What is Title Washing?

Jan | 20 | 11

When a truck’s title is stamped with a title or odometer brand, such as “Junk”, “Salvage”, “Flooded” or “Odometer Not Actual Mileage”, the truck immediately has a lower market value and will be more difficult to sell.

That’s why sellers (criminals) use a process of washing off the brand from the title.  Sellers wash the title by transferring a title branded vehicle to a state that doesn’t recognize the brand. Or, by altering the title so the new state doesn’t realize the vehicle previously included a brand.  When the state issues a new title, it can result in a clean title.  This clean title is what the seller (criminal) will present to an unsuspecting buyer.

To help protect the consumer’s interest, RigDig partnered with the Department of Justice’s NMVTIS database to help consumers detect previous title brands that may have been washed from the current title.

Since 2000, there have been over 639,000 federally recordable, tow-away accidents for class 3-8 trucks (for valid VINs) reported in RigDig. Of these accidents, over 23,000 resulted in a fatality.

VIN Cloning is a growing crime, where criminals take the vehicle identification number (VIN) from a wrecked vehicle while it is sitting in a junkyard, then create new VIN plates for a stolen vehicle of the same make, model, year and color. RigDig can protect you from purchasing a VIN cloned vehicle.

In April of 2013, 3.7% of the RigDig Reports run by users were for trucks that were flagged as either Junk, Salvage or had a serious Salvage Title.

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