Applying for a bonded title in Arizona is a process designed as a last resort when you are out of other options for proving ownership of a vehicle. If the vehicle was previously titled in your name or you can obtain a court order attesting to your ownership, a bonded title isn’t necessary.
What Is a Bonded Title in Arizona?
Like in most other states, with a bonded title, you supply a bond through a surety company in order to insure the state against any fraudulent claims of ownership. In order to obtain the bond, you won’t have to pay the full bond amount, only a percentage.
Applications for a bonded title in Arizona are handled by the Arizona Department of Transportation (DOT). If you have any questions or need help throughout the process, you’ll want to contact your local MVD or Authorized Third Party office for assistance.
How to Get a Bonded Title in Arizona
These steps are the most common requirements. The exact process will vary depending on what is required for your particular situation.
Step 1: Contact Your Local MVD or Authorized Third Party Office
As mentioned above, the exact requirements can vary slightly based on your specific circumstances. Before you begin any other step of the process, it’s important to get in contact and see what will and won’t be required of you. The rest of these steps are designed as a general outline of what’s normally required.
Note: Your vehicle should be free of any liens before applying for a bonded title.
Step 2: Obtain a Vehicle Inspection
This is the only step that every applicant for an Arizona bonded title will need to complete. You’ll need to go to one of the offices mentioned above and have a law enforcement officer complete a Level 1 inspection to verify the vehicle identification number (VIN) and confirm that the vehicle has not been stolen.
Step 3: Compile Any Ownership Documents You May Have
If you’re applying for a bonded title in Arizona, you won’t have a previous title for the car, but you may have a bill of sale or other documentation from the vehicle’s previous owner. It’s best to bring these documents with you to the MVD or Authorized Third Party office.
Step 4: Complete a Bonded Title Affidavit and Certified Letter
The Bonded Title Affidavit document will be provided at the office. For the certified letter requirement, you’ll need to mail one to each person who may have a claim on the vehicle or was involved in its sale to you. These letters should request that they either submit a competing claim for ownership or provide a notarized statement that they do not own the vehicle.
If the letters are answered, there’s no requirement to obtain a bond. If they are not, the state requires you to obtain a surety bond.
Step 5: Obtain an Arizona Title Bond
An official at the MVD or Authorized Third Party office will assess your vehicle’s value and assign a bond amount. The bond amount is generally 1.5 times the vehicle’s assessed value. Once you know the bond’s required value, you can obtain it from a bonding agency authorized to operate in Arizona. That agency will provide the paperwork for you to submit with your final application.
If your application is accepted, you’ll receive a bonded title valid for three years. If no claim is made on your title during that time, you’ll be able to apply for a non-bonded title.