V C Section 5753 Delivery of Certificate and Card

Delivery of Certificate and Card

5753.  (a) It is unlawful for any person to fail or neglect properly to endorse, date, and deliver the certificate of ownership and, when having possession, to deliver the registration card to a transferee who is lawfully entitled to a transfer of registration.

(b) Except when the certificate of ownership is demanded in writing by a purchaser, a vehicle dealer licensed under this code shall satisfy the delivery requirement of this section by submitting appropriate documents and fees to the department for transfer of registration in accordance with Sections 5906 and 4456 of this code and rules and regulations promulgated thereunder.

(c) (1) Within 15 business days after receiving payment in full for the satisfaction of a security interest and a written instrument signed by the grantor of the security interest designating the transferee and authorizing release of the legal owner's interest, the legal owner shall release its security interest and mail, transmit, or deliver the vehicle's certificate of ownership to the transferee who, due to satisfaction of the security interest, is lawfully entitled to the transfer of legal ownership.

(2) If a lease provides a lessee with the option to purchase the leased vehicle, within 15 business days after receiving payment in full for the purchase, and all documents necessary to effect the transfer, the lessor shall mail, transmit, or deliver the vehicle's certificate of ownership to the transferee, who, due to purchase of the vehicle, is lawfully entitled to the transfer of legal ownership.

(d) The certificate of ownership delivered pursuant to subdivision (c) shall be signed by the legal owner or lessor to reflect release of the legal owner's interest or transfer of the lessor's interest in the vehicle or accompanied by a form provided by the department to accomplish the same result and signed by the legal owner or lessor. If the legal owner or lessor is not in possession or control of the certificate of ownership, the legal owner or lessor shall, within the time provided in subdivision (c) for the mailing, transmittal, or delivery of the certificate of ownership, take any action required by the department to release the legal owner's security interest or transfer the lessor's interest in the vehicle and within that time shall mail, transmit, or deliver written notice of its taking that action to the transferee.

(e) A legal owner or lessor that fails to satisfy the requirements of subdivisions (c) and (d), shall, without offset or reduction, pay the transferee twenty-five dollars ($25) per day for each day that the requirements of subdivisions (c) and (d) remain unsatisfied, not to exceed a maximum payment of two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500). If the legal owner or lessor fails to pay this amount within 60 days following written demand by the transferee, the amount shall be trebled, not to exceed a maximum payment of seven thousand five hundred dollars ($7,500), and the transferee shall be entitled to costs and reasonable attorneys fees incurred in any court action brought to collect the payment. The right to recover these payments is cumulative with and is not in substitution or derogation of any remedy otherwise available at law or equity.

(f) A legal owner, upon written request of the transferee, shall disclose any pertinent information regarding the amount of payment and the documents necessary to release the obligation secured by the legal owner's interest.

Amended Sec. 2, Ch. 151, Stats. 2003. Effective January 1, 2004.