According to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV) individuals who own a motor vehicle but have insufficient proof of ownership may apply for a Certificate of Title Surety Bond, also known as an alternative title, bonded title, or lost title bond.
The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) allows a similar program for the owners of boats or outboard motors that have a lost or defective title. Individuals who are interested in an abandoned vessel that has no proof of ownership may also apply for an alternative title.
To be approved for an alternative title, a custom Lost Title Bond is required of the applicant. In order to qualify, you must be either a Texas resident, military personnel that is stationed in the state, or have a motor vehicle, boat, or outboard motor that was last titled in the State of Texas. The vessel must be in your possession and cannot be considered stolen or in any other pending lawsuits.
Jet Insurance Company provides the Lost Title Bond to act as an assurance to the TxDMV or TPWD that their department will not be held liable for any unknowingly lost or stolen vehicles that have received an alternative title. In cases where the true owner of the vehicle comes forward, the surety bond may be used as restitution to cover the financial loss of their property.
The bond amount for the Lost Title Bond must be 1.5 times the value of the vehicle, boat, or outboard motor; and approval of the limit by the appropriate department is required.
For motor vehicles that are 25 years or older, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles will determine and assign the bond value. However, appraisals that are found to be less than $4,000 will not be accepted by the TxDMV.
At Jet, the cost of the Lost Title Bond is just a small fraction of the bond limit and is based on a soft credit check of the applicant. For example, if you are seeking a $5,000 bond amount, rates start at a one-time payment of $100 for the required three-year bond term. If you are interested in additional bond amounts, take a look at the chart below for our preferred tier rates at various limits.
|Bond Limit||3-Year Term Cost|
Applications with higher bond limits may require a review by one of our underwriters. But no need to worry, this process is simple and we will get you an approved rate as quickly as possible.
Our application for the Lost Title Bond can be completed from the comfort of your home! All we ask is that you provide us with some general information to get you an approved rate. This includes the year, make, and VIN of the bonded vessel, contact information, an indication of the required bond limit, and your social security number for the soft credit check (which will not affect your score). Once the application has been submitted and reviewed, Jet will email you approved rate options that are ready for immediate purchase. You’ll receive a copy of your receipt and bond form as soon as payment has been fulfilled.
The original signed and sealed Lost Title Bond must be submitted to your local county tax office along with the required bonded title paperwork. It is important to note that the title must be officially applied for within 30 days of obtaining your surety bond. Failure to complete this step in a timely manner can result in you having to purchase a completely new bond for filing.
For county tax office mailing addresses and contact information, use the Find Your Local Tax Office & DMV online search tool.
As for where to find the alternative title application and other required documents, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles provides the required paperwork on the “Bought a Motor Vehicle Without a Title?” webpage. Alternative title forms for boats and outboard motors can be found on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s References, Tools & Forms for Boat Titling/Registration webpage.
The Lost Title Bond will remain active for three years following its effective date. The appropriate department will release the liability of your bond once this mandated time period has officially ended, and you will then receive an original title for your motor vehicle, boat, or outboard motor.
Unfortunately, the bond is not up for cancellation and will not be released by the TxDMV or TPWD until the expiration date has been met. If you ever have any questions regarding your bond or need to update your information, you can contact the Jet team at [email protected] or call our office at 855-296-2663 and we will be happy to assist you.
According to Chapter 31 and Chapter 501 of the Texas State Statutes, the Lost Title Bond may be utilized by individuals who are unable to provide the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles or the Parks and Wildlife Department with an original certificate of title (or other proof of ownership) for their motor vehicle, boat, or outboard motor. This can happen if the individual is unable to get into contact with the previous owner of the vessel for the necessary documents.
The State of Texas also allows individuals to apply for an alternative title for an abandoned boat or outboard motor that has been left on their property for more than seven consecutive days. This will of course only be granted if the TPWD cannot find previous proof of ownership for the boat/outboard motor.
It is pretty rare for a claim to be filed on the Lost Title Bond, but this may occur if the true owner comes forward seeking restitution for their lost or stolen vehicle, boat, or outboard motor. The damaged party will have to take civil action against the bonded title owner, and if the court rules in favor of the claimant, the bond will cover the estimated value of the property and/or the losses they have incurred due to the incident.
If you receive a court-ordered claim notice, immediately contact Jet! Our team will ask that you provide us with all available information and documentation regarding the claim. We will use these details for our own review and investigation of the alleged incident.
Per the Lost Title Bond form, Jet is legally obligated to make payment up to the custom bond amount for justified claims?payouts will never exceed the surety bond’s limit. You are ultimately held responsible for your actions and must reimburse Jet for the claim payout that was made on your behalf.