Vehicle Industry Registration Procedures Manual

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Section 24 of 38

Chapter 23: Bonds and Certifications

23.010 Diligent Effort Process

When the documents required to establish evidence of ownership are unobtainable, an applicant must submit a Statement of Facts (REG 256) form to substantiate their ownership of the vehicle. In specific cases, the applicant will also be required to submit a certified letter and a motor vehicle bond, vessel bond, or bond alternative.

A REG 256 cannot be completed by a dealer, dismantler, or registration service on behalf of their customer.

Use the following chart to determine when the diligent effort process is required:

If the Applicant Cannot Provide Evidence of Ownership and theThen
• Value of the vehicle is $5,000 or more

• Value of the vessel is $2,000 or Application is a transfer of vehicle with nontransferable registration (goldenrod) regardless of value

• Release from the legal owner/lienholder cannot be obtained, regardless of value
The diligent effort/bond process is required and the following must be submitted:

• A certified letter, returned to the sender unclaimed and unopened, as evidence of a diligent effort. If after 30 days the sender has not received a response, a postal receipt acknowledging receipt of the letter by the addressee may be accepted.

• A REG 256 from the applicant stating:
—What effort was made to contact the last owner(s) of record to obtain evidence of ownership and any supporting documents required, and why it was not obtainable.
—How, when, and from whom the vehicle or vessel was acquired.
—The vehicle or vessel is free of liens not indicated on the application.
—The current value of the vehicle or vessel and how it was determined. If the value was determined by an appraisal, that appraisal must also accompany the REG 256.

• A motor vehicle/vessel bond or a bond alternative.
• Value of the vehicle is $4,999 or less

• Value of the vessel is $1,999 or less
The diligent effort/bond is not required and the following must be submitted:

• Any documentation that establishes ownership of the described vehicle or vessel.

• A REG 256 from the applicant stating:
—From whom the vehicle or vessel was acquired.
—The current value of the vehicle or vessel.
—The vehicle or vessel is free of liens, not indicated on the application.

The diligent effort satisfies the application requirements for supporting documents, including the seller’s odometer disclosure. The REG 256 cannot be completed by a dealer, dismantler, or registration service on behalf of a customer.

Exception: The diligent effort/bond process is not required when documents are submitted by a dealer, dismantler, or registration service for vehicles valued at $4,999 or less or vessels valued at $1,999 or less.