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Selling Car that was Declared a Total Loss

spyderdsm 33 March 16, 2013 at 05:03 PM
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Im selling my car that was declared a total loss by the insurance company back in 2006. I had it repaired and its been running fine since. Im in NY and the person who is buying it knows it was in a accident in 2006. Car fax shows "TOTAL LOSS VEHICLE Vehicle declared a total loss by an insurance company Collision damage reported" but I have a clean title. Im selling it to a private party and want to know if they will have a hard time registering the car and getting a title in their name.

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#2
you had the car fixed and got a clear title vs a salvage one you should be fine make sure you tell the buyer the car was totaled and fixed I would inlclude it in the bill of sale
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#3
Quote from komondor View Post :
you had the car fixed and got a clear title vs a salvage one you should be fine make sure you tell the buyer the car was totaled and fixed I would inlclude it in the bill of sale
I already had the title, since I bought the car in 2005 and then the car was declared a total loss in 2006 by the insurance company. The insurance company cut me a check and I fixed the car since I got to keep it. The insurance company reported the car "a total loss" to the DMV while I still had the same title I got in 2005.
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#4
ah so that is the problem you will have it actually has a salvage title you technically (states may differ) turned the car over to the insurance company and then purchased it back when you purchased it back it should have had a salvage title. You will need to see how your states handles stuff a friend of mine in Colorado did just that and then when his car was stolen again was told we paid you the value of the truck before we are not going to do it again as he did not do the paperwork to show the truck was fully repaired.
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#5
the back of my title has a damage disclosure statement asking if the vehicle had been declared a "wreck". And if it has, then the vehicle must have a dmv examination before being registered and new the title given will be a Salvage title.

I looked up at NYS DMV laws and it seems like I don't have to fill this out since my car is over 8 model years old(I have a 2002 Altima). Here is what it states about odometer and damage disclosure:

For motor vehicles that are 10 model years old or newer, the seller must complete the odometer disclosure statement on the back of the title certificate. For vehicles older than 10 model years, odometer disclosure is not required.

For motor vehicles that are eight model years old or newer, the seller must complete the damage disclosure statement on the back of the title certificate. For vehicles older than eight model years, the damage disclosure is not required.

http://www.dmv.ny.gov/broch/c18.htm
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#6
If the current vehicle was salvaged, and your current updated title at the DMV shows salvaged, the new owner will have trouble getting insurance. I would first figure out the title status, and then ask the buyer if he or she is able to get insurance on the vehicle.
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#7
Quote from needpricedeals2 View Post :
If the current vehicle was salvaged, and your current updated title at the DMV shows salvaged, the new owner will have trouble getting insurance. I would first figure out the title status, and then ask the buyer if he or she is able to get insurance on the vehicle.
my title is clean. its the original title I got when I bought the car in 2005
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#8
Quote from spyderdsm View Post :
my title is clean. its the original title I got when I bought the car in 2005
What they're saying is that if you went in to get an updated title it would probably be a salvage title... So while your old one isn't a salvage title, that doesn't mean you have an accurate title.

Thats just my attempt to recap. I don't know how titles work.
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#9
Quote from spyderdsm View Post :
my title is clean. its the original title I got when I bought the car in 2005
Your printed copy of the title is clean - but the actual title record with the NYS DMV is a salvage title.

It is the same thing as having a bank statement from 2005 that says you have $1,000,000 in your account even if you only have $5 now. You can write a check on that account for a million, but it isn't going to clear.

When you sell the vehicle, it would be fraud to not disclose the recorded condition and reality of the vehicle. Disclose it on the title and be sure it is mentioned on the bill of sale. If you don't, make sure your attorney is up to speed when the buyer comes knocking.
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#10
Quote from Formless View Post :
Your printed copy of the title is clean - but the actual title record with the NYS DMV is a salvage title.

It is the same thing as having a bank statement from 2005 that says you have $1,000,000 in your account even if you only have $5 now. You can write a check on that account for a million, but it isn't going to clear.

When you sell the vehicle, it would be fraud to not disclose the recorded condition and reality of the vehicle. Disclose it on the title and be sure it is mentioned on the bill of sale. If you don't, make sure your attorney is up to speed when the buyer comes knocking.
Agreed. Your old title is exactly that - old and out of date. It is no longer valid since your insurance stated it was a total loss. You will probably have a salvage title - which dramatically lowers the value of the car. When you sell the vehicle, you need to use the updated (and correct) title. The buyer understands there was an accident. Do they know the car was written off as a total loss and it has a salvage title? If not, you need to inform them asap.

Quote from spyderdsm View Post :
my title is clean. its the original title I got when I bought the car in 2005
This may help - rules on salvage titles in NY

http://www.dmv.ny.gov/salvage.htm
Last edited by StarNova March 17, 2013 at 06:16 AM
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#11
Quote from StarNova View Post :
Agreed. Your old title is exactly that - old and out of date. It is no longer valid since your insurance stated it was a total loss. You will probably have a salvage title - which dramatically lowers the value of the car. When you sell the vehicle, you need to use the updated (and correct) title. The buyer understands there was an accident. Do they know the car was written off as a total loss and it has a salvage title? If not, you need to inform them asap.



This may help - rules on salvage titles in NY

http://www.dmv.ny.gov/salvage.htm
thanks for the reply...my car is a 2002 Altima and according to DMV:

DMV Commissioner's Regulations require the DMV to mark or "brand" a title certificate if:

a vehicle is eight model years old or newer, and
the owner indicated that the vehicle was destroyed or received damage of 75% or more of the retail value of the vehicle at the time the damage occurred.
The owner must mark the box next to the statement on the back of the title certificate to certify the damage.

since my car is over 10 years old, doesn't this mean it wouldn't get a salvage title?..The buyers knows the cars history...
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#12
Quote from spyderdsm View Post :
thanks for the reply...my car is a 2002 Altima and according to DMV:

DMV Commissioner's Regulations require the DMV to mark or "brand" a title certificate if:

a vehicle is eight model years old or newer, and
the owner indicated that the vehicle was destroyed or received damage of 75% or more of the retail value of the vehicle at the time the damage occurred.
The owner must mark the box next to the statement on the back of the title certificate to certify the damage.

since my car is over 10 years old, doesn't this mean it wouldn't get a salvage title?..The buyers knows the cars history...

Did the accident happen since it was over ten years old?

If not, then it likely already has a salvage title, you just aren't holding the most recent version.
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#13
Quote from Formless View Post :
Did the accident happen since it was over ten years old?

If not, then it likely already has a salvage title, you just aren't holding the most recent version.
From what I understand from the NYS DMV...
to get a salvage title, I have to declare that the car was in a "wreck" and a DMV inspector must car to make sure no stolen parts were used to rebuild car. Then they would send me an updated title that says salvage/rebuild. Its not like I can request a new title from the state and it will say salvage title on it.
I just want to know since the car is over 10 years old, would this step be bypassed by the DMV since I don't have have to disclose damage to DMV( of course I would disclose it to the new owner)
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#14
Quote from spyderdsm View Post :
Its not like I can request a new title from the state and it will say salvage title on it.
The insurance company has already communicated with the DMV.

If some how our NYS system isn't already aware that the vehicle should have a salvage title and you don't have a copy, then go for it.

I would be under the impression that the insurance company paid out on a total loss. They then technically own the vehicle (which issues a new title). They then sell it back to you at a lower price to minimize their claim loss (again, generating a new title). Both them buying and selling it back was likely one transaction where they paid your claim out. If your title pre-dates the accident, I would say that it is an outdated piece of paperwork. If it is the title from after you bought it back and it was still clean - then we're talking about an entirely different situation.

I would wonder where CARFAX is getting the information. Is it from the state? If so, that confirms the assumptions here.

I don't think anyone here is going to provide legal input that directly contradicts what you found online. You could seek legal services or contact the DMV directly to be absolutely sure.
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#15
Quote from Formless View Post :
The insurance company has already communicated with the DMV.

If some how our NYS system isn't already aware that the vehicle should have a salvage title and you don't have a copy, then go for it.

I would be under the impression that the insurance company paid out on a total loss. They then technically own the vehicle (which issues a new title). They then sell it back to you at a lower price to minimize their claim loss (again, generating a new title). Both them buying and selling it back was likely one transaction where they paid your claim out. If your title pre-dates the accident, I would say that it is an outdated piece of paperwork. If it is the title from after you bought it back and it was still clean - then we're talking about an entirely different situation.

I would wonder where CARFAX is getting the information. Is it from the state? If so, that confirms the assumptions here.

I don't think anyone here is going to provide legal input that directly contradicts what you found online. You could seek legal services or contact the DMV directly to be absolutely sure.
thanks for the reply.
The title I have is dated prior to the accident. The insurance company was geico. Both me and the other party had the same insurance company. I only had liability at the time of the accident and they declared the accident 50/50. They declared the car a total loss and only gave me 50% of the value of the car for property damage. They said I can do whatever I want with the car so I repaired it.
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