As NMVTIS Nears 99% Completion, Texas Shares It’s NMVTIS Guide

The Anti Car Theft Act of 1992, put in place to cut down on the illegal activity of trafficking in stolen vehicles.  This act gives law enforcement another useful tool to assist in their fight against auto theft, combating automobile title fraud, preventing chop shop related thefts, and inspecting exports for stolen vehicles.  With Tennessee and Vermont’s recent addition, the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System, or NMVTIS, will finally hit a long-awaited goal of 99 percent completion 2021 when Kansas and Washington, D.C. enter the system.

About The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System

The motor vehicle department employees in most 51 jurisdictions can compare their records against the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System database.  The advantages become evident upon the system’s activation when the first title errors come through for many jurisdictions.  This news is terrific for the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System as it’s one of Vinsmart’s top data providers.

National Motor Vehicle Title Information System addresses these key issues:

• Prevent the introduction or reintroduction of stolen motor vehicles into interstate commerce
• Protect states and consumers (individual and commercial) from fraud
• Reduce the use of stolen vehicles for illicit purposes, including the funding of criminal enterprises
• Provide consumers protection from unsafe vehicles


For Title Verification

State motor vehicle agencies have the options for title verification and data reporting requirements of the Anti Car Theft Act and its implementing regulations. It offers integrated solutions like an application solution that enables a state to merge NMVTIS title verification into the state’s titling application, creating a seamless online title process. Or a standalone option for a state to verify the information before the title gets issued in a standalone manner that does not require integration into the state’s title systems.

For Reporting State Data

An integrated solution offers, in addition to maintaining the ability to incorporate NMVTIS verification into the title applications, this solution also enables a state to update title data to NMVTIS online. A standalone option where a state reports data in a standalone batch upload does not require integration with state title systems.

The Benefits

The American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, or AAMVA, champions uniform registration, titling, and motor carrier programs through NMVTIS. This system allows participating states, now 51 in all, to instantly and reliably communicate to effortlessly verify the information on title issuances with the state’s electronic data that issued the title. Clint Thompson, chief of title services at the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, realized the program’s benefits from the very beginning. One of the most significant problems was the brands weren’t getting filled in on titles. This issue was not just entities that had their brands washed in other jurisdictions but also processing errors.

Texas Supplied The Blueprint For An NMVTIS Guide

Texas, in 2014 the NMVTIS put the system in place. Still, even before that, Thompson’s team started working on a guide to help county and TxDMV employees efficiently and adequately use the system.  Work on the guide began in 2013, and it is updated every quarter.  Typically, publications get provided, such as the Title Manual or Salvage and Nonrepairable Manual, but the NMVTIS system’s implementation ultimately requires several changes to the publications.  Instead of just regularly updating those manuals, it’s better to have a specific NMVTIS Guide.


Asking The Right Questions

Connecting to the NMVTIS database means adapting to a new process.  As their guide in creating the manual, Thompson’s team asked a series of questions:

• What information do the employees who are using our interface and processing these transactions need?
• How will these transactions be handled?
• What is the new process, and how does that affect the current process?

There is a user group that truly needs the information; they need a guide to help them navigate the system without calling the department for help.  The questions were narrowed down and worked through those procedural issues, and captured that in the guide.  Thompson has seen the manual help firsthand and shared it with other jurisdictions, including at the first National Motor Vehicle Title Information System State User’s Workshop in February.  It’s worthwhile for people to look at the NMVTIS system and see if they can implement it.  For jurisdictions that implement the system, the most crucial factor is to know who your audience is.  Ensure you write keeping that particular audience in mind, and the information coincides effortlessly with their process.

Vivienne Cameron, senior director at AAMVA, agrees with Thompson’s sentiments and suggests how other jurisdictions can take advantage of the Texas NMVTIS Guide.  Having a system like what Texas has created, the employee has a resource that clarifies instructions and an excellent example of the resources states need to develop and maintain.  One of the great things about the Texas guide is it’s updated frequently.

When Purchasing A Vehicle

Always remember to have a VINsmart report run on the vehicle before making any vehicle purchase.  A VINsmart report runs a complete history on the vehicle including whether it has ever been reported as stolen, has been involved in a major accident, or has been listed as a totaled vehicle.

VINsmart reports will also give you a history of every time the vehicle has been registered as well as a history of the mileage.  It reports any significant incidents related to the vehicle, such as being involved in a fire or flood.

When you are going to purchase a used vehicle, the best way to ensure you are making a good purchase is to know the vehicle’s complete history.


To get started with VINsmart, click here.

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