How do I obtain a salvage title in Tennessee? Tennessee

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If, due to accident or some freakish force of nature, your vehicle incurs extensive damage to the extent it must be rebuilt in order to operate, you will have to first apply for a salvage title, or what the DOR refers to as a salvage certificate. This only applies to vehicles 10 years old or newer.

Bear in mind that once your insurance company has declared your vehicle a total loss, the vehicle registration and title are immediately voided.

Apply for TN Salvage Certificate

To apply for a salvage certificate, you'll need to submit to your County Clerk:

After processing, you'll be mailed a salvage certificate. Keep in mind that a vehicle with a salvage certificate cannot be driven.

Apply for Title With Rebuilt Auto

When your rebuilt auto is ready for the road, you'll need to apply for a new title. This requires submitting the following:

  • A completed Application for Motor Vehicle Identification Certification.
  • Color photographs of each quadrant (rear, front, driver side, passenger side) showing the vehicle before repairs.
  • A receipt or bill of sale for all component parts used in the rebuilding. The application lists every part requiring proof. Receipts must include the seller's name and address, as well as the car's year, make, and VIN from which the parts were taken from.
  • A notarized affidavit if you hired someone to handle the rebuilding. The affidavit must include the rebuilder's name and mailing address.
  • Your assigned salvage certificate.
  • Payment for the applicable fee. The fee for conversion titles is $75.
Mail documents, photos and payment to:

Tennessee Department of Revenue
Special Investigations Section
Anti-Theft Unit
44 Vantage Way, Suite 160
Nashville, Tennessee 37243-8050

Or, if you prefer, submit in person to your local County Clerk.

If your application clears, you'll be given the green light, as it were, to register and title your rebuilt auto.

Used Cars and the Importance of Ordering a Vehicle History Report (VHR)

When shopping for a used car, protect yourself by ordering a VHR. With it you can check the car's entire vehicle history, including number of owners, emissions test results, service records, and much more.

Even if you’re the seller you should order a VHR. It will help establish a fair price, reducing haggling, and immediately instill trust with prospective buyers.

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