Does a car history report tell me the names of all past owners?

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A vehicle history report will list the number of owners, but not the names. According the the 1994 Drivers Privacy Protection Act, it is illegal for third parties, such as car history report companies, to disclose names and contact information on a VIN Check. Previous owner names can only be released only in special matters involving public safety and legal situations. 

The dearth of other information released in a VIN Check more than compensates for the lack of direct names. Through your a car's 17-character VIN you can find out information on:
  • Lemon history
  • Hail and flood damage
  • Salvage titles
  • Previous number of owners
  • Accident history
  • Registration and titling information
  • Previous use (rental, taxi, police)
  • Emissions inspection results
You can find numerous car history report companies on the Internet. Make sure you choose a reputable company. The better known companies gather information from a massive database, totaling thousands of sources, from police and fire departments, collision shops, auto auctions and motor vehicle offices.

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