underwriting based on full vehicle history.

It is important to note that a VIN check by insurance companies is a due diligence check done by insurers to validate vehicle details and detect red flags before binding an auto insurance policy.

Benefits of the Insurance VIN Check-Up

There are several benefits of the insurance VIN checkup by insurance companies and they are listed below:

Accurate Vehicle Identification:

A VIN check ensures that the vehicle’s identity is accurately verified. This helps prevent cases of mistaken identity, ensuring that the insurance policy covers the intended vehicle.

Verification of Vehicle History:

Insurance companies often use VIN checks to verify the vehicle’s history, including any previous accidents, repairs, or other damages. This information helps in assessing the risk associated with ensuring the vehicle and determining the appropriate premium.

Fraud Prevention:

VIN checks can help prevent insurance fraud by confirming the authenticity of the vehicle’s details. This reduces the likelihood of insuring stolen vehicles or vehicles with altered identities.

Determining Vehicle Value:

VIN checks may provide information about the vehicle’s make, model, year, and other specifications, which helps in determining its market value. This is essential for calculating the appropriate coverage and compensation in case of a total loss or theft.

Compliance and Regulatory Requirements:

Many insurance regulators and agencies require insurance companies to perform VIN checks to ensure compliance with legal and regulatory requirements. This helps maintain transparency and accountability in the insurance industry.

Customer Peace of Mind:

For policyholders, VIN checks provide peace of mind knowing that their insurance coverage is based on accurate information about their vehicle. It also assures them that their insurer is taking necessary steps to mitigate risks and prevent fraud.

Potential Downsides of the Insurance VIN Check-Up

While VIN checks offer various benefits, there can also be potential downsides or limitations, below are some of them:


Performing VIN checks may incur additional costs for insurance companies, which could potentially be passed on to customers through higher premiums or fees.

Privacy Concerns:

Some individuals may have privacy concerns when it comes to sharing their vehicle’s VIN and related information.

They may worry about how this information is stored, used, and protected by insurance companies or third-party providers.

Limited Information:

While VIN checks provide valuable information about a vehicle’s history, they may not always capture every detail.

Certain incidents or maintenance records may not be available or accessible through VIN checks, potentially leading to incomplete assessments of the vehicle’s condition and risk profile.

Dependency on Data Accuracy:

The effectiveness of VIN checks relies on the accuracy and completeness of the data available in databases.

Errors or discrepancies in these databases could lead to incorrect assessments of a vehicle’s history or condition, affecting insurance decisions and premiums.


Requiring VIN checks as part of the insurance process may add an extra step for policyholders, potentially causing inconvenience or delays in obtaining coverage.

Potential for Misuse:

There’s a risk that VIN information collected during insurance processes could be misused for purposes other than insurance, such as targeted marketing or identity theft if proper safeguards are not in place.

How to do the Insurance VIN Check

The Insurance VIN check is easy to perform, follow the steps listed below for you:

  • Collect all the necessary information concerning the VIN and the Vehicle details
  • Visit the website of the NICB (National Insurance Crime Bureau)
  • Click the camera icon to upload a picture of the VIN you wish to check
  • Accept the terms and conditions of use
  • Click “Search VIN”
  • Follow the on-screen instructions


Can I Get Auto Insurance Without my VIN Checked?

In many cases, auto insurance companies will require a VIN check as part of the underwriting process.

However, there may be some situations where you can obtain auto insurance without having your VIN checked, but they are typically exceptions rather than the norm.

Here are a few scenarios where this might occur:

  • New Policy with Pending Vehicle Purchase
  • Non-Standard Insurance Companies
  • Fleet Insurance
  • State Regulations

Where can I find my VIN?

You can find your VIN on your vehicle or some of your documents, below are some of the places you can find them:

  • Title documents
  • Vehicle registration
  • Bottom of your vehicle’s windshield
  • The dashboard interior on the driver’s side
  • The driver’s side door jamb

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