LTO Warns Public vs. “Non-Appearance” Schemes for Motor Vehicle Registration and Renewal

The Land Transportation Office (LTO) again warned the public against the proliferation of scams that offer “non-appearance” services for motor vehicle registration and renewal.

The Agency noted that transactions for these “services” happen both on-ground and online. On-ground transactions happen allegedly within the perimeter of smoke emission testing centers, while those online occur mostly on popular social media platforms.

The LTO has repeatedly warned the public that patronizing these scams opens them to possible fraud where they can lose their money, and may put them in harm’s way, too, since there can also be legal repercussions, according to LTO Chief Assistant Secretary Jayart Tugade.

“Time and again, the LTO continues to remind clients not to patronize these spurious characters who offer their illegal services in exchange for a fee to be able to circumvent the process. We wish to reiterate that the motor vehicle registration process was put into place to protect clients and their hard-earned money, and to guarantee the safety and roadworthiness of their vehicle,” he added.

The public is reminded that offering “non-appearance” services for motor vehicle registration or renewal is a violation of several laws. These laws are Article 315 of the Revised Penal Code or the crime of estafa or swindling, and Republic Act 11032 or the “Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018.”

These “non-appearance” scams involve the motor vehicle registrant not having to appear anymore during the motor vehicle registration phase, while some offer clients the opportunity of non-appearance even as early as the smoke emission testing stage of the process. Of course, all of these services come at a hefty price.

Likewise, LTO Chief Tugade issued a stern warning to LTO employees who may be in cahoots with these criminals, reiterating the need to put an end to this nefarious scheme that is depriving the country of much-needed revenues to fill the nation’s coffers.

“If putting an end to this corrupt practice means removing LTO personnel from government service, then so be it. Again, I’d like to remind LTO personnel that I have zero tolerance on corruption. We will weed them out of the Agency if they put the LTO’s name in a bad light,” he added.

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