Borrowers Beware

Have you ever borrowed a friend, family member or co-worker’s car without first checking that it is registered? Most of us would assume, when borrowing a car that it is  registered. But borrowers should beware, if you are caught driving an unregistered vehicle, you may be slapped with a fine, whether or not you are the vehicle owner.

As of 1 January 2014 registration labels have not been issued and are no longer required to be displayed on all light vehicles registered in Victoria, including cars. The small change is set to save Victorians millions of dollars, but some are concerned that the change might lead to an increase in unregistered vehicle related offences and fines.

Section 7 of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic) makes it an offence to use an unregistered vehicle on a highway, failing a permit to do so. Any driver, whether or not they are the owner of the vehicle or not, may still be fined if caught driving an unregistered vehicle. Persons who are thinking about borrowing their friend or family member’s car can no longer just check the sticker on the front windscreen but should ensure that they enquire about the registration status of the car before taking it out on the roads. Employees driving company cars should also do the same because although the company might end up covering the fine, any demerit points will fall on the driver.

Driver’s borrowing someone else’s car should take the time to ensure that the vehicle is registered. Anyone can check the registration status of a vehicle by entering the plate details online at vre.vicroads.vic.gov.au or simply by calling VicRoads on 13 11 71.

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