There are some new laws on the books that began on January 1, 2023. One of those laws has been enacted to protect some used car buyers. The new law extends regulations already in place to provide more information to potential used car buyers.

Who is affected?

Anyone looking to buy an older, less expensive vehicle may find a bit more piece of mind. They will now know if the vehicle they are buying has suffered extensive prior damage.

What exactly has changed?

Minnesota's salvage title regulations have been updated to include a "prior salvage" brand. According to Minnesota State Lawmakers:

It aims to solve an issue of less expensive vehicles holding a clean Minnesota title, despite incurring damage that costs more than 80% of its value or causes an insurance company to declare the vehicle a total loss.

What does it mean for me?

If you are buying or selling a less expensive older car under $9,000, this law concerns you. Dealers will have broader disclosure requirements to include "all brands on the title." They will need to give you written notice that you sign to acknowledge.

businesswoman and businessman signing contract in the office

A task force was created to prevent title washing.

Why was the law put into place? Some sellers of cars were "title washing." They used falsified documents to make it appear the car never received significant damage. A task force was created, which ultimately led to this bill being passed in the Minnesota Legislature.

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Is it just for cars?

Motorcycles and heavier commercial vehicles are also subject to the same title branding and disclosure requirements as other types of vehicles. In-state and out-of-state vehicles will also be treated consistently.

isolated motorcycle on a white background
Zoonar RF

So in short, if you're buying an older, expensive car the law now protects you from title washing.

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