VINs on used vehicles sold to VT residents by out-of-state dealers must be verified. Details of who can verify and what the process looks like are below.
On March 4, NHADA notified our NH membership about a recent change in Vermont registration rules, which require VIN verification (published in stories within previous member emails). We have good news to report: Vermont has further clarified the rules to permit certain NH dealers to verify the VINs.
NHADA thanks the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles (VT DMV), in particular Captain Drew Bloom, and the NH Division of Motor Vehicles (NH DMV) and the NH Department of Safety for their assistance in educating the NHADA and its dealers on this matter.
VINs on used vehicles sold to VT residents by out-of-state dealers must be verified.
This includes any used vehicle 15 years or newer sold by an out-of-state dealer unless the vehicle has a previously issued Vermont title. A VT resident seeking to register such a used vehicle purchased from an out-of-state dealer is required to have a VIN verification prior to their registration being finalized. VINs on new vehicles do not require verification. The verification can occur before or after the sale. The car can still be registered by the customer without the verification, but they will receive a 60-day temporary registration. If the dealer delivers the paperwork instead of the customer, VT will return the paperwork with a letter seeking the VIN verification.
Who can verify the VINs?
According to the VT DMV, at this point anyone authorized to conduct VIN verification in NH will be acceptable for their process. This would include any law enforcement officials, DMV staff or anyone else authorized and trained by NH to do them. The good news is that NH rules already authorize licensed NH dealers and inspection stations to complete a VIN verification form after a physical examination of the vehicle. (Rule Saf-C 1904.04)
NHADA would recommend that dealerships establish a written policy, which sets forth the business' internal VIN verification process, and which specifies how and when the VIN should be verified and by whom. NHADA recommends that only a select person or persons be charged with the verification process as failure to conduct the examination properly may result in stolen or salvaged vehicles being sold.
In addition, the VINs may be verified by any law enforcement officer (VT or out-of-state) or a state DMV official. If the VIN is not verified before the sale, the owner of the car must then get the VIN verified by local police, VT DMV, or VT state police within the 60 days after the temporary plate was issued.
What do I need to do to verify a VIN?
Conduct a visual inspection: According the VT DMV, dealers need to locate a VIN in a minimum of two locations. The public VIN and at least one other (the label on the driver's side, the parts label in the glove box, under the hood, etc.) If the dealer can't find two matching VINs, they need to contact law enforcement to do so.
Complete the paperwork: Dealers can fill in the VIN verification section on the VT Registration, Tax & Title Application in section (7) or they can fill out a Vermont DMV Identification Number statement, which is form TA-VT-10(d). Both are available on the VT DMV's website:
Finally, verifications done outside of Vermont must be accompanied by a letter of identification of the agent on official letterhead.
Am I mandated to verify the VIN when selling to a VT resident?
No, the selling dealer is not mandated to conduct the VIN verification. Nor do you have to have the VIN verified prior to the sale by an outside party (state police, DMV, etc.) However, having the VIN verified prior to — or at the time of — the sale would certainly be more convenient for your customer as they would avoid having to have the VIN verified at a later date.
The VT DMV has additional information on Vermont's VIN requirements here.