Verify Before You Buy!


With more and more states using the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) in their titling processes, it is important that our industry customers do as well. Because states may apply brands differently, doing a quick National Title Pointer search can save you heartburn later.

Many dealers have purchased clear title vehicles through salvage auctions, only to find that the salvage auction reported it to NMVTIS (as they are required to by federal law) and because of the report, the DMV will only issue a salvage/salvage rebuilt title.

For example, most recently, Idaho announced that a vehicle that has a brand of salvage in its history, won’t be re-titled in that state. Other jurisdictions are taking similar actions. In some states including Nevada, Ohio, Texas, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, and New Mexico, if a vehicle is found to have a salvage report, they will likely apply brands and possibly issue a salvage title. In some instances, if they see a crush or parts only report in NMVTIS, they won’t issue a title at all. It doesn’t matter what type of title is presented, these states are relying on brands they find in NMVTIS to determine how that vehicle should or should not be titled. The state of New York is using NMVTIS regularly and when they find a New York titled vehicle that has been reported to NMVTIS with a crush report, they cancel the title in the database. The vehicle cannot be titled again. Many other states are looking to do the same to reduce old records in the system.

Businesses that are buying and selling need to be sure to report any salvage vehicles they purchase or sell to NMVTIS within 30 days of the transaction. If a business plans to resell a vehicle as a whole vehicle, they should check NMVTIS before they purchase it to make certain it hasn’t had any salvage reports already made on the vehicle. They should also try to determine if the auction they are buying from will be reporting the vehicle to NMVTIS after the sale because these reports can and will affect the titling outcome. Most of the time, vehicles sold through a salvage auction will be reported to NMVTIS, usually requiring a salvage title to be issued. In many states, the vehicle will need to go through a rebuild process and then will be issued a salvage rebuilt title or a title branded as a rebuilt title.

Don’t get caught with a vehicle you can’t do anything with. Protect your business by checking its title history. Just go to your DMV123 tab, select National Title Pointer, and in seconds, you can have the background you need to make an informed decision.