Car owners must apply for a salvage title in Maine if and when they declare their motor vehicles a total loss, or when an insurance company pays them off as a total loss. In general, the state’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) will issue a car salvage certificate only if a car is repairable. If the vehicle has sustained extensive damages and cannot be restored to operable status, the owner will be required to scrap or dismantle the car and surrender its existing vehicle title certificate.

You can also utilize the option to get a rebuilt title in ME if and when you restore your salvage vehicle by conducting the necessary repairs. In such cases, however, the vehicle and its component parts will have to pass an inspection, which will check the car’s roadworthiness. After you relicense vehicles that were classified as salvage title cars, your new title certificate will be branded accordingly, showing that the vehicle was previously declared salvage but is now deemed roadworthy.

What is a Maine salvage title?

A Maine salvage car title is a type of BMV certificate that is only issued to vehicles that are classified as a total loss by the car owners or their insurers. The purpose of this salvage certificate is to catalog inoperable motor vehicles in the state, which cannot be relicensed until they are repaired. As such, in order to obtain a salvage title, a vehicle will be required to meet certain criteria and be declared a total loss.

In addition to ME salvage titles, the BMV also issues rebuilt certificates. Rebuilt titles are issued for vehicles that were declared salvage at one point, but were later repaired and passed the corresponding inspections. Depending on the amount of work that was necessary to rebuild the vehicle, the state BMV will either issue a rebuilt title or a rebuilt salvage title. Rebuilt titles are issued for vehicles that had at least one but less than five component parts replaced during their reconstruction process. Conversely, the rebuilt salvage title will be issued for cars reconstructed by replacing five or more component parts or by joining the frames of at least two different vehicles.

Maine Salvage Title Eligibility Requirements

Cars must be declared a total loss by an insurance company or their owners in order to be issued a Maine salvage vehicle title. Insurers often determine that a vehicle is a total loss when its damages exceed more than 74 percent of its actual market value without damages. Furthermore, a motor vehicle will qualify for a salvage certificate and be branded as such in any of the following situations:

  • An insurance company has paid off a total loss settlement on a wrecked vehicle and has obtained its title.
  • A vehicle owner has declared his or her motor vehicle as salvage and decided to keep it rather than transferring it to a recycler.
  • A towing company has claimed the vehicle and declared it a total loss.

Vehicle owners will be required to surrender title certificates and obtain an ME salvage title within a certain time period after a car is declared salvage.

How to Get a Salvage Title in Maine

If you are wondering how to get a salvage title in Maine, note that you will be required to submit your request in person through a nearby BMV branch office. Moreover, the application process for a car salvage certificate may vary depending on who determines the vehicle’s salvage status and condition. For instance, if your vehicle was branded salvage by your insurance company, your insurer will be responsible for applying for a salvage title, regardless of whether or not you choose to retain the motor vehicle. In such cases, you will have to surrender your title certificate to the insurance company. If you choose to keep the vehicle and repair its damages, you will receive an ME DMV salvage title once it has been issued to your insurer.

On the other hand, if you determine that your vehicle qualifies for a salvage certificate without involving your insurer, you will have to submit the titling request yourself. To do so, you will be required to mail in the corresponding application form and pay the appropriate fee to the BMV Title Unit in Augusta. Otherwise, you may submit these documents through a nearby Bureau of Motor Vehicles location. In any case, you will have to surrender your previous title certificate and show evidence that your vehicle was declared a total loss.

Salvage Car Inspections in Maine

Submitting your vehicle to a salvage vehicle inspection in Maine is not a mandatory step when obtaining a certificate of salvage. In such cases, you will only need proof that your vehicle was declared a total loss. However, when applying for a rebuilt car title after repairing your salvage vehicle, the motor vehicle and its component parts will have to pass an inspection. General vehicle inspections are conducted by the Maine State Police at licensed inspection stations.

After meeting the mandatory vehicle inspection requirements, you can proceed with the application process for an ME rebuilt salvage title by filling out the Affidavit of Rebuilt or Repaired Salvage Vehicle (Form MVT-103). You will also need the collect the receipts for all the parts used to rebuild the motor vehicle, as well as pay for the applicable service fees. In general, you can find the application form for rebuilt titles at local BMV offices or through the bureau’s official online portal.

Maine Salvage Title Fees

The last step in the application process for a Maine salvage title is arranging payment for the applicable fees. The current cost of a BMV certificate of salvage is $33. On the other hand, if you are converting a salvage certificate to a restored salvage title, you may be required to pay other types of fees, such as a vehicle inspection fee, a titling fee and the applicable registration costs.

Note: If you apply for an expedited rush title, you will be charged an extra $10 rush fee.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 10 2020.