How to Obtain a Florida Salvage Title

When it comes to Florida salvage title requirements, applicants must first understand exactly what a salvaged title entails. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) determines a salvage vehicle to be any damaged automobile in which 80 percent or more of the value is required to replace it. The owner must meet Florida salvage title requirements to obtain a new title when the vehicle is restored. When a vehicle is declared a total loss by the insurance company, automobile owners are then eligible for a Florida salvage rebuilt title. If the owner chooses not to rebuild the vehicle, he or she may sign the title over to the insurance company. To find information on how to obtain a Florida salvage title, continue reading the topics below:

  • Understanding Vehicle Title Branding in Florida
  • Florida Salvage Title Applications
  • How to Obtain a Florida Salvage Title
  • Protecting Consumers From Title Fraud in Florida

Understanding Vehicle Title Branding in Florida

 Florida salvage title requirements mean that a vehicle must be deemed a total loss, where the vehicle is categorized as either a rebuildable salvage or a non-rebuildable salvage. As it sounds, a rebuildable salvage vehicle may be repaired or rebuilt for use, whereas a not rebuildable salvage can only be sold for parts. Vehicle title branding is the designation of a description given on a vehicle title and registration to indicate the status of a motor vehicle. To find out how to get a title for salvage vehicles, owners may call the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) office. A vehicle may be deemed a total loss due to an automobile accident or most commonly due to damage from flooding.

Florida salvage title requirements prohibit owners from putting a valid Florida license plate on an automobile or driving the vehicle until a salvage title has been issued. The vehicle must be completely repaired before it can be declared a rebuilt vehicle.

Florida Salvage Title Applications

How to obtain a salvage title begins with the insurance company declaring a total loss on a vehicle after an accident. This means the car is unable to be fixed. Florida salvage title requirements are that the cost to repair or replace the vehicle must be at least 80 percent of the full value of the car. When dealing with the loss through the insurance company, where the agency pays the owner for the loss value, the insurance agency takes care of obtaining the salvage title. The Florida salvage title application is the same for the insurance company as it is for the vehicle owner.


A Florida salvage title application must be submitted by the owner of the vehicle if he or she restores the vehicle or is looking to sell it for parts. Owners may obtain an Application for Salvage Title/Certificate of Destruction (form HSMV 82363) from either the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) website or a DMV office.

How to Obtain a Florida Salvage Title

After filling out the Florida salvage title application, the form must be brought to the local tax collector office along with one of the following:

  • Florida original certificate of title for the vehicle
  • Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin (MCO)
  • An out of state title

Filing a Florida salvage title application also requires payment of any applicable fees. When the application is filed, the vehicle branding is then marked on the vehicle history.

Protecting Consumers From Title Fraud in Florida

Florida salvage title requirements are put in place to protect consumers from intentional fraud by vehicle sellers. Unfortunately, buying cars from somewhere besides a dealer is not a very good idea, because they could name a salvage car a good car. It is considered fraud to sell a rebuilt salvage vehicle without revealing the salvage branding. By requiring that a Florida salvage title application be submitted within 72 hours of the vehicle being declared a total loss, it helps to prevent fraud.

If the vehicle owner restores the vehicle, he or she must obtain a salvage title for the car with the title stamped as 'salvage.' Florida salvage title requirements include obtaining a salvage license to sell salvaged vehicles. The law in Florida is that sellers must disclose the salvage or rebuilt status on vehicles to buyers, either on the bill of sale or the title transfer. Not all states have the same laws in place. After a Florida salvage title application is filed with the state, the salvage status is noted in the vehicle's history. Download our guide to read more about checking vehicle history reports, where consumers can see if vehicles are salvage - even if sellers failed to obtain the appropriate titles prior.