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Contracted Plate Search (formerly IVIPS)

What is Contracted Plate Search?

A way for qualified business and government users to search and view Washington state vehicle and vessel records. You can search by VIN, license plate number, boat Hull ID number (HIN), boat WN number, or registered owner name.

Login or sign up for License eXpress to use this system.

Use must comply with:

Who needs a plate search contract?

Any business or agency that has a permissible purpose for accessing vehicle or vessel registration information.

Parties that might need a plate search contract include:

  • Attorneys
  • Insurance agents
  • Private investigators
  • Process servers
  • Vehicle dealers
  • Vehicle wreckers or salvage processors
  • Out‑of‑state tow truck operators
  • Courts
  • Law enforcement agencies
  • Government agencies

Permissible uses include:

  • Processing insurance claims
  • Buying, selling, impounding, or destroying vehicles
  • Administering vehicle taxes
  • Enforcing or administering vehicle‑related laws

If you don’t see your business activity, you can still request a plate search contract. We’ll review your request and determine if your activity qualifies as a permissible purpose.

What you’ll need

  • A computer with any operating system (such as Windows) and any of the following browser software:
    • Microsoft Edge
    • Internet Explorer 7+
    • Safari 5+
    • Chrome 5+
    • Firefox 3.5+
    • Opera 10+
  • Internet access (broadband, DSL, or dial‑up)

How to get started

The steps below should be followed by the person who will act as the administrator for the account. This person will manage system access for their employees.

Step 1: Request a plate search contract

Follow the instructions in the Contracted Plate Search Account Request User Guide to ask for a contract to conduct plate searches.

Step 2: Get access to the system

Once you have a contract to conduct plate searches, follow the instructions in the Administrator Account Access User Guide to set up account access.

Step 3: Prepare staff members to use the system

  1. Create an account access code for each employee who will conduct plate searches (see Administer Employee Account Access in the Administrator Account Access User Guide).
  2. Email the access codes to your employees, who will set up their account access using the instructions in the Employee Account Access User Guide.

Step 4: Conduct searches

Now you are ready to conduct plate searches. Instructions for conducting searches are in the E‑services User Guide.

Contract Compliance

You're required to perform an annual self-assessment of your compliance. The assessment covers:

  • Data security.
  • Permissible use.
  • Subscriber requirements.

You must submit a Self-Assessment Certification before the anniversary date of the contract. If you have subscribers, you must submit a current subscriber roster. The roster must include each subscriber’s:

  • Business/Legal name.
  • The user(s) you authorize in your agreement with each subscriber.

Other requirements

  • You must maintain a current business license.
  • You must provide copy of entire agreement to each user. They must review and sign an Appropriate Use Declaration form.
  • The licensee agreement manager (administrator) must track each user's access.
  • Each user must maintain Inquiry Request Logs. You must keep the logs for a minimum of 3 years.
  • If you provide vehicle or vessel data to an attorney or PI, you must provide written notice to the owner of the requested records within 5 days. You must submit a copy of this notice to our Public Disclosure Unit.

Refer to your contract for the complete requirements.

Questions? Need help?

License eXpress

Contracted plates searches

  • If you have general questions about using the Contracted Plate Search system, email us at

User guides

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