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Minnesota State Title Processing Procedures

  1. What form of title must an insurer obtain in connection with the sale of a vehicle that has been acquired through the settlement of a claim?
  2. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title (aka “Clean Title”)?
  3. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title stamped “Salvage Must Be Inspected” (aka “Salvage Title”)?
  4. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title stamped “High Value Salvage Vehicle” and “Salvage Must be Inspected” (aka “Salvage Title”)?
  5. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title stamped “FLOOD DAMAGED” (aka “Salvage Title”)?
  6. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle for parts only on a Bill of Sale?
  7. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a recovered theft vehicle recovered substantially intact with no substantial damage, where title is still in the name of the insured?
  8. What steps must an insurer take in Minnesota to process an owner-retained vehicle?
  9. What legal duties are imposed upon a lienholder following satisfaction of the lien?


  1. What form of title must an insurer obtain in connection with the sale of a vehicle that has been acquired through the settlement of a claim?

    Pursuant to Minnesota Statutes §§ 168A.151(1):

      (a) When an insurer, licensed to conduct business in Minnesota, acquires ownership of a late model or high value vehicle through payment of damages, the insurer shall immediately apply for a salvage certificate of title or shall stamp the existing certificate of title with the legend "SALVAGE CERTIFICATE OF TITLE" in a manner prescribed by the department. Within 48 hours of taking possession of a vehicle through payment of damages, an insurer must notify the department in a manner prescribed by the department.


    The following definitions, found at Minnesota Statutes §§ 168A.01, apply to § 168A.151 above:

      Subd. 6a. High value vehicle. "High value vehicle" means a vehicle manufactured six or more years before the start of the current model year that had an actual cash value in excess of $5,000 before being damaged, or a vehicle with a manufacturer's rating of over 26,000 pounds gross vehicle weight.

      Subd. 8a. Late model vehicle. "Late model vehicle" means a vehicle manufactured in the current model year or the five model years immediately preceding the current model year.

      Subd. 12a. Older model vehicle. "Older model vehicle" means a vehicle manufactured in the sixth model year immediately preceding the current model year or earlier that is not a high value vehicle.

      Subd. 17a. Salvage title. "Salvage title" means a certificate of title that is issued to a vehicle declared a repairable total loss vehicle under section 168A.151 and includes an existing certificate of title that has been stamped with the legend "salvage certificate of title" in accordance with section 168A.151.

      Subd. 17b. Salvage vehicle. "Salvage vehicle" means a vehicle that has a salvage certificate of title.


    Pursuant to Minnesota Statutes § 325F.6642, Title Branding is as follows:

      Subdivision 1. Flood damage. If the application for title and registration indicates that the vehicle has been classified as a total loss vehicle because of water or flood damage, the registrar of motor vehicles shall record the term "flood damaged" on the certificate of title and all subsequent certificates of title issued for that vehicle.

      Subd. 2. Total loss vehicles. Upon transfer and application for title to all total loss vehicles, the registrar of motor vehicles shall record the term "prior salvage" on the first Minnesota certificate of title and all subsequent Minnesota certificates of title used for that vehicle.

      Subd. 3. Out-of-state vehicles.

        (a) Upon transfer and application for title of all repaired vehicles with out-of-state titles that bear the term "damaged," "salvage," "rebuilt," "reconditioned," or any similar term, the registrar of motor vehicles shall record the term "prior salvage" on the first Minnesota certificate of title and all subsequent Minnesota certificates of title used for that vehicle.

        (b) The registrar shall mark "prior salvage" on the first Minnesota certificate of title and all subsequent certificates of title issued for any vehicle which came into the state unrepaired and for which a salvage certificate of title was issued.

        (c) For vehicles with out-of-state titles which bear the term "flood damaged," the registrar of motor vehicles shall record the term "flood damaged" on the first Minnesota certificate of title and all subsequent Minnesota certificates of title issued for that vehicle.

        (d) The registrar shall mark "prior salvage" on the first Minnesota certificate of title and all subsequent certificates of title issued for any vehicle that had a salvage certificate of title issued at any time in the vehicle's history by any other jurisdiction.

      Subd. 4. Reconstructed vehicles. For vehicles that are reconstructed within the meaning of section 168A.15, the registrar shall record the term "reconstructed" on the certificate of title and all subsequent certificates of title.

      Subd. 5. Manner of branding. The designation of "flood damaged," "rebuilt," "prior salvage," or "reconstructed" on a certificate of title shall be made by the registrar of motor vehicles in a clear and conspicuous manner, in a color different from all other writing on the certificate of title.

      Subd. 6. Total loss vehicle; definition. For the purposes of this section, "total loss vehicle" means a vehicle damaged by collision or other occurrence, for which a salvage certificate of title has been issued. Total loss vehicle does not include a stolen and recovered vehicle verified by the insurer who declared the vehicle to be a total loss vehicle unless there is more than minimal damage to the vehicle as determined by the registrar.

      Subd. 7 and 8. [omitted] back to top
  2. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title (aka “Clean Title”)?

    The insurer shall provide Copart with a Title or a comparable ownership document issued by another state or jurisdiction (endorsed over to the insurer by insured) with the odometer disclosure statement completed (or on a separate form if not included in an out-of-state Title), and a release of any liens.

    Copart, acting under a power of attorney for the insurer, will then sell the vehicle at auction and reassign the insurer’s Certificate of Title to the purchaser. back to top

  3. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title stamped “Salvage Must Be Inspected” (aka “Salvage Title”)?

    The insurer shall provide Copart with a Certificate of Title or a comparable ownership document issued by another state or jurisdiction (endorsed over to the insurer by insured) with the odometer disclosure statement completed (or on a separate form if not included in an out-of-state Title), a release of any liens, an ACV, and a cost of repair estimate.

    If the insurer requests that the Certificate of Title be issued in the name of the insurer, Copart will send the above documents along with a Form PS2000 – “Application to Title/Reg. a Vehicle” and the appropriate fee to the Registry of Motor Vehicles for processing, and the Registry of Motor Vehicles shall return a Certificate of Title in the name of the insurer with “SALVAGE MUST BE INSPECTED” stamped on it.

    Otherwise, Copart shall stamp the original Certificate of Title with “SALVAGE MUST BE INSPECTED”.

    Copart, acting under a power of attorney for the insurer, will then sell the vehicle at auction and reassign the insurer’s Salvage Title to the purchaser. [See Minnesota Statutes § 168A.151] back to top

  4. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title stamped “High Value Salvage Vehicle” and “Salvage Must be Inspected” (aka “Salvage Title”)?

    The insurer shall provide Copart with a Certificate of Title or a comparable ownership document issued by another state or jurisdiction (endorsed over to the insurer by insured) stamped “HIGH VALUE SALVAGE VEHICLE” with the odometer disclosure statement completed (or on a separate form if not included in an out-of-state Title), a release of any liens, an ACV, and a cost of repair estimate.

    If the insurer requests that the Certificate of Title be issued in the name of the insurer, Copart will send the above documents along with a Form PS2000 – “Application to Title/Reg. a Vehicle” and the appropriate fee to the Registry of Motor Vehicles for processing, and the Registry of Motor Vehicles shall return a Certificate of Title in the name of the insurer with “SALVAGE MUST BE INSPECTED” and “HIGH VALUE SALVAGE VEHICLE” stamped on it.

    Otherwise, Copart shall stamp “SALVAGE MUST BE INSPECTED” on the original Certificate of Title.

    Copart, acting under a power of attorney for the insurer, will then sell the vehicle at auction and reassign the insurer’s Salvage Title to the purchaser. [See Minnesota Statutes § 168A.151] back to top

  5. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle on a Certificate of Title stamped “FLOOD DAMAGED” (aka “Salvage Title”)?

    The insurer shall provide Copart with a Certificate of Title or a comparable ownership document issued by another state or jurisdiction (endorsed over to the insurer by insured) with the odometer disclosure statement completed (or on a separate form if not included in an out-of-state Title), a release of any liens, an ACV, and a cost of repair estimate.

    If the insurer requests that the Certificate of Title be issued in the name of the insurer, Copart will send the above documents along with a Form PS2000 – “Application to Title/Reg. a Vehicle” and the appropriate fee to the Registry of Motor Vehicles for processing, and the Registry of Motor Vehicles shall return a Certificate of Title in the name of the insurer with “FLOOD DAMAGED” stamped on it.

    Otherwise, Copart shall stamp “FLOOD DAMAGED” on the original Certificate of Title.

    Copart, acting under a power of attorney for the insurer, will then sell the vehicle at auction and reassign the insurer’s Salvage Title to the purchaser. [See Minnesota Statutes §§ 168A.151, 325F.6642] back to top

  6. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a vehicle for parts only on a Bill of Sale?

    The insurer shall provide Copart with a Certificate of Title or a comparable ownership document issued by another state or jurisdiction (endorsed over to the insurer by insured) with the odometer disclosure statement completed (or on a separate form if not included in an out-of-state Title), a release of any liens, an ACV, and a letter requesting that the vehicle be sold for parts only.

    Copart shall stamp JUNK on the Certificate of Title and forward it along with the above documents to the Registry of Motor Vehicles for cancellation. The Registry of Motor Vehicles shall not issue another title on this vehicle.

    Copart, acting under a power of attorney for the insurer, will then sell the vehicle at auction and provide the purchaser with a Bill of Sale. [See Minnesota Statutes §§ 168A.01, 168A.151] back to top

  7. What documents must an insurer provide to Copart in order to sell a recovered theft vehicle recovered substantially intact with no substantial damage, where title is still in the name of the insured?

    When a vehicle has been stolen, the insurer shall provide Copart with a Certificate of Title or a comparable ownership document issued by another state or jurisdiction (endorsed over to the insurer by insured) with the odometer disclosure statement completed with last known mileage (or on a separate form if not included in an out-of-state Title), and a release of any liens.

    The above documents, a Form PS2000 – “Application to Title/Reg. a Vehicle”, and the appropriate fee will be sent to the Registry of Motor Vehicles for processing. Thereafter, the Registry of Motor Vehicles shall return a Certificate of Title in the name of the insurer with “SALVAGE MUST BE INSPECTED” stamped on it. Upon receipt, Copart will forward the Salvage Title to the insurer for safekeeping.

    If the vehicle is recovered, the insurer will return the Salvage Title along with an ACV and a cost of repair to Copart in order to obtain the appropriate title.

    Pursuant to Minnesota Statues §§ 325F.6642, Subdivision 6, a total loss vehicle does not include a stolen and recovered vehicle verified by the insurer who declared the vehicle to be a total loss vehicle unless there is more than minimal damage to the vehicle as determined by the registrar. If the vehicle only has minimal damage, it can be sold on a Certificate of Title (for procedure, see question/answer no. 2). However, if the vehicle has more than minimal damage, the vehicle must be sold on an applicable Salvage Title (for procedure, see questions no. 3, 4, or 5), and if the vehicle is an unrepairable total loss vehicle, the vehicle must be sold for parts only on a Bill of Sale (for procedure, see question/answer no. 6).

    After Copart has acquired the appropriate title, Copart, acting upon a power of attorney for the insurer, will then sell the vehicle at auction and reassign the insurer’s appropriate Title to the purchaser, or sell it on a Bill of Sale, if appropriate. back to top

  8. What steps must an insurer take in Minnesota to process an ownerretained vehicle?

    Title must be submitted to the Registery of Motor Vehicles along with an original, signed letter on insurance company letterhead stating that this vehicle is an owner retain total loss and the title needs to be issued as salvage to the insured. back to top

  9. What legal duties are imposed upon a lienholder following satisfaction of the lien?

    Pursuant to see Minnesota Statutes § 168A.20:

      Upon the satisfaction of a security interest in a vehicle for which the certificate of title is in the possession of the secured party, the secured party shall within 15 days execute a release of security interest in the space provided therefor on the certificate or as the department prescribes, and mail or deliver the certificate and release to the next secured party named therein, or if none, to the owner or any person who delivers to the secured party an authorization from the owner to receive the certificate. The owner shall promptly cause the certificate and release, together with the required fees and taxes, to be mailed or delivered to the department, which shall release the secured party's rights on the certificate or issue a new certificate.

      For titles issued to the secured party before July 1, 1990, the secured party shall hold the certificate of title until the security interest is satisfied.

      Upon the satisfaction of a security interest in a vehicle for which the certificate of title is in the possession of a prior secured party, the secured party whose security interest is satisfied shall within 15 days execute a release in the form the department prescribes and deliver the release to the owner or any person who delivers to the secured party an authorization from the owner to receive it. The secured party in possession of the certificate of title shall either deliver the certificate to the owner, or the person authorized by the owner, for delivery to the department, or upon receipt of the release, mail or deliver it with the certificate to the department, which shall release the subordinate secured party's rights on the certificate or issue a new certificate.

      Upon the satisfaction of a security interest in a vehicle for which the certificate of title is in the possession of the owner, the secured party shall within 15 days execute a release of security interest on the form prescribed by the department and mail or deliver the notification with release to the owner or any person who delivers to the secured party an authorization from the owner to receive the release. back to top
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