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License and Theft Bureau Photo

About License and Theft Bureau

Brief History

The License and Theft Bureau was created in 1921 by the North Carolina General Assembly. It is the oldest state law enforcement agency in North Carolina. Its initial purpose was to combat vehicle theft, which was rising due to the increase in sales of the Model-T Ford. To address the increase in stolen vehicles of the era, the License and Theft Bureau swore in the first nine state law enforcement officers in North Carolina.

What We Do

The Division of Motor Vehicles employs approximately 150 inspectors who primarily investigate vehicle theft, title fraud, driver license and ID card fraud, and vehicle odometer fraud. They also enforce the rules and regulations governing vehicle dealers, vehicle safety and emissions inspection stations, vehicle towing and storage facilities, and vehicle repair businesses. The Bureau is committed to providing excellent service to North Carolina citizens and visitors.

Did you know?

Today, it is estimated that vehicle theft costs U.S. consumers $8 billion annually.

The License and Theft Bureau is a member of the State Emergency Response Team, which includes assisting the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Administration, and state and local authorities by ensuring security in disaster areas and providing humanitarian relief to victims. Bureau agents also assist local law enforcement in carrying out routine police duties to supplement local agency needs during a declared state of emergency.

Complaint/Investigation Form

For complaints against businesses or individuals that are suspected of being involved in fraud or other questionable activities, please fill out the official complaint form and mail it to the License & Theft Bureau at the address included. The Bureau will determine the most appropriate action based upon your written complaint.

Mail to:
NCDMV License & Theft Bureau
1100 New Bern Ave., MSC 3131
Raleigh, NC 27699

Identity Theft

The Division of Motor Vehicles is striving to take every precaution to prevent Identity Theft. Your driver license and vehicle registration contain a lot of information which is protected by Federal Privacy Mandates and it is very important that you keep this information in a secure location. If your driver license or vehicle registration information has been lost or stolen and you think you are a victim of Identity Theft, you should contact the Division immediately.

According to FBI statistics, Identity Theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States. North Carolinas Division of Motor Vehicles, License and Theft Bureau and the North Carolina Department of Justice is committed to combating this crime in our state through "Operation Stop Identity Fraud".

What is it?

Identity Theft and Identity Fraud are terms used to refer to all types of crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person's personal data in some way that involves fraud or deception, typically for economic gain.

What can you do?

If you think you have been a victim of Identity Theft, you have more than a few options:

Phone the Identity Theft Hotline:
1-877-438-4338

or write to:
Identity Theft Clearinghouse
Federal Trade Commission
600 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington DC 20580


Additionally listed below are a couple of helpful sites regarding protecting your Identity and what to do if you are a victim of ID Theft:

Vehicle Theft

The License and Theft Bureau is our state's designated agency in maintaining and archiving vehicle theft data. Our agents are trained to investigate and assist other agencies in vehicle identification.

National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB)

The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) recommends that owners use the layered approach to ensure their vehicles are protected. See brochure for more details:

NICB Vehicle Theft Brochure (English) / (Spanish)

North Carolina's top stolen vehicles:

Hot Wheels Report 2010

If you have information regarding crimes of vehicle fraud or theft:

  • Contact your local law enforcement agency or Contact Us.

Vehicle Inspection and Title Fraud

Agent Inspecting Vehicle

Crimes relating to vehicle inspection fraud are typically committed by owners and drivers of vehicles which do not meet the safety and/or emissions requirements of North Carolina.

The License and Theft Bureau is charged with the duties of enforcing North Carolina's vehicle safety and emissions inspection laws. It is important that we all ensure that our highways are free of unsafe vehicles and that we place priorities on air quality regarding mobile sources such as motor vehicles.

If you should need assistance about vehicle inspection requirements:

Station Owners

Questions about vehicle inspection training and regulations?

Learn More