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The Top 2 Car Title Recovery Methods Preferred by DMVs

When getting a title for a vehicle without the old title, there are only two approaches that the DMV prefers. A vehicle title is a legal government document and cannot be purchased or downloaded. It must be obtained from the government, and they only issue a new title if you have the old one. 

Certain methods that people use to obtain titles can lead to legal trouble. For example, Boyd Coddington, a well-known auto rebuilder, faced charges for fraudulent registration of replicated vehicles. They were switching VIN numbers, which is illegal and unethical.

It’s important to understand that these actions are felonies, as they involve misrepresenting vehicle values, evading taxes, and violating regulations. These issues are not limited to California; they can cause problems nationwide.

When obtaining a title, it’s crucial to be aware of the method used and understand its implications. Be cautious of individuals or companies offering titles without disclosing their process. Lack of transparency can lead to trouble, including revoked titles.

One example of a problematic company is Broadway Title, which operated in the past. There were concerns about their methods, and some individuals had to return their plates and titles due to the company’s illegal practices.

It’s crucial to note that titles are done in your name, and you are responsible for the method used. That’s why it’s important to choose a method you understand and are comfortable with.

The recommended approaches are bonded titles and court order titles. Most states offer bonded titles, which involve purchasing a bond and providing an explanation for not having the proper paperwork. As long as the vehicle is legitimate and free from liens or claims, you can obtain a title through this process.

Court order titles are an alternative in states without bonded titles or in specific cases. Each state may have slightly different procedures, but they generally involve visiting a clerk, requesting information from the DMV, sending a certified letter, getting an inspection, and filing a petition. Court appearances are usually not required unless specified.

It’s worth noting that the court order process involves fewer steps compared to some alternative methods, like the Vermont loophole. This loophole entails obtaining a Vermont registration and then transferring it to your state. However, it can be complicated, with risks such as rejection by your state and substantial sales tax charges based on the highest book value.

Another method some people attempt is filing for a mechanics lien, but this can lead to legal complications. Authorities are cracking down on mechanics’ liens due to fraudulent practices, and several title companies have faced prosecution. Mechanics’ liens should only be used by repair shops to recover unpaid bills.

It’s important to weigh the risks and rewards of alternative methods. Bonded titles and court order titles are the official, recommended, and required approaches. Choosing any other method can result in more difficulties, higher costs, rejection, or failure.

We have over 20 years of experience in the car title industry and advise against purchasing titles directly from companies. Instead, take control of the process and choose a method you understand. Car titles are legal documents that should be treated seriously. It’s okay to pay for assistance, but no one other than you should be signing any documents for your vehicle title.

Opting for a bonded or court order title may seem daunting at first, but it offers greater security and peace of mind. Avoiding unnecessary risks and potential title revocations from the DMV is crucial. If you have any questions, visit our website,, where you can consult with a title agent who can provide further guidance on the processes and help you make informed decisions.

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