Do you have a car in Michigan, but no title? You might be able to get a title in your name by getting a bonded title.
Short on time? Check out our Bonded Title FAQ page.
What is a Michigan Bonded Title?
A Michigan Bonded Title (also known as a Michigan Certificate of Title Surety, Michigan Lost Title Bond, or Michigan Defective Title Bond) is a document that proves you own your vehicle.
A bonded title is just like a regular title, except the DMV keeps the bond associated with the title on record. A bonded title is simply a title with a surety bond attached to it.
Why You Need To Purchase a Surety Bond
The purpose of a Michigan Bonded Title is to protect any previous owners of the vehicle and the state of Michigan.
You can learn more about how the surety bond works and what it means to be bonded at the end of the article.
When You Might Need a Michigan Bonded Title
You might need a bonded title in any of the following situations, though this not a complete list:
- You bought a vehicle and didn’t receive a title
- You bought a vehicle and only received a bill of sale
- You bought a vehicle and received an improperly assigned title
- You bought a vehicle, received, and lost the title before transferring it into your name*
*If you had the title in your name at one point in time, you can get a duplicate certificate of title by completing a duplicate or replacement title application and paying a $15 replacement title fee.
Note: If your vehicle is over 10 years old and has a value of $2,500 or less, you do not need to get an MI Bonded Title. In this instance, you can complete a Michigan Vehicle Ownership Certification.
Not sure if you need a Michigan Bonded Title? Check out this awesome infographic.
How to get a Michigan Bonded Title
Step #1: Contact DMV to make sure you are eligible
Your local DMV is the only entity that can tell you if you are eligible for a bonded title or not.
While we, Surety Solutions, wrote this blog post to educate you on situations where you might need a bonded title, we cannot say for certain if this is a valid solution for you.
Contact your local DMV, explain your situation, and ask if you could get a bonded title.
If they say yes, move on to Step #2.
Step #2: Determine the value of your vehicle
You can also get a vehicle appraisal from a licensed Michigan car dealer.
Once you have the value of your vehicle, move on to the next step.
Step #3: Calculate your bond amount
Your bond amount must be 2 times the value of your vehicle (that you determined in Step #2).
For example, if your vehicle is valued at $2,000, your bond amount needs to be $4,000.
Calculate your bond amount, then move on to the next step.
Step #4: Purchase a Michigan Lost Title Bond
Purchase a bond from a surety bond company. Make sure you apply for the correct bond amount that you determined in Step #3.
You do not need to pay the full bond amount to get bonded. Most people only pay $100 for their bond. You only need to pay for your bond one time.
Surety Solutions, A Gallagher Company does not issue Certificate of Lost Title Bonds
Before you purchase your title bond – learn important payment info
Once you purchase your bond, the surety company will mail it to you in the mail. Then you can move on to the next step.
Step #5: Submit
Send your original bond to the Michigan Secretary of State and wait to be approved for a bonded title.
You will also likely need to complete a title application and pay a title fee.
What it Means to be Bonded
When you get a bonded title, you are promising that you are the true owner of the vehicle, and that you will take responsibility for any bond claims.
If someone comes forward later on and says that they are the owner of the vehicle and that you should not have been granted a bonded title, they can make a claim on your bond.
If the claim is determined to be valid, you would be responsible for satisfying the claim. Usually, this would mean a financial compensation. The surety company would determine what is fair.
If you fail to satisfy the claim, the surety company would satisfy the claim for you. Then, they would come to you for reimbursement. Essentially, the bond holds you liable for your actions, no matter what.
Want more information about what happens if someone made a claim on your bond? Check out this resource.
Do Michigan Bonded Titles Expire?
Yes. MI Bonded Titles expire 3 years from their effective date. The bond remains on file with the DMV and is associated with the title for the entire 3 years.
If no one comes forward during those 3 years and makes a claim against your MI Lost Title Bond, then the bond will no longer be associated with the vehicle’s title.