Idaho's salvage vehicle laws will change on July 1 by removing age and value exemptions for older salvage vehicles and requiring that all vehicles deemed a total loss by an owner or insurance company be reported and issued a salvage certificate.
Any car or truck that has been declared a total loss and for which a title is being applied for on or after July 1 will receive a branded title identifying the vehicle as repaired or reconstructed regardless of loss date.
The amendments to the Idaho code, passed during the 2006 legislative session, do not apply to motorcycles, trailers and certain types of motor homes.
The new codes affect vehicles older than five years and that have a value of $6,000 or less. While these vehicles still do not have to be inspected by a motor vehicle investigator prior to repair, a Salvage Vehicle Affidavit will need to accompany an Idaho title application. All vehicles in this category will receive a branded title saying Reconstructed Vehicle.
Laws have not changed for cars and trucks newer than five years and worth more than $6,000. These vehicles still will be required to be inspected by a motor vehicle investigator before and after repairs. The investigator will determine whether a salvaged vehicle in this category will be branded as repaired or reconstructed, depending on the extent of damage.
Pictures or other documentation of a vehicle's condition cannot be substituted for a first inspection. A vehicle with any repairs made before an inspection will automatically be branded as a Reconstructed Vehicle, said Amy Smith, vehicle services manager for ITDs Division of Motor Vehicles.
The process of branding vehicle titles should help consumers by clearly identifying a car or truck they might want to purchase as being previously salvaged, Smith said.
More information on Idaho's salvage vehicle procedures and Salvage Vehicle Affidavit forms are available through county DMV offices and on the Web at itd.idaho.gov and click on DMV.