The vehicle identification number is optional when requesting new car keys. The VIN helps a locksmith to get dealership lock codes for vehicles made within the past 10 years, but the number is not needed for older automobiles or for vehicles with locks that have been changed.
Each locksmith requires proof of ownership, such as title or registration, and proof of identification, such as a state-issued driver's license or photo ID. The locksmith uses the VIN, model year, make and model to request a key code from a dealership. This key code differs from the transponder code used in fobs and chipped keys.