The OBL was recently made aware of a provision in the transportation budget, HB 23, that could have far-reaching consequences. Passed earlier this year, the legislation includes language that would impact the process of handling liens on motor vehicles. Specifically, it mandates that lenders, upon receiving payment for a vehicle lien, must provide a written notice to the owner, asking whether they prefer a paper or electronic title. If the owner chooses a paper title, the lender is then responsible for obtaining and providing it to the owner at no cost.
This change diverges significantly from the current practice, where lenders typically issue a lien release letter, and vehicle owners have the option to obtain a paper title from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles themselves, if desired.
The primary issue with this change lies in the burden it places on lenders. Under the new process, lenders would be required to go through the additional steps of determining the owner's preference, acquiring the necessary paperwork, and providing a paper title at their own expense. This would not only increase administrative work for financial institutions but also potentially incur costs that could affect their operations.
The OBL is currently working with key members of the legislature to address this issue and will provide members with an update as there is new information. If you would like to provide feedback or comments on this issue, please contact Don Boyd or Shannon Strow.