A salvage title means a car has been damaged near or in excess of the value of the car.
- Out-of-State Salvage: Out-of-state titles branded as “Salvage” that pass DC DMV emissions, safety, and anti-theft inspections will be titled in DC maintaining the previous state’s title brand (i.e., MD Salvage, VA Salvage, CA Salvage, etc.).
- DC Salvage: Titles branded as Salvage per the vehicle’s owner/lessor request (normally due to an insurance settlement).
- Non-Repairable: Vehicle that is non-repairable will be titled/branded as Non-Repairable.
When the DC titled vehicle is considered a “total loss” by an insurance company the following requirements must be met:
- Insurance companies that make a damage settlement for a salvage/non-repairable vehicle and do not keep the vehicle must notify the vehicle’s owner/lessor of his or her obligation to apply to DC DMV for a salvage/non-repairable title within 30 calendar days of settlement. No MPD Anti-Theft needed.
- Insurance companies that make a damage settlement for a salvage/non-repairable vehicle and keep the vehicle must apply to DC DMV for a salvage/non-repairable title within 30 calendar days of settlement.
- The owner must apply within 30 calendar days of a vehicle’s being damaged and before the vehicle is repaired.
- The lessor must apply for a salvage/non-repairable title within 30 calendar days of being notified of the vehicle’s damaged status.
- A lessee of a salvage or non-repairable vehicle shall notify the lessor within 30 calendar days of the date the damaged occurred and shall not repair the vehicle prior to the issuance of salvage title to the lessor.
Here's an example of a salvage title [PDF].
To Register a Salvage Vehicle
A salvage vehicle that passes DC DMV Emissions, Safety and Anti-Theft inspections will be titled/branded as “Rebuilt Salvage”.
- All salvage vehicles must pass DC safety inspection and a Metropolitan Police Department’s (MPD) DC anti-theft inspection prior to DC DMV registration.
- DC MPD’s anti-theft inspection form
- DC DMV's salvage vehicle procedure acknowledgement form and all required documents (as listed in the form) must only be submitted to:
DC Department of Motor Vehicles
95 M Street SW
Washington, DC 20024
Note: The Metropolitan Police Department will not accept the Anti-Theft Inspection form in person.