Lost Title Bonds
Suppose you bought a car from a private seller, an individual you don’t know very well, and were given a receipt or bill of sales, but no title. How do you register the vehicle without a title? The short answer is: you buy a lost title bond. Learn more about these bonds, and request a quote from Surety Bond Professionals today.
What Is It?
A lost title bond will enable you to get a bonded title from your state’s motor vehicle department, which will allow you to register the vehicle. The bond is your guarantee that anyone who later shows up and claims a valid, verifiable ownership interest in the vehicle will not suffer a financial loss because you have purchased the vehicle and registered it in your own name.
Who Needs It?
In the majority of states, anyone who has purchased a vehicle and does not have a valid title for it will need to obtain a lost title bond in order to insure the vehicle, register it in their own name, or sell it. This applies in cases where:
- The purchaser received no title
- The purchaser received a title that was lost or stolen before the vehicle could be registered
- The purchaser received a defective title (one that lacks the information required for transferring ownership or that has been damaged or altered in a way that invalidates it)
The bond will enable you to get a bonded title from your local DMV office. If you live in a state that does not allow for bonded titles, you’ll need to contact your DMV for guidance.
Note that a lost title bond cannot be obtained for abandoned vehicles—only for vehicles that change hands through a sale or as a gift.
How Does It Work?
A bonded title, also known as a certificate of title surety, looks like any other vehicle title except for being branded as “BONDED.” In many states, a bonded title must remain in place without challenge for three years before it can be converted into a regular, non-bonded title. During those years, a bonded title is considered to be provisional and can be disputed by anyone with proof of ownership.
If someone can prove a legitimate ownership interest in the vehicle, they can file a claim against your lost title bond and receive compensation up to the full amount of the bond. The surety company that issued the bond will investigate and ask you to settle the claim if it is found to be valid.
If you don’t pay the claim in a timely manner, the surety company will pay it for you and then collect reimbursement from you, including any legal costs involved. In addition to paying the claim, you might also be required to return the vehicle to its rightful owner.
What Does It Cost?
The required amount of a lost title bond varies by state and depends on the value of the vehicle. For relatively inexpensive vehicles, many surety companies will quote a flat rate, often between $100 and $250 for the bond. For more expensive vehicles, surety companies usually charge applicants with good credit an annual premium between 1% and 3% of the total required bond amount.
Request A Quote
Call Surety Bond Professionals today for help getting the bond you need to obtain a bonded title that will let you insure, register, or sell your vehicle.