Getting an Alabama salvage title is an important step if and when a motor vehicle sustains heavy damages and qualifies for the salvage classification. In order to receive a car salvage title from the state Department of Revenue (DOR), vehicles have to meet the definition of a total loss. In any case, it is important to note that either the original owner or an insurance company can submit the salvage declaration. On the other hand, the application process varies slightly depending on the identity of the applicant.

If a vehicle receives an AL salvage certificate and then is successfully repaired, its owner may become eligible to obtain a new title and car registration. However, in order to apply for a rebuilt title, the motor vehicle will have to pass an inspection process designed to check its roadworthiness and the validity of its component parts. Learn more about the state salvage title laws and procedures by reading the sections below.

What is an Alabama salvage title?

Before learning how to get a salvage title in Alabama, you are encouraged to familiarize yourself with what a DOR salvage certificate is. In general, a salvage car title is a special type of titling document used to assign ownership over a damaged or wrecked vehicle to аn individual owner, insurance company or third-party entity.

The purpose of a salvage title is to document all inoperable vehicles that cannot be safely driven due to the damages they have incurred. The state laws concerning this type of credential are designed to protect car buyers and sellers, since they require vehicle owners to declare the full history of each damage sustained by a car.

A common subcategory of the AL vehicle salvage title is the junk certificate. If a vehicle has sustained extreme damages and is rendered unrepairable, it will not qualify for a salvage title. In such cases, the car will receive a title certificate branded as junk or parts-only, which will permanently disqualify it from receiving a new title or registration.

Alabama Salvage Title Eligibility Requirements

Residents can only successfully apply for an Alabama salvage vehicle title if they own a car that meets the state definition of a salvage vehicle. According to current law, DOR salvage certificates are reserved for damaged or destroyed cars that were paid off as total loss vehicles by an insurer or another legal entity. In general, these damages must be greater than 74 percent of the vehicle actual value without the damages. Motor vehicles can also qualify for an AL salvage title by uninsured or self-insured owners who have not secured the services of an auto insurance company.

Note: Trailers, manufactured homes, low speed vehicles and passenger cars that are older than 35 model years are exempted from the state titling requirements, including the need to receive a salvage title.

How to Get a Salvage Title in Alabama

In order to get a salvage title certificate in Alabama, applicants will have to complete several steps that will vary depending on whether the applicant is the original owner or an insurance provider. When applying for a salvage title, you will be required to complete the following steps:

  1. Verify the vehicle identification number (VIN) and the basic vehicle information by comparing the details of the existing title.
  2. Fill out the Application for Salvage Certificate of Title (Form MVT 41-1).
    1. Complete and sign Section A if applying as an uninsured or self-insured vehicle owner.
    2. Complete and sign Section B if applying as a representative of an insurance company.
  3. Obtain lien release forms or fill out the lienholder information, if applicable.
  4. Arrange payment for the applicable fee.
  5. Submit the MVT 41-1 form, the fee payment and the current title certificate to the following address:
Alabama Department of Revenue
Motor Vehicle Division
P.O. Box 327640
Montgomery, AL 36132-7640

After receiving a salvage title request, the Alabama DOR will mail the salvage certificate either to the applicant’s address or to his or her lienholder, provided that the car’s lien has not yet been satisfied. When applying for a salvage title, insurance companies will have to obtain the properly-reassigned title from the car owner before submitting their application.

Salvage Car Inspections in Alabama

The state DOR will issue a salvage title in Alabama without requiring a vehicle owner to submit his or vehicle to an inspection procedure. However, if you choose to apply for a rebuilt salvage title after restoring a vehicle to operable status, it will have to be thoroughly examined by an approved vehicle inspector. The purpose of this procedure is to check whether or not the vehicle meets the state safety standards and whether or not it was reconstructed with stolen components. To initiate the application process for an AL rebuilt title, you will first have to schedule your inspection by submitting the following items to the state DOR:

  • The existing salvage title
  • A filled out Application for Inspection of a Salvage Vehicle and Affirmation Supporting Salvage Certificate (Form INV 26-15)
  • The bills of sale and/or other ownership documents for the parts used to rebuild the vehicle
  • A car registration copy, if applying as the original vehicle owner, or a rebuilder’s license, if applying as a new owner
  • An Inspection Application Remittance Advice (Form INV 31-1)
  • The payment for the applicable inspection and titling fees

As soon as the DOR receives a request for a salvage car inspection, it will schedule an appointment and inform the applicant of the details of his or her upcoming inspection. If the vehicle passes the inspection, the AL Department of Revenue will manufacture a new rebuilt title and deliver it to the applicant.

Alabama Salvage Title Fees

The last step when applying for an Alabama salvage certificate or a rebuilt title is paying the applicable titling fees. The application salvage title fee is currently set at $15. On the other hand, when getting a rebuilt title, you will have to pay additional costs.

For instance, you will have to pay a $75 application fee and a $15 title fee, which equals to $90 when scheduling your vehicle inspection. Then, you will have to pay the applicable registration costs, provided that you choose to obtain new license plates for your vehicle.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 10 2020.