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In Wisconsin, the Department of Transportation is responsible for the record keeping and maintenance of vehicle information. They have records regarding the registration and titling of every vehicle in the state. This department assumes the same responsibilities as the DMV in other states.

Why Do a Reverse License Plate Lookup?

There are many reasons you might need to look up a license plate to find information about the vehicle, including but not limited to:

  • You are interested in purchasing a vehicle and want to be sure the seller’s information is accurate
  • You were involved in a hit-and-run and only captured the license plate number of the other vehicle
  • You accidentally hit and damaged a parked car, but you cannot find the owner to tell them
  • You are trying to locate the owner of a vehicle that has been damaged in a natural disaster

If you have been involved in an accident, be sure to contact your local authorities with whatever information you have before you perform a license plate owner lookup. Time is of the essence, and law enforcement officials may have access to records you can’t access yourself.

How to Look up a License Plate Through the DOT

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation has an online search feature which allows you to access information about any motor vehicle registered in the state. By providing the license plate number, you’ll be given access to the registration details of any vehicle. These include the plate number, registration expiration date, the color and make of the vehicle, and the year the vehicle was manufactured.

Expanding Your Information With a Third Party

If you haven’t found the information you need through the DOT website, you can use an online database to access more records. Databases will allow you access to millions of records across all branches of government. If you need to find the registered owner of a vehicle, these databases are your best bet.

Third parties cannot be guaranteed to have the most recent information, because they are run by outside companies rather than the government itself. Most will also charge a fee for the use of their services. Some websites, like this one, will let you run a plate check for free.

Double check the types of information the database provides. You’ll want to sign up with one that will tell you what you need to know. Getting a full name is one thing, but you might need to find the contact information of the vehicle owner as well. You can look up the owner’s name in a third party database to find their address and phone number.