While it would be great to never have any major problems with the vehicles you’re selling or financing, title washing is one problem that can cause your dealership or finance company a lot of headaches. This all-too-common, yet illegal, method of titling a vehicle can halt the vehicle buying or selling process in its tracks. At Consolidated Automotive Services of Indiana, we’d like to share some important information about title washing that can save you hours of frustration and aggravation. 

A Brief Guide to Title Washing

What Is Title Washing?

Washing or cleaning a title occurs when legal information is purposely removed from a title in order to deceive potential buyers about the true condition of the vehicle. A washed title has had information removed or changed that is related to the lien, title brand, or condition of the vehicle. An example of this would be when a dishonest car owner has the title changed from “salvage” to “clean,” omitting any information regarding its damage history.

How Does It Affect the Vehicle?

A washed title can significantly affect the vehicle’s value and reliability. If the car has damage from a previous accident and this is not revealed on the car’s title, the owner could potentially sell the vehicle for much more than it’s worth. Plus, the new owner could be in grave danger while driving as the unknown damage could pose a huge safety risk. 

How Is It Done?

There are three common methods that offenders use to illegally wash titles, and they include the following:

  • Relocation: As title brands vary across states, the owner could relocate the vehicle to a neighboring state where that specific title brand isn’t recognized. 
  • Forgery: It is possible to alter the information on the original title in order to conceal important information that should be noted on this document. 
  • Reapplication: The seller could reapply for a new title without disclosing any information about the car’s history.

No Worries with Consolidated Automotive

Let the experts at Consolidated Automotive Services conduct title searches on behalf of your finance company or dealership. We have decades of experience and know what to look for when researching titles. Call us at (812) 988-8300 to request a quote today. We serve all 50 states with our duplicate title services, boat and RV titles, repossession titles, and many more specialized out-of-state title solutions.

Source: MacLeod, Carter. “What Is Title Washing?” Web article. CARFAX. 27 Oct. 2022. Web. 03 Jan. 2022.