Lost Title Bonds

At Surety Bond Agents, we offer a full range of surety bonds nationwide through an extended carrier network. Learn everything you need to know about lost title bonds below, and contact us today to request a quote.

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FREE LOST TITLE BOND QUOTE

What Are Lost Title Bonds?

Lost title bonds provide a solution for people who want to register, sell, or donate a vehicle for which they have no valid title. All but a very few states have a process through which a person in this situation can obtain a bonded title that will allow them to register or transfer ownership of the vehicle despite the lack of an original title.  The prerequisite for obtaining a bonded title is to purchase a lost title surety bond (referred to in some states simply as a title bond).

Who Needs Them?

There are several scenarios in which a person might need to purchase a title bond and obtain a bonded license:

  • The buyer did not receive a title from the seller, though there might be a bill of sale, receipt, or canceled check.
  • The buyer does have a title, but it is invalid—for example, because of fraud, alteration, or because the name of the new owner was recorded incorrectly.
  • The seller provided a title, but it was lost or stolen before the buyer was able to get the vehicle registered.

In addition to the scenarios above it is possible in some states to get a bonded title for a vehicle abandoned on one’s property.

How Do They Work?

The specific steps to get a bonded title vary by state. In most states, however, the vehicle’s purported owner must purchase a lost title surety bond. The amount of the bond is based on the value of the vehicle. The required term (duration) of the bond varies but is typically three or four years. 

At any point during the bond’s term, someone could show up with evidence of their legitimate ownership of the vehicle. If that person is proven to be the rightful owner, they can file a claim against the lost title bond and be compensated for any financial loss incurred as a result of a bonded title having been issued.

If that should occur, both the state (the “obligee” in the surety bond agreement) and the surety bond company (referred to simply as the “surety”) are held harmless. Full legal responsibility for paying the claim rests with the bonded individual (the “principal”). However, the surety will pay the claim in advance—essentially lending that amount to the principal—to be reimbursed by the principal.

At the end of the bond’s three or four-year term, if nobody has surfaced to dispute the vehicle’s ownership, the bond expires and the bonded title is exchanged for a regular, unbonded title.

What Do They Cost?

In most states that permit bonded titles, the cost of a lost title bond for less expensive vehicles ($6,000 or less) is typically a flat amount that rarely exceeds $300 or $350. More expensive vehicles require underwriting because the risk that the principal won’t repay the surety’s advance is higher. 

The underwriters will rely primarily on the principal’s personal credit score in arriving at an appropriate premium rate. With good credit, the premium rate should be somewhere in the range of 1-3% of the total bond amount.

At Surety Bond Agents, we offer a full range of surety bonds nationwide through an extended carrier network. Learn everything you need to know about lost title bonds below, and contact us today to request a quote.

CONTACT US FOR A

FREE LOST TITLE BOND QUOTE

What Are Lost Title Bonds?

Lost title bonds provide a solution for people who want to register, sell, or donate a vehicle for which they have no valid title. All but a very few states have a process through which a person in this situation can obtain a bonded title that will allow them to register or transfer ownership of the vehicle despite the lack of an original title. 

The prerequisite for obtaining a bonded title is to purchase a lost title surety bond (referred to in some states simply as a title bond).

There are several scenarios in which a person might need to purchase a title bond and obtain a bonded license:

  • The buyer did not receive a title from the seller, though there might be a bill of sale, receipt, or canceled check.
  • The buyer does have a title, but it is invalid—for example, because of fraud, alteration, or because the name of the new owner was recorded incorrectly.
  • The seller provided a title, but it was lost or stolen before the buyer was able to get the vehicle registered.

In addition to the scenarios above it is possible in some states to get a bonded title for a vehicle abandoned on one’s property.

The specific steps to get a bonded title vary by state. In most states, however, the vehicle’s purported owner must purchase a lost title surety bond. The amount of the bond is based on the value of the vehicle. The required term (duration) of the bond varies but is typically three or four years. 

At any point during the bond’s term, someone could show up with evidence of their legitimate ownership of the vehicle. If that person is proven to be the rightful owner, they can file a claim against the lost title bond and be compensated for any financial loss incurred as a result of a bonded title having been issued.

If that should occur, both the state (the “obligee” in the surety bond agreement) and the surety bond company (referred to simply as the “surety”) are held harmless. Full legal responsibility for paying the claim rests with the bonded individual (the “principal”). However, the surety will pay the claim in advance—essentially lending that amount to the principal—to be reimbursed by the principal.

At the end of the bond’s three or four-year term, if nobody has surfaced to dispute the vehicle’s ownership, the bond expires and the bonded title is exchanged for a regular, unbonded title.

In most states that permit bonded titles, the cost of a lost title bond for less expensive vehicles ($6,000 or less) is typically a flat amount that rarely exceeds $300 or $350. More expensive vehicles require underwriting because the risk that the principal won’t repay the surety’s advance is higher. 

The underwriters will rely primarily on the principal’s personal credit score in arriving at an appropriate premium rate. With good credit, the premium rate should be somewhere in the range of 1-3% of the total bond amount.

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