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How To Junk A Car In Florida

How To Junk A Car In Florida

Looking to junk your old, damaged, or unused car in Florida?

As a formerly licensed Florida car dealer, I’ve helped some customers junk a few vehicles over the years.

The process involves several key steps to ensure it’s done legally and safely.

In this comprehensive guide, you’ll learn the proper steps for junking a car in FL, including how to transfer ownership and notify the right state agencies.

Key Takeaways

  • Obtain a salvage title from the FL DMV before transferring ownership
  • Sell the junk car to a licensed salvage yard for cash payment
  • Cancel your car insurance policy once the car is transferred
  • Surrender license plates to avoid penalties and liability
  • Formally notify the Florida DMV that the car is now junked

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Step 1: Obtain a Salvage Title in Florida

The first step is to apply for a salvage title from the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). This is legally required in FL even if you intend to immediately junk the car afterward.

Website: Florida DMV Junk A Vehicle

I recommend either submitting the title transfer paperwork online via the FL DMV website or visiting your nearest FL DMV office in person. Be sure to bring:

  • Vehicle registration documents
  • Odometer reading
  • Proof of valid insurance
  • Driver’s license
  • Completed Application for Salvage Certificate form

This process verifies you legally own the car in order to junk and transfer it. It also accurately records the vehicle as “salvaged” for DMV records.

Step 2. Transfer Car Title to the Junkyard

Next, you need to officially sign over ownership by transferring the title to the salvage yard or junkyard[1]. This is usually done on-location when they take possession of the vehicle.

Make sure to thoroughly read and understand the title transfer paperwork before signing anything. Common documents may include:

  • Bill of Sale
  • Salvage Title with Assignee Section
  • Power of Attorney Forms

Also, don’t forget to get documentation from the junkyard showing transfer of ownership, which protects you against any future liability.

Step 3. Cancel Your Auto Insurance Coverage

With the car now legally belonging to the junkyard, you must cancel any existing car insurance on the vehicle[1]. This step is often missed, but you cannot have active insurance on a car you no longer own.

To cancel, contact your insurer with the following key details:

  • Policy number
  • Date the car was sold/transferred
  • Mileage recorded during sale
  • Salvage yard documentation

Failing to notify your insurer in Florida may result in fines or legal issues down the road. So don’t skip this!

Step 4. Surrender the License Plate

Some key tasks still remain after selling your junk car. One is to physically remove and surrender the vehicle license plate to the DMV[7]. This prevents you from being liable for any parking tickets, accidents, or criminal acts associated with your old plates.

There are a few options for surrendering license plates in Florida:

  • In-Person: Visit your nearest tax collector’s office or FL DMV office
  • By Mail: Remove plate and mail to Direct Mail & Title Services office with ownership transfer details
  • Note: If you already canceled your insurance prior to junking the car, you have 30 days to complete this step before facing driver’s license suspension.

Step 5. Notify the Florida DMV

The final requirement is to formally notify and update DMV records stating the car is now classified as junked[7]. This removes your legal ownership entirely.

Phone, mail, or visit your local FL DMV service center with:

  • Vehicle VIN
  • Transfer salvage documentation
  • Copy of license plate surrender receipt

Bond Title Transfers: When No Title Exists

You may encounter situations trying to junk cars where no valid title exists, making proof of ownership tricky. This happens occasionally after natural disasters or with inherited vehicles left sitting outdoors unpaid for long periods.

In these unique cases, Florida does provide a legal avenue called a bonded title” transfer process. It requires submitting extra documentation and typically takes 4-6 weeks to process fully with the FL DMV[10].

So while more inconvenient, you can still properly junk and dispose of a car without a title in Florida. Just expect some extra steps working directly with your local DMV office.

Top Salvage & Junkyards in Florida

I want to highlight some of the leading auto salvage yards and junk car services in Florida that simplify & expedite the vehicle disposal process:

Junk Cars FL Superior Cash For Junk Car Removal – Offers cash for junk vehicle purchases and free car removal statewide. Can sell cars without titles too.

Quarno’s Auto Salvage – Local junkyard serving Central FL that buys damaged/junk vehicles. Pickup/delivery and auto parts available.

CashForCars.com – Quick online junk car sales platform with free towing services in Florida.

Junk my Car – Cash payouts plus complimentary Florida junk car removal. Handles title transfers.

Peddle® – National car buying service that purchases junk/used vehicles directly then coordinates junking logistics.

Jrop – Florida-based junk car removal company focused specifically on environmentally-friendly cash-for-junk-car recycling programs.

And there are over 20+ more salvage yards and metal recycling centers accepting junk vehicles throughout the state of Florida.

Key Factors in the Florida Car Junking Process

To recap, below are some key details to keep in mind when junking a car in FL:

  • Salvage title must be obtained before selling to a junkyard
  • Insurance cancellation is required upon car transfer
  • Expect $50 – $200 for state title and transfer fees
  • Junking without a title takes 6+ weeks working with the DMV
  • Scrapping an unregistered vehicle is legally possible
  • Improper junking can risk heavy fines and penalties

Essentially if you closely follow the ownership transfer process and notify all the appropriate agencies in Florida, disposing of your junk car while upholding laws is straightforward. Just take it step-by-step!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here I cover additional common questions vehicle owners have around properly junking cars in Florida:

Do I have to inform the DMV if I junk my car in Florida?

Yes, you must directly notify the Florida DMV by phone, online, or in person once you officially transfer junk vehicle ownership. This updates your vehicle records and registration status.

How much cash can I get for junking my car in FL?

Payouts range widely based on vehicle model, weight, junkyard competition, and local scrap metal pricing – but expect between $100 to $1,500 for most cars. Luxury or rare vehicles can sometimes yield more. Always request quotes from multiple junkyards!

What penalties exist for improperly junking a car in Florida?

Potential legal and financial penalties for not following proper junk car protocols in FL include fines up to $1,000, criminal charges for abandoning vehicles, and suspension of your driver’s license.

Do FL junkyards legally buy cars without titles?

Yes! Many reputable salvage yards in Florida have license to purchase junk vehicles when current original titles are not available. But for top payout, always provide the title if you have possession.

Sources For this Article

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Steve Momot - Author

Steve Momot - Author

Steve, a seasoned expert in the automotive industry, formerly held a car dealer license in Florida. With extensive experience spanning across car trading and mechanical work, he founded Autohitch. His mission? To guide both buyers and sellers through the intricate maze of car purchasing, ensuring a seamless and informed experience. Outside of the automotive world, Steve has a passion for fishing and capturing the beauty of nature through photography.

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