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Old 05-23-2017, 08:41 AM   #1
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1976 31' Sovereign
Terre Haute , Indiana
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Issue with the VIN on the title (I turned into a 1)

So I'm in the process of trying to transfer the title on my 76 AS and I've hit a snag.

My AS was purchased from out of state (Alaska via Ohio) which in Indiana means I have to get a VIN verification form filled out by either a LEO or someone at the BMV office. Yesterday I had a county officer come out and fill out the form, and here is the issue. The first letter of my actual VIN is "I", but on the Alaskan title there is a 1.

I knew this wasn't going to be good.

So I went to the BMV office to see what would happen. They immediately looked at the title and VIN verification form and said they couldn't process the title if it didn't match. After a phone call to the head office they tell me I need to call the Alaskan BMV and get them to send me a letter stating that the 1 should be an I, and all will be right with the world.

After 2 hours of being on hold, or passed around, with the Alaskan BMV, I finally get someone who looks up the VIN and the Ohio title it was transferred from, and they tell me that the VIN from Ohio also had a 1 on it, and that was Ohio's problem, so I needed to call them.

Today I call the Ohio BMV. The nice lady looked up the title, and tells me that they only have records retention for 12 years, and that going back to 2006 (the last transfer they have on record) the first digit of the VIN is a 1.

Soooooo now I'm waiting to call Alaska back and ask what I should do next. I also called the Indiana BMV and they said if Alaska won't do anything then I will likely have to get a court order to assign me ownership and get me an Indiana title. She also mentioned that they are no longer allowed to use "I"s, only "1"s because of this exact issue. Nice!

SO my main questions to you guys are have you ever seen this before? I'm guessing I can't be the first. and next is there any issue with the first digit being a 1 when it should be an I?? would that effect future value or sale?
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Old 05-23-2017, 09:12 AM   #2
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The regs vary state to state. I had a similar problem in NM. I was able to file an affidavit along with the previous owner. Also a NCIS check was needed to make sure it was not stolen. You may have to put up a bond in case someone disputes your ownership. There are entities you can find on the internet that may be able to help with registration. I have heard it is easier to register in Vermont, then you can transfer to another state. Once you get a good title it should have no effect on resale.
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Old 05-23-2017, 01:54 PM   #3
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Have a look into a bonded title, in AZ that lets you git a clear title and the bond pays if some one show's up to make a claim.
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Old 05-23-2017, 02:13 PM   #4
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1976 31' Sovereign
Terre Haute , Indiana
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No, I'm just getting started down this road so I've not looked into much. I'm on hold with Alaska again right now

Edit: So I just looked up getting a bonded title in Indiana. That's basically what the Indiana BMV person told me I could do worst case. There process doesn't seem to bad, other than having to deal with getting a court order.
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Old 05-23-2017, 02:37 PM   #5
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Check with your local state highway patrol office.We have had this same situation happen with automobiles.Bring your trailer and your title to them.They do a visual VIN inspection fill out a form and you are good to go.
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Old 05-23-2017, 02:41 PM   #6
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I think this may be a problem that only Ben Franklin could fix.
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Old 05-23-2017, 08:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moflash View Post
Check with your local state highway patrol office.We have had this same situation happen with automobiles.Bring your trailer and your title to them.They do a visual VIN inspection fill out a form and you are good to go.
well, that's what brought this problem to my attention. Because this AS has an out of state title, Indiana required a VIN verification to be done by local LEO. He came to my house and that's when we found the error.
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Old 05-24-2017, 12:09 PM   #8
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As I understand it there are no "I'"s on vin's and titles for just that reason. Only "1"s. There are no "O"s only zeros also.
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Old 05-24-2017, 12:43 PM   #9
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I had the same problem with a truck I sold to a friend out of state the vin on the truck didn't match the title . As it turned out the title was typed wrong when truck was new . back then before computers they kept records in a file room and a nice lady went and looked it up for me . This was in Ohio I know this doesn't help but that happens all the time . When I buy now I take a picture of the vin plate and check against the title . All I had to do was buy a new title . Hope things work out for you.
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Old 05-24-2017, 03:50 PM   #10
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I had no title only a bill of sale, I had to use "International Title Service." To get my plates they registered it in Maine. Then after 1 year I was able to register it in New York. cost $350. Ten yrs ago but it turns out that was cheaper than the sales tax NY would have charged.
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Old 05-25-2017, 12:46 PM   #11
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Try supplying them with information, sometimes they like that. On my 69 Caravel someone put the letter F in place of the letter D long ago. The DMV lady pulled up a title transfer from back in 1977, and it was even wrong at that time. We both decided that if it hadn't caused a problem for forty years that we wouldn't be concerned with it now. She issued me the new title, and gave me a form to get the D put back later if I decide to pursue it, which I most likely will. And here I thought that Missouri was the only pain in the neck state on title issues. Good Luck. I guess I'll go ahead and say that twice since you're dealing with the state GOOD LUCK!
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Old 05-25-2017, 02:05 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocco52 View Post
As I understand it there are no "I'"s on vin's and titles for just that reason. Only "1"s. There are no "O"s only zeros also.
I had the same issue with the 1 and I. A deputy came out and verified my VIN. The deputy said since there can't be a "I" on a VIN it has to be a "1". The deputy filled out a VIN verification form and that solved the problem. This was for a vintage trailer.
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Old 05-26-2017, 08:46 AM   #13
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Sending you lots of good wishes. What a mess! Since they know they have an issue why not help out. Oh well, government for you. I had the same problem only due to a DMV
clerical error, yet instantly I was the guilty party. No wonder people register out of the state of CA not to mention the huge double taxation and permit fees. Mine just came to a little under $12,000.00. Ouch! there went my down payment!
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Old 05-26-2017, 09:04 AM   #14
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I have found if you get a NO from the DMV clerk if you get on a different line and ask another clerk 50/50 chance you will get a YES.

I have a 1971 NM "House Trailer" plate on my Tradewind. NM has a YOM (year of manufacture) law which says if a vintage plate is unassigned you can have it assigned to your vehicle of the same year. To make a long story short the local DMV said "this is the Department of MOTOR VEHICLES a trailer does not have a motor and is not a motor vehicle so YOM does not apply". So, I called my state representative who called the head of state DMV who said "of course you can" and intervened for me.
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