Running a Shop Law

ARA seeks congressional enforcement of NMVTIS

Order Reprints

Nov. 6, 2012—As a result of vehicle damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, the Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA) is urging the U.S. Congress to review implementation and enforcement of the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS).

Rainfall and flooding along the East Coast has left several vehicles submerged in water, the ARA said, which has the potential to damage them beyond repair. The ARA said full implementation and enforcement of the NMVTIS—a national electronic system that provides consumers with information about a vehicle's condition and history—is critical to ensure that all flood-damaged vehicles are appropriately tracked, and to prevent them from being sold to unsuspecting car buyers.

"According to the Department of Justice (DOJ), after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, law enforcement and insurance crime experts reported truckloads of flooded vehicles being taken out of Louisiana to other states where they were dried out, cleaned and sold to unsuspecting consumers in other states," said Michael Wilson, CEO of the ARA. "NMVTIS must be fully implemented and utilized to prevent this activity from happening again.”

The ARA said those practices will only be stopped if all U.S. states participate with NMVTIS, and all individuals and entities required to report to the system are held accountable.

"Regrettably, DOJ has limited resources to do this. ARA has urged Congress time and time again to intercede and appropriate sufficient resources to DOJ to implement the program, increase state participation and efficiently enforce violations,” Wilson said. “Only with sufficient resources can DOJ and the appropriate state law enforcement entities target all businesses and individuals who are operating under the radar and force them to fulfill their obligations under the statute.”

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