Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC - Misuse of Vehicle Registration

Have you recently received a citation for having violated Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC? If so, there’s a lot to understand about what it is, what it means, and what you can do about it. Below, we’ve got all of that information and more, including:

What is Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC?

In order to get a clear understanding of just what this violation means, let’s start with the formal California legislation. This states this violation as being: “[a] person shall not display upon a vehicle, nor present to any peace officer, any registration card, identification card, temporary receipt, license plate, temporary license plate…or permit not issued for that vehicle or not otherwise lawfully used thereon under this code.”

In simpler terms, it means that you can’t show a registration or ID card, temporary document, or permit that is mismatched to the vehicle you’re driving.  Any documentation has to be valid and unaltered for the driver and/or vehicle that you’re driving.

What does it mean to have violated Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC?

Any time that you get a violation, it’s pretty scary. Many people find that getting a citation for a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation is both scary and confusing. Here’s the information that you need to know about this violation, as shown through a fictional California driver named Charla.

Charla is driving to her friend’s house and fails to stop at a stop sign. A peace officer pulls her over and asks to see her registration and license. The registration that Charla hands over is actually for her roommate’s car, rather than hers. She hands it over to the peace officer knowing that it is the wrong registration. In this case, she’d be guilty of a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation.

In another situation, Charla is driving home from the grocery store when a peace officer pulls her over to let her know that she has a burnt-out taillight. While running the plates to check for any other tickets or warrants (which is normal), the peace officer discovers that the plates are actually licensed to another car, rather than the one that Charla is driving. The registration card also confirms that the plates are different. Charla would be guilty of a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation because she is knowingly driving a car with the incorrect license plates (which are registered to certain cars at the DMV).

Lastly, let’s say Charla is driving home from work with a trailer attached to her vehicle. She has a permit for it, but it’s only a temporary one, or it’s invalid because it is actually a permit for her roommate’s car, and not hers. In showing the temporary or invalid permit, knowing that   it is incorrect, Charla is guilty of a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation.

It’s important to understand, too, that the key point of this violation is that Charla is doing it knowingly. Let’s say her roommate switched their license plates with hers as a gag and Charla doesn’t know. Or, she doesn’t realize that she grabbed her roommate’s registration papers instead of her own. Or, Charla is told that the permit for the trailer is valid for her own vehicle. In any and all of these situations, Charla genuinely doesn’t realize that she’s done anything wrong and would be considered innocent of a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation.

What can I do about this violation?

If you’ve received this violation, then you can be charged a fine of up to $1, 000 and spend up to 6 months in a county jail or on probation in lieu of jail time. These punishments are standard for a misdemeanor offense. Often, the offense can be expunged off of a person’s record at the end of the case when the punishment is served, but it does depend on the court and the driver’s previous record and convictions.

If you believe that a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation has been given to you by mistake (for example, you didn’t realize you had a temporary permit for your trailer), then you can opt to fight the citation in a court of law.

Other possible Vehicle Code violation connections

There are a few violations in the code that can be connected to a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation. Some of the closest options include:

  • Vehicle Code 31 VC: This violation refers to knowingly presenting false information to a peace officer when asked for it during a stop.
  • Vehicle 4462 VC: This is the “parent” violation of this one. In this case, the violation means that you are refusing to show registration when directly asked by peace officers.
  • Vehicle 4463 VC: This violation refers to deliberately falsifying a DMV document (or plate) and handing it over to a peace officer with the knowledge that you did modify or falsify it.
  • Vehicle 4463b VC: As the letter states, this is related to the one above and refers to forging false disabled placards or permits.

In some cases, depending on the violation, these additional violations may be added as additional ones since they are often interlinked. In other situations, one or more of these may be cited to you in place of a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC if it’s thought to be more accurate. It depends on the court ruling and the decision of the peace officer who is issuing the ticket.

Is this ticket eligible for traffic school?

Unfortunately, no, this ticket is not eligible for traffic school, even with an accredited school such as MM TRAFFIC SCHOOL. This is because traffic school eligibility has to do with receiving a moving violation (such as failing to stop at a stop sign). Since a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation is more of a “bureaucratic” violation, there is the ability to attend traffic school in order to mask the citation from your record.

If you’d like more information on this or are curious about what you can do with this violation, please feel free to contact us and we’ll answer any questions or concerns that you may have. You can also reach out to the court that issued your ticket, as they’d be more familiar with your case’s specific details.

How can I avoid a citation for a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation?

Avoiding any citation is always a good idea, but especially one as tricky as a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation! However, like a lot of  paperwork-based offenses, they are avoidable when it comes to being organized.

In this case, you can avoid a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation by making sure that license plates, permits, registration, and more, are all matched to your vehicle, and that all are permanent rather than temporary. Registrations will state clearly what license plates and cars they’re matched to, making it simple to check and match to the vehicle that you’re driving. Since license plates are attached to vehicles, all you’d need to do in this case is make sure that no one removes them or modifies them.

When it comes to something like a permit, such as a trailer, you’ll need to understand what the restrictions are for this. For example, is it valid only to the vehicle towing it (this is often the case)? Is it only a temporary one? If so, when does it expire? Before you put any permits into use on the road, make sure that you understand their restrictions and expiry dates so that you aren’t using them incorrectly or illegally.

If you have any uncertainties about registration paperwork, license plate tampering, or permit restrictions, it’s a great idea to simply check in with your local DMV to get the concrete answers. This will help you feel much more informed and, hopefully, help you avoid a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation! Please keep in mind: a Vehicle Code 4462.5 VC violation only applies when you are knowingly using registration, license plates, or permits that are invalid. If you genuinely don’t know that they are invalid, you’d be technically innocent of the violation.



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