Who owns “your” car?

A Certificate Of Title is not a title.  A Certificate Of Title is a statement, by the owner, stating that title exists. The government owns your car.

A license plate is proof that the government owns the car.  You exchanged ownership of the vehicle for the plates that they forced you to put on their car. The Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin (or Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin in some States) was the title, but you surrendered it to be a “registered owner” or “Legal Owner”.

Don’t be fooled by lawyer weasel words. Phrases like “Legal Title” and “Legal Owner” DO NOT recognize any “beneficial interest in the property, another person being equitably entitled thereto”. You don’t have rights to their car except those few rights that they let you enforce in their courts.

A car title gives no right to the car


who owns your car?
Their terminology “legal owner” did not show up in Black’s Law Dictionary until the 1979 edition. Notice that “the title may actually carry no rights to the property.”

Since they own “your” car, their police can pull over their car for any reason and demand proof that that you are complying with the rules that you agreed to. You can even be handcuffed and jailed for failing to wear a seatbelt in their car. People have been tasered for not wearing a seatbelt. They can impound their car for almost any reason and force you to pay the outrageous impound fees, because you pre-agreed to pay when you registered their car.  They can put you in jail, prevent you from redeeming your impounded car, and after 120 hours “your” car is considered abandoned.   Don’t claim to live in a free country if you have never seen freedom.  If you don’t know how to defend yourself in their courts, you will lose.

Since they own the car, their agents can go into your driveway and put a GPS tracking device on “your” car, without a warrant and without your knowledge. The Fourth Amendment privacy does not apply to “your” car in your driveway. (more)

Since they own the car, their police can arrest innocent people standing near it who do not have ID Hiibel v. Nevada.  This demand for ID would otherwise be abhorrent in the United States according to the Supreme Court’s Aptheker case.

Since they own the car, some states have a mandatory 90-day impound of any car driven by someone without a license. Courts don’t get involved unless the ‘owner’ wants to prove that he didn’t know the driver was unlicensed. Otherwise, it will cost you thousands of dollars in impound fees.

There is a lawyer’s contrary opinion about the Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin that can be found at http://home.hiwaay.net/~becraft/MCOs.htm

  •  He quotes Colorado law about other purposes of the MCO, and he quotes federal regulations that show that MCOs can be used for export tariff purposes. Then he jumps to a conclusion that MCO is not a title. And that, somehow, merely suggesting the MCO is proof of government title is a “wild and groundless theory”
  •  If he is correct, then States would accept a notarized copy of the MCO  as proof of ownership, and they would return the manufacturer’s certificate (just the same way that they return your birth certificate). But States must have the original, and they destroy the original after they issue their Certificate of Title.
  •  If he is correct, then States would need judicial authority to impound a car for 90 days without any recourse by the “owner”. How come it is a “wild and groundless theory” to suggest the state owns the car, but a silent presumption if the state implies it?
  •  He also fails to mention the difference between equitable title from legal title.

There is a scheme to tax you for the government granted privilege of using their property.  Although it was not a vehicle case, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in Suttlesworth v. Birmingham 394 U.S. 147 (1969).

Persons faced with an unconstitutional licensing law which purports to require a license as a prerequisite to exercise of right… may ignore the law and engage with impunity in exercise of such right.”

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Moral issues

There is a maxim of law that will be used against you in court:  “The civil laws reduce an ungrateful freeman to slavery” Libertinum ingratum leges civiles in pristinam servitutem redigunt.

The proof of ownership is not just the plate but the sticker.  It is the renewal sticker that will convict you in their courts.  No one would pay a use tax on things you do not actually own the use of. Estopple prevents you from claiming otherwise.

A friend questioned me and said: If you do not own the car then you are profiting from the use of it and the use can always be regulated by the true owner of the vehicle or their representatives.

I agree that the owner (full equitable ownership) is with the government and they can regulate the use. I am not completely convinced that they can regulate it in ways that are not provided by State statute law.  The court cases on driving imply that the ONLY use that they regulate is the use of the roads for profit, not necessarily the use of the car for non-commercial locomotion. See my essay on Driving for much more information.

My friend also said: Generations of foolish people sold themselves and their children into bondage, frittered away real money, elected rulers who promised to take your neighbor’s wealth, forced their neighbors to take care of their parents and educate their children, taught their children to suck the life out of their neighbors for over a century — in one form or another. Slaves don’t have complete freedom of the roads nor can they free themselves unless they at least repent of their covetous practice and sloth. Rights only come with responsibilities.

Instead of admitting their sloth, avarice and covetousness they want to blame the government or lawyers.
The Bible warns that “The slothful shall be under tribute” and “the covetous shall be made merchandise” and “curse their children.”


If you bought a legal title to a vehicle (or title to real estate) that was previously registered, even unknowingly, for commercial use (for example: when it was bought with commercial paper and held as commercial collateral), then the property is held in a public debt trust as collateral for the debt. It is surety for debt. You cannot convert it to your use by defrauding the public trust.  Wealth that is held in trust is what the Bible calls mammon.  In many cases it is unrighteous mammon. Luke 16:9 — Christ told us “make to yourselves friends of the unrighteous mammon”.

If you had known what authority is, you would not have been fooled.  You would have kept your car.  Ordinary people who called themselves “We The People” created a government to secure the blessings of liberty.  People can only delegate an authority that they themselves have.  If “We The People” did not have the right to force their neighbors to put plates on their own wagons/car, then they could not have delegated that authority — an authority that we don’t have — to our civil servants.

Also, if you had known that a right cannot be charged a fee, you would not have been fooled into paying extortion.  You could have kept your car.  Their mafia offers protection from their bullies if you display their sticker as proof that you paid their vigorish.

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Why would it matter if they own our cars?

Why would that bother a law-abiding citizen?

What does this mean?

1. Some people prefer the tranquility of servitude. The walk submissively and don’t care that laws restrict them*. But your government was created to secure the blessings of liberty. The right to travel IS the right to liberty

Liberty defined

This law dictionary definition is a quote from a four-volume law textbook Blackstone’s Commentary on the Laws. It is from a section that discusses the rights of all mankind. The same page in the original textbook explains the fundamentals of why the “rights of all mankind” exist:

because as there is no other known method of compulsion, or of abridging man’s natural free will, but by an infringment or diminution of one or other of these important rights, the preservation of these, inviolate, may justly be said to include the preservation of our civil immunities in their largest and most extensive sense.”

That’s right.  When our original 13 States wrote their constitutions it was a function of government to protect you from all known methods of compulsion.
Just in case you thought “due course of law” means they can pass any law that restrains you, think again. According to the U.S. Supreme Court:

  • government can only detain you “under extreme conditions”
  • Once the right to travel is curtailed, all other rights suffer, …”
  • ” the established doctrine is that this liberty may not be interfered with under the guise of protecting public interest, by legislative action which is arbitrary or without reasonable relation to some purpose within the competency of the state to effect.”
  • More… **

2. They have no authority to own your car, they must rely upon your voluntary surrender of your car’s title. By registering your car, you voluntarily surrendered two inviolate rights that government must otherwise protect. The right to own property, and the right to travel.

3. By tricking you out of your car, government is intruding into prohibited areas.  Government exists to preserve inviolate the rights of all mankind. You no longer have the three rights of all mankind. You are now vulnerable to government methods of compulsion.  Yet government was created to protect inviolate your God-given rights.

4. You cannot get a license without declaring that you are a State resident. A Resident has no Personal liberty. Black’s Law Dictionary, first edition (published in 1891 long after the 14th Amendment) gives this definition of Resident:

RESIDENT: A tenant, who was obliged to reside on his lord’s land, and not depart from the same, a resident may not be entitled to all the privileges or subject to all the duties of an inhabitant. 9 Wend. 11.”

As you can see, A RESIDENT IS SOMEONE WHO HAS NO LIBERTY. You are considered to be a slave on the plantation**.

An earlier definition of resident, in Vattel’s Law of Nations, which is a classic book about international law, in Chapter 19, says that residents are foreign aliens who do not enjoy the rights of citizenship. More…

Now that you have confessed on a permanent irrevocable government document to being a foreign alien that does not enjoy the rights of citizenship, guess what? Your income is now taxable as if you were a foreign alien. More…

6. A legitimate government function (called by various names like “police power”, “compelling state interest”, “overriding governmental interest”, “exigent circumstances”, “clear and present danger doctrine”) that can trump your right to liberty is to protect an innocent person from grave and immediate danger.

Rights are “susceptible to restriction only to prevent grave and immediate danger to interests which the state may lawfully protect” (This phrase was used in many Supreme Court decisions to protect your rights. Carrol v. Princess Anne 393 U.S. 175, Thomas v. Collins 323 U.S. 516, West Virginia v. Barnette 319 U.S. 624, in re Brown 9 Cal.3d 612 West’s Constitutional law, key 84, 90, 91 — etc.)

7. U.S. Supreme Court in Aptheker v. Secretary of State, 378 U.S. 500 (1964): “Free movement by the citizen is of course as dangerous to a tyrant as free expression of ideas or the right of assembly and it is therefore controlled in most countries in the interests of security. … That is why the ticketing of people and the use of identification papers are routine matters under totalitarian regimes, yet abhorrent in the United States.”

* In a first amendment case, the US Supreme Court, Laird v. Tatum, 408 US 1, page 28:

This case involves a cancer in our body politic. It is a measure of the disease which afflicts us. … Those who already walk submissively will say there is no cause for alarm. But submissiveness is not our heritage. The First Amendment was designed to allow rebellion to remain as our heritage. The Constitution was designed to keep the government off the backs of the people. …”

** Every Law Dictionary will tell you that Libertinum ingratum leges civiles in pristinam servitutem redigunt. “The civil laws reduce an ungrateful freedman to his original slavery” Maybe you think this law does not apply to you. Maybe you think that you are not a slave. Think again. Don’t claim to live in a free country if you have never seen freedom. The law only has two categories Omnes hominess aut liberi sunt aut servi. All men are freemen or slaves.

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JAMES MADISON, speech in the Virginia Convention, June 6, 1788:

Since the general civilization of mankind, I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people, by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpations.”

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You may also be interested in

“How To Win In Court” self-help course. Learn the procedures and practices that run American courts.

If you do not defend your rights you will lose them.

You may also be interested in my essays on
Redefinitions of the term License.
Are you an enemy of the State?

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