North Carolina Bonded Title

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What is a North Carolina bonded title?

A bonded title in North Carolina is a certificate of title with a surety bond attached. This surety bond is called a title bond. You can purchase this bond through a trusted surety provider like ZipBonds.

The bonded title allows you to claim ownership of your car and register, insure, and sell it as you please – all actions you can’t legally take without a valid car title.

When do you need an NC bonded title?

If you live in North Carolina and don’t have proof that you own your vehicle (the original title), you may need a bonded title. This situation can occur when:

  • A dealer doesn’t pass on the title when selling a car (“title jumping” is illegal in all states).
  • The title was incorrectly assigned to you.
  • The title was lost, stolen, or damaged before being registered in your name.

If you had the title registered in your name but lost it, you can apply for a duplicate certificate of title in North Carolina rather than applying for a bonded title.

Get Your North Carolina Title Bond:

Quick Takeaways

  • If you live in North Carolina and don’t have proof of vehicle ownership (the original title), you may need a bonded title.
  • A bonded title allows you to claim ownership of your car so you can register, insure, and sell it legally.
  • The bond protects the DMV and other parties (such as lienholders or previous owners) who may have a financial claim to your vehicle.
  • First, contact the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (NCDMV) to ensure you’re eligible for a bonded title, and then follow the process outlined below to apply.

How does a bonded title work?

When you apply for and receive a bonded title, you promise that you are the vehicle’s owner. The bond protects the DMV and other parties (such as lienholders or previous owners) who may have a financial claim in your car.

If someone says that you aren’t the actual owner and files a claim on your surety bond, your surety will investigate the situation to determine who is telling the truth. If the claimant is correct, your surety will cover the costs to settle the claim for you (if you don’t or can’t settle it at the time). You must repay your surety in full.

Your bonded title must remain active for three years. Then you can request a clean title with your DMV.

How to Get a Bonded Title in North Carolina

Before you begin NC’s bonded title process, ensure you’re eligible by contacting the DMV directly. Once you know that you qualify, follow the process below – based on the steps provided by the NCDMV.

1. Gather all required documents.

Here’s a rundown of all the documents you will need to apply for a bonded title in North Carolina:

  • Odometer reading (if your car is less than 10 years old)
  • Indemnity bond (title bond)
  • Inspector’s report (from the License & Theft Bureau Inspector)
  • Affidavit of Facts to Accompany Indemnity Bond
  • Title application

2. Get your vehicle inspected.

An inspector from N.C. Division of Motor Vehicle’s License & Theft Bureau must inspect your vehicle. Ensure you have your Title Application and Affidavit of Facts for your inspection.

If your vehicle is deemed “inoperable,” you’ll receive an “Inoperable Title” rather than a bonded title.

3. Get your vehicle appraised.

Before you can purchase your bond in the next step, you need to know its value. Visit the nearest NCDMV license plate agency or call the NCDMV Customer Contact Center (919-715-7000) to request an appraisal.

4. Purchase a title (“indemnity”) bond.

Your indemnity bond must be 1.5 times the current value of your vehicle. That means if your vehicle is worth $4,000, you will need a $6,000 bond. These bonds often cost only $100 to purchase and are instantly issued. The bond must remain active for three years.

5. Pass an emissions inspection.

Your vehicle must pass an emissions inspection at an authorized inspection station. Afterward, your license plate may be issued.

6. Submit your complete application and pay fees and taxes.

You can submit your completed application, along with applicable taxes and fees, to your local DMV. Once your application is reviewed and approved, you will receive your bonded certificate of title.

How much does a title bond cost in North Carolina?

North Carolina title bonds are quickly issued, typically cost around $100, and have a 3-year bond period. After the bond expires, there is no requirement for the bond. You will be eligible for a standard certificate of title.

Get Your North Carolina Bonded Title

The experts at ZipBonds can help you obtain the bond you need. To connect with one of our team members, please give us a call at 888-435-4191 or email us at We’ll walk you through the process for title bonds to help you get bonded in a flash.



Founders Ryan Swalve and Zach Mefferd formed the vision for when they realized how overly complicated it was to help clients place surety. The frustration of being unable to incorporate the technology they’d used in other insurance-focused projects left them thinking “there has to be a better way.”

Fast forward a couple of years, and that better way is the impetus of everything we do at ZipBonds. We constantly look for innovative ways to improve the bonding process for our clients and agents. Our team comprises individuals who understand all angles of surety – for companies, agencies, and individuals. Incorporating everyone’s point of view to improve the process while simultaneously integrating cutting-edge technology is what sets our business apart.