Salvaged Vehicles in Missouri
Many Missouri residents refer to salvaged vehicles as "totaled" cars or trucks. But, in laymen's terms, a salvaged vehicle is simply one that an insurance company has determined will require repairs that cost more than the vehicle's current value.
A properly assigned Certificate of Title is necessary to prove that you are the legal owner of a particular vehicle. Missouri has a simplified titling process for residents who wished to retain ownership of their salvaged vehicles.
If your vehicle is still in working condition and your auto insurance company has paid a total loss claim, you can obtain a prior salvage title by submitting the following documentation to your nearest Missouri Department of Revenue office:
- An Application for Missouri Title and License (Form DOR-108), marked with the "Prior Salvage" designation
- Payment for your title fee of $11 (includes the $2.50 processing fee).
- The title for the vehicle
- An official safety inspection or ID/OD inspection
- A copy of the Notice of Vehicle Titling Requirements (Form DOR-5043)
Once you've submitted the necessary paperwork, you can check on the status of your application by using the online inquiry service on the DOR's website.
Salvage fraud is a crime that occurs when an unethical motor vehicle dealer purchases a salvaged vehicle, makes a few minor repairs, and sells the car or truck to a customer who is unaware of the vehicle's history.
To minimize the risk of salvage fraud, it's important to be cautious when buying a used motor vehicle. Remember the following tips:
- Run a vehicle history report to find out more about the car's past.
- Have a qualified mechanic of your own choosing inspect the vehicle.
- Test drive the vehicle under a number of different road conditions.
For more tips on buying a used motor vehicle, please see the Missouri Attorney General's All About Autos guide.