My Vehicle is NOT recorded Stolen – PNC LoS on, off, on ….

You have reported your vehicle stolen to the police but we have informed you that it is not (or no longer) on PNC as LoS:

LoS – lost or stolen
PNC – police national computer

If the vehicle has not been placed on PNC as LoS following a report of its theft, this will raise questions, for example:

  • was the report/allegation made to the police?
  • has the vehicle been located?
  • are the police treating the allegation as a crime?

In the usual course of events, we will check whether your vehicle is on PNC, confirm the crime has been reported.  This involves a straightforward, quick enquiry but lacks detail. If we need more information, a formal approach needs to be made, often at a cost to your insurer – for more information about what you can do to assist, click here.

Having been instructed about your vehicle, we regularly review its status – we monitor most VRMs encountered.  A reason we monitor the LoS register is that, if the marker falls away, it usually means the vehicle has been located, in which case we:

  • advise an insured so that they may contact the police, ascertain the whereabouts of the vehicle and in an ideal world, be reunited with their vehicle
  • notify the insurer so they may make contact with the police and ascertain the location/condition of the vehicle and if in storage (at £20/day) collect it.

IMPORTANT – if we inform you that the vehicle is no longer recorded stolen and ask you to make enquiries of the police, we are not being lazy, we are not asking you to do our work.  Astoundingly, despite the pressures the police are under, that we are here to assist, there remains a ‘them and us’ attitude and it is very unlikely a constabulary will speak with us about the recovery.  It matters not that your insurer has a  substantial interest in the vehicle (they are being asked to pay its value), the police will likely cite ‘you are not the victim’ or ‘DPA …’.  It appears not to have occurred to the police that they could assist you by helping us.

And who informed you of the ‘recovery’; did we tell you before the police?  If so, does this not appear odd?

However, assuming we have informed you the vehicle is no longer on PNC LoS, please act promptly and make enquiry fo the constabulary recording the crime as they may have your vehicle and because mistakes happen.

We have become increasingly concerned about the number of VRMs ‘falling off’ PNC LoS which have NOT been found.  Having raised this with a constabulary, the response was:

It appears failure to confirm the report of LoS on PNC by the police will cause the LoS record/entry to be auto-weeded and ‘falloff’, the PNC LoS marker to be removed.

Accordingly, any enquiry of the VRM will reveal no record of the stolen status, it will appear ‘clear’ of interest.

National Policy dictates that an unconfirmed report remains on the system for 6 weeks.

Therefore, if a stolen report is not ‘confirmed’ (as stolen) by an officer, after 6 weeks the PNC LoS marker automatically drops off the system.  Is this common?  Please see below the figures from one UK constabulary that indicate more than 3 such markers are removed each week.

What does this mean for you the insured, your insurers and others:

  • No PNC LoS will need to be explained – giving rise to delays
  • The PNC LoS marker will need to be reinstated if ‘weeded’ inappropriately
  • Any police officer or possibly a parking authority uplifting the car (if parked illegally) inquiring about the car, will not be alerted to the stolen status
  • Public-facing registers such as MyCarCheck, MotorCheck, Experian and HPI will not convey the stolen status:
    • an avenue of enquiry/recovery will be missed
    • an innocent purchaser may acquire the vehicle

We provide this monitoring service for insureds and insurers a spin-off of which is a safety-net for the police; if a VRM is weeded incorrectly, the police will be alerted to the situation promptly and be able to act before any harm occurs.  It remains disappointing that such notification often has to be via an insured!

FoIA response by a constabulary to a request for ‘unconfirmed’ reports

During a period between March 2019 and February 2020 due to a change in the procedures within force contact a small number of reports 130 which were initially entered as stolen reports pending the complainant reporting the full details of the incident online were not made subject of a crime report so were not confirmed, these were checked at a point one and two weeks later and the 130 reports had not been crimed so were therefore not confirmed and would have weeded off after six weeks.

The 130 reports were not reinstated as the reports were not substantiated.

Hendon issue weekly daily action files warning of loss reports that are due to weed.

However as vehicle updates are restricted to a team of about 24 staff within the PNC bureau the staff perform a weekly VODs search to check all stolen reports owned by [constabulary] Police and check that all are confirmed so will remain on the system for 6 years. Prior to the change of command and control system the force did not confirm the loss until we were in possession of a crime number but not closing the log until the reference number was available. Under the new control system this function is no longer available so we now confirm the entry against the incident number at the time of the original report so none will weed before six years. We still perform the weekly VODs check to ensure that any human error is detected and all reports are confirmed.