hastings 050124SPRINGFIELD – Vehicle owners may soon have another defense in the uptick in theft of catalytic convertors in Illinois.

“Replacing catalytic converters is an unnecessary cost and time consuming burden for vehicle owners,” said Hastings (D-Frankfort). “This measure will provide drivers with a tool to stop the stripping of catalytic converters and hold recyclable metal dealers accountable to stop the illegal sale of these parts.”

Hastings’ measure, House Bill 4589, would require recyclable metal dealers to keep records of the vehicle identification number of the vehicle from which the catalytic converter was removed and any numbers, bar codes, stickers, or other unique markings of the catalytic convertor.

It also would require them to obtain and retain a copy of the certificate of title or uniform invoice showing the seller's ownership of the vehicle in transactions involving catalytic convertors.

A catalytic converter is an essential part of a vehicle's exhaust system. It helps lower the number of pollutants released into the air by converting hazardous combustion gases into less harmful substances. A replacement can cost from $1,000 to $3,500, according to AAA.

A report released in 2023 from the National Insurance Crime Bureau, ranked Illinois fourth in the nation with 2,021 catalytic converter theft claims from 2020-2022. Nationally, insurance claims for these thefts increased from 16,660 claims in 2020 to 64,701 in 2022.

“Our hope is this new measure will discourage those engaging in this illegal activity by instituting safeguards,” said Hastings.

House Bill 4589 passed the Senate’s Judiciary Committee with bipartisan support and heads to the full Senate for consideration.