Legally Drive a Salvage Title Vehicle in California 2021

Auto insurance laws vary throughout the United States. Salvage title vehicles are notoriously difficult to insure for a number of different reasons. Trying to find auto insurance coverage for a salvage title in the state of California can be especially difficult. But it is still possible to get insurance if you know where to look and what type of coverage you are most likely to get.

What is considered a salvage title vehicle in California?

A major car accident, natural disaster, floods, vandalism and more can put your vehicle in danger of having its title labeled salvage in the state of California.

A salvage title vehicle will most likely never be insurable or legally drivable in California. Often a lot of damage has been done to make the vehicle safe enough to drive. It is often not profitable either. A $ 50 fee is charged to convert the title to a salvage title. Floods cause major mechanical damage that can often be masked, but it’s still not safe to drive. But if you are determined and think you have a good chance of passing all inspections, you should apply for a revived salvage title.

Title revived in California

Once an insurance company determines that a vehicle is not worth fixing, the title is turned over to the DMV, Department of Motor Vehicles. Most insurance companies determine that a vehicle cannot be repaired if its repair cost exceeds 80 percent of the vehicle’s value.

For example, a man hits a deer square on the front of his 6-year-old Chevy. The front of the vehicle is badly hit and the airbag deploys.

This was covered with full coverage for the insurance adjuster to come out with a fully loaded computer with their repair estimating software. The Chevy is determined to be valued at $ 5,500 and the cost of the repairs is $ 4,800. To determine the percentage of damage, you would take the cost of the repairs $ 4,800 and divide by $ 5,500 , which is the same. 87 Which means the car’s damage is 87 percent of the vehicle’s value

Most salvage vehicles are headed to the junkyard and sold for scrap. The still working parts are taken from the wreckage and sold.

How to get a roadworthy vehicle title recovery in California

  • The first step is to complete an application for a title or registration.
  • When you get to the Department of Motor Vehicles, they’ll want to see the bill from the scrapyard or dismantler or anyone else who was in possession at the time.
  • The vehicle will need to be inspected by the DMV or California Highway Patrol to get it approved to drive and make sure all parts were legally purchased – definitely call CHP to make an appointment. They won’t do the inspection without one. Expect to pay a $ 50 total loss recovery inspection fee.
  • California requires many inspections. So plan on having to get a rest and lights certificate and a pollution certificate if the vehicle was manufactured after 1976.
  • Proof of insurance is required to register your vehicle. Auto insurance is required each time the vehicle is driven.
  • You will have to pay additional title and registration fees once all inspections have been completed.

Auto insurance is required to legally drive in California

Some preferred insurers may not want to cover a revived salvage title, even if you don’t want physical damage coverage.

Start by trying to insure the vehicle with your current auto insurance company. always contact information to make sure the policy is configured correctly. If your auto insurance company doesn’t insure a revived salvage title, your next best chance of finding coverage is through a sub-prime insurance agency.

Getting the single liability policy is the best option. California’s minimum auto insurance coverage is 15,000/30,000/5,000. Most insurance agents recommend increasing those limits to 100,000/300,00/100,000 so you’re protected properly in the event of a serious accident.

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