Frequently Asked Questions

More Questions? Contact Us!

Customer Service
Check out the FAQs for the answers to our most common Customer Service questions including refunds.

For Customer Service inquiries, please send an email to:
customerservice@instavin.com
Your inquiry is important to us & we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Dealers
Join the instaVIN® Dealer program & get Special Dealer Pricing today!
dealers@instavin.com

Sales
For Dealer, Affiliate or Reseller inquiries please contact the instaVIN® Sales team:
sales@instavin.com
Phone: 858.454.6782 ext. 100

Address
instaVIN®
10755 Scripps Poway Parkway #703
San Diego, CA 92131

Office Hours: 9am-5pm PST / M-F
Data
  • Where does your vehicle data come from?
  • What is NMVTIS? 
  • Why did I receive the message ‘No Data Available’?
  • What states are not participating with NMVTIS?
  • Does instaVIN® have vehicle history reports for Classic Cars?
  • Does instaVIN® have vehicle history reports for Motorcycles & RVs?
  • Are instaVIN® reports available in Canada or other international countries for exported vehicles?
  • Are all accidents included on instaVIN® reports?
  • Is current or past owner information included on instaVIN® reports?
  • How can inaccurate data on a History Report be updated?

  • Website
  • How does your online service work?
  • Is www.instaVIN.com a secure site?

  • Reports
  • How do I access my previously run reports?
  • How long can I access reports that I have purchased?
  • How can I share my instaVIN® History Reports?
  • If I purchased multiple reports at one time, where can I view my remaining credits?
  • Will my report credits expire?
  • What is the difference between a Salvage & VIN Check Report & a Vehicle History & Title Report?
  • What is the difference between Junk/Salvage/Total Loss & Title & Brand information?
  • Can I upgrade from a Salvage & VIN Check Report to a Vehicle History & Title Report?
  • Does instaVIN® provide accident data on the Vehicle History & Title Report?
  • Are owner names or lien holder information displayed on the Vehicle History & Title Report?
  • Why is the mileage showing as ‘exempt’ on my report?
  • Will your reports tell me if a vehicle has been stolen?
  • Will your report tell me if a vehicle has an open lien or loan?
  • What other types of information are on an instaVIN® Vehicle History & Title Report?

  • My Account / Billing
  • What qualifies for a refund?
  • Why is my credit card showing a charge for a report that I did not receive?
  • Is this a one-time charge?
  • Does instaVIN® have unlimited or bundle plans?
  • Does instaVIN® offer Direct Billing?
  • How do I update/change my billing & personal information?
  • How do I change my password?
  • How do I reset my password?
  • How do I cancel my account?
  • Why don’t you have a buy-back guarantee?

  • Bill of Sale Documentation Service
  • Is Bill of Sale a service for buyers or sellers?
  • What exactly do I get with the Bill of Sale Documentation Service?
  • How long can I access my Bill of Sale documents after purchase?

  • NMVTIS FAQ's
  • What is the purpose of NMVTIS?
  • Who operates & manages NMVTIS?
  • How much will it cost to obtain NMVTIS information on a vehicle?
  • What kind of information will I receive in a NVMTIS vehicle history report?
  • What types of vehicles are included in NMVTIS?
  • How current is the information in NMVTIS?
  • How is information accessed through NMVTIS different from private vendors who offer this information as well?
  • Where can I get detailed vehicle information from a state?
  • If I believe there is a discrepancy in the information provided in a NMVTIS vehicle record, how do I resolve the issue?
  • If I purchase a vehicle, is my personal information included & shared in NMVTIS?
  • Why aren't all states participating in NMVTIS? Why isn't my state participating?
  • I requested vehicle information through NMVTIS & no Brand /odometer/title information was returned. Why?


  • Data

    Where does your vehicle data come from?

    Vehicle history information comes from many sources including records on file from NMVTIS, state DMV, police records, fire & insurance records, data aggregators as well as many other proprietary sources.
     
    The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) is a database administered by the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA) & overseen by the US Department of Justice. NMVTIS is the only vehicle history database in the nation in to which all states, insurance carriers, & junk salvage yards are required by federal law to report their data.


    What is NMVTIS? 

    The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) was created through the Federal Anti-Car Theft Act of 1992, to help protect consumers from fraud & unsafe vehicles & to keep stolen vehicles from being resold. NMVTIS is a database administered by the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA) & overseen by the US Department of Justice. NMVTIS is the only vehicle history database in the nation in to which all states, insurance carriers, & junk salvage yards are required by federal law to report their data.

    Through NMVTIS, MobileTrac is an authorized providerand reseller of vehicle Title & Brand data. With access to NMVTIS, MobileTrac works with underwriters, warranty & insurance companies, financers, dealers, & auction houses to provide the most comprehensive Junk/Salvage/Total Loss, Odometer, Title & Brand data available in the industry. NMVTIS data also includes descriptive labels called ‘Brands’ which identity a vehicle’s current or prior condition such as ‘salvage’ or ‘flood’ which convey additional information concerning the value of the vehicle, & help protect consumers from unknowingly buying a damaged vehicle. MobileTrac includes 61 of these Brands on the Vehicle History Reports.


    Why did I receive the message ‘No Data Available’?

    You did not receive a report, & will not be charged, because instaVIN® does not have enough information for the VIN you requested. You may see an authorization on your credit card for the amount of the report. This is an authorization only & will be released by instaVIN® within 24 hours. Hold times may vary by individual banks.
    Possible reasons for this response are:
  • Vehicle is titled in a non-participating state from NMVTIS which includes Washington DC, HI, KS, MI, MS, OR, RI, VT
  • Vehicle is not titled
  • Incorrect or fabricated VIN


  • What states are not participating with NMVTIS?

    Currently all 50 states are involved with NMVTIS at various levels of participation, representing nearly 90 percent of vehicles on the road. (View NMVTIS participation map.) Some states participate fully with NMVTIS (provide data to the system as well as make title inquiries before issuing new titles.) Other states provide data only or are developing the capacity to participate fully with NMVTIS. The following state are still in development, but are expected to be in accordance in the near future: Washington DC, HI, KS, MI, MS, OR, RI, VT. 


    Does instaVIN® have vehicle history reports for Classic Cars?

    instaVIN® does provide reports on Classic Cars (vehicles older than 1981 with fewer than 17 character VINs) by means of NMVTIS & other data sources, however each state DMV varies as to how far back their vehicle records extend. NMVTIS provides the current state of title & last date for Classic Cars, additional title events are included where available. If instaVIN® is unable to produce any data on a Classic Car, an alert message appears & you will not be charged for a report. 


    Does instaVIN® have vehicle history reports for Motorcycles, Powerspoerts, Heavy Trucks, Motorhomes & RVs?

    Unlike other major vehicle history services, MobileTrac data is also available for motorcycles, heavy (commercial) trucks & buses, powersports & recreational vehicles (RVs). Title & salvage/junk/total loss data is available for motorhomes & salvage/junk/total loss data is available for trailers, campers, toy boxes, etc.


    Are instaVIN® reports available in Canada or other international countries for exported vehicles?

    Yes, instaVIN® reports can be run from any country for any qualifying vehicles that were exported from the Untied States and titled within the last 5 years, in participating NMVTIS states. Cars that were NEVER titled in the United States will have no records available. You can run a free record check from the "Order Page" to determine if records are available for the vehicle in question.


    Are all accidents included on instaVIN® reports?

    instaVIN® provides accident information from multiple sources including DMVs in certain states, NMVTIS participating states & other independent sources. Not all accidents are reported to instaVIN. Other report providers may show accident information that does not appear on instaVIN® report. Typically, the most severe incidents will result in an Insurance Total Loss record & /or DMV Salvage title, & are available in instaVIN® reports when NMVTIS reports the information to instaVIN.


    Is current or past owner or any other personal information included on instaVIN® reports?

    No provider of Vehicle History Reports, including instaVIN, may display owner’s names or any other personal information as it is against federal privacy laws. As stated on the web site & order pages, instaVIN® provides up-to-date information on current title events & historical title events including date, state & mileage at time of title & registration as it relates to the vehicle. In addition, 61 possible Brand events are checked against the government database. This includes possible junk, salvage or insurance total loss. Additional information regarding vehicle specifications, accident & odometer records are also checked. Samples of history reports are easily viewed on the site to help demonstrate the format & types of data points displayed in the instaVIN® report.


    How can inaccurate data on a History Report be updated?

    instaVIN® receives history reports from many data sources & sometimes specific records have not been updated or are inaccurate. At this time, instaVIN® provides data reports but is not able to amend them. Each report includes state DMV contact info so that you may contact data providers directly. Your feedback is always welcome at customerservice@instavin.com.


    Website

    How does your online service work? 

    It’s easy to use instaVIN. Order reports at www.instaVIN.com & begin running Vehicle History Reports online. Either enter a VIN number in the order page & follow the prompts or create your account from the new user pull down menu. An account will be established so when you return for additional reports you can simply log in & enter your VIN number. Under ‘My Account’ you may view, print, save & link to your reports, change your personal information or password, & view your billing history. There are other utilities available online to assist in the buying & selling of vehicles such as Bill of Sale (just $8.99).


    Is www.instaVIN.com a secure site?

    Protecting your order information is important to us & we make every effort to protect your online order information by using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology.  instaVIN® never stores credit card information. You can access our Privacy Policy to read more about the security of our site by visiting https://www.instavin.com/privacy.php.


    Reports

    How do I access my previously run reports?

    To access your reports, log into www.instaVIN.com with your email address & password (a temporary one was emailed to you).  Click the blue button 'Past Reports' & then click on the VIN to access the report.  To print the report, click the 'Print' button in the top left corner.  A PDF version of the report will come up making it easy to print, save, or send your report. You can access your reports at www.instaVIN.com for 60 days from the time of purchase. After that, you will need to purchase a new report to access the data.


    How long can I access reports that I have purchased?

    Your reports are available at www.instaVIN.com for 60 days from the time of purchase. To access your reports, click the blue button 'Past Reports' from the ‘My Account’ section.


    How can I share my instaVIN® History Reports?

    You can share your reports by clicking the 'Print Report' button in the top left corner of the report. A PDF version of the report will come up making it easy to print, save, or send your report. You can also share your report by clicking ‘Link’ in the top left corner of the report. This will give you a link that you can copy & then paste.


    If I purchased multiple reports at one time, where can I view my remaining credits?

    You can view your report credits in the ‘My Account’ section of www.instaVIN.com under ‘Billing History’. Credits appear at the top of this page. For example, if you purchased the Buy 2 Get 1 Free promotion, you will receive the first report instantly upon purchase & will have remaining credits for two Vehicle History & Title Reports.


    Will my report credits expire?

    No, report credits do not have an expiration or must-use-by date.


    What is the difference between a Salvage & VIN Check Report & a Vehicle History & Title Report?

    Salvage & VIN Check Reports cost $2.99 & include:
  • Salvage & related Title information
  • Access to over 40 million Junk, Salvage & Total Loss Records
  • Vehicle Specifications
  • Glossary of Brand Definitions

  • Vehicle History & Title Reports cost $6.99 & include:
  • Salvage & related Title information
  • Access to over 40 million Junk, Salvage & Total Loss Records
  • Vehicle Specifications
  • Glossary of Brand Definitions

  • Plus Critical Title information:
  • Current state of Title & last Title date
  • Additional historical Title information
  • Title Brand Problems
  • Odometer Information
  • Accident information where available*

  • *instaVIN® provides accident information from multiple sources including DMVs in certain states, NMVTIS participating states & other independent sources. Not all accidents are reported to instaVIN. Other report providers may show accident information that does not appear on instaVIN® reports. Typically, the most severe incidents will result in an Insurance Total Loss record & /or DMV Salvage title, & are available in instaVIN® reports when NMVTIS reports the information to instaVIN.


    What is the difference between Junk/Salvage/Insurance Total Loss & Title & Brand information?

    Junk / Salvage / Insurance Total Loss is a condition reported from junk yards, salvage yards & insurance companies. Junk is the most severe & means that the vehicle is only fit for parts. Salvage means that it would cost more to repair the vehicle than it is worth. & Total Loss means that an insurance company decided to pay out rather than have the vehicle repaired.

    Title & Brand information comes from State Departments of Motor Vehicles (DMV). A DMV determines if the vehicle’s title should be stamped with ‘Brands’ which identity a vehicle’s current or prior condition such as ‘salvage’ or ‘flood’. These Brands convey additional information concerning the value of the vehicle, & help protect consumers from unknowingly buying a damaged vehicle. MobileTrac includes a 61 Brand check on the Vehicle History & Title Report.


    Can I upgrade from a Salvage & VIN Check Report to a Vehicle History & Title Report?

    instaVIN® provides real-time data on each & every report, meaning you get up-to-the-minute data every time. We cannot ‘upgrade’ a report because we must query a new set of data for each request.


    Does instaVIN® provide accident data on the Vehicle History & Title Report?

    instaVIN® provides accident information from multiple sources including DMVs in certain states, NMVTIS participating states & other independent sources. Not all accidents are reported to instaVIN. Other report providers may show accident information that does not appear on instaVIN® reports. Typically, the most severe incidents will result in an Insurance Total Loss record & /or DMV Salvage title, & are available in instaVIN® reports when NMVTIS reports the information to instaVIN.


    Are owner names or lien holder information displayed on the Vehicle History & Title Report?

    Our Vehicle History & Title Reports do not display owner names or lien holder information as it is against our data suppliers' privacy policies & is against the law in many states. When reported to instaVIN, the instaVIN® Vehicle History & Title reports also show “open”, or current lien information, showing that a vehicle is reported to have have a lien (loan), along with the lender’s name.


    Why is the mileage showing as ‘exempt’ on my report?

    The mileage may show as ‘exempt’ because DMVs are not required to report mileage to NMVTIS for vehicles more than 10 years old.


    Will your report tell me if a vehicle has been stolen?

    Yes, instaVIN® reports include Salvage Brand information from NMVTIS, which includes stolen vehicles, & other data sources showing reported current & historical theft information. . You can also check NICB.org, a free site that has stolen vehicle records.


    Will your report tell me if a vehicle has an open lien or loan?

    Yes, when reported, instaVIN® Vehicle History & Title Reports show open lien or loan information, meaning that a loan against the vehicle may be present.

    What other types of information are on an instaVIN® Vehicle History & Title Report?

    instaVIN® Vehicle History & Title Reports also have accident information from certain locations, data showing if the vehicle has been presented for export, if it’s been impounded, & if it has been made available for sale online. This information can include odometer information, photos & locations.

    My Account / Billing

    What qualifies for a refund?

    instaVIN® stands behind the data provided & we provide refunds in the case of any error in title data not correct as evidenced by a copy or proof of such data error from a state title document. If you can provide such evidence of error by email (customerservice@instavin.com) or fax (858.847.0434), we will be able to process a full refund. We do not provide refunds for missing records or omissions of current records not available to instaVIN, such as previous owner information, recent odometer readings, accident records, or reports or title events from non participating NMVTIS states.


    Why is my credit card showing a charge for a report that I did not receive?

    If you ordered a report for a VIN for which no data was available you may see an authorization on your credit card for the amount of the report you requested, $2.99 for a Salvage & VIN Check Report or $6.99 for a Vehicle History & Title Report. This is an authorization only & will be released by instaVIN® within 24 hours. Hold times may vary by individual banks.


    Is this a one-time charge?

    Please be assured that the charge for a report, $6.99 for the Vehicle History & Title Report or $2.99 for a Salvage & VIN Check Report, is a one-time charge.  www.instaVIN.com is a secure site, there are no monthly automatic charges or fees. You are only charged per report that you run & you can access past reports at www.instaVIN.com for 60 days after date of purchase for free.  Dealers & other commercial users can pre-pay for vehicle history reports & use them as they need them. Report credits never expire.


    Does instaVIN® have unlimited or bundle plans?

    Prepaid bundle pricing is available for dealers for 15, 50, 100, 200 or 300 reports. The price per report is reduced with greater quantities. Please call the instaVIN® Sales Team at 888.984.6782 if you would like to further discuss this opportunity.


    Does instaVIN® offer direct billing?

    instaVIN® currently does not offer direct billing but uses a convenient online ordering process that is billed to the credit card on file. Dealers & other commercial users can pre-pay for vehicle history reports & use them as they need them. Report credits never expire.


    How do I update/change my billing & personal information?

    Go to the ‘My Account’ section of www.instaVIN.com under ‘Edit Profile’ to change your billing information & personal information.

     

    How do I change my password?

    Go to the ‘My Account’ section of www.instaVIN.com under ‘Edit Profile’ to change your password. You may also contact customer service if you have any difficulties.


    How do I reset my password?

    Go to www.instaVIN.com & click ‘Login’ in the top right corner. Enter your email address & click ‘Reset Lost Password’. An email will be sent to you with a link to change your password.


    How do I cancel my account?

    Accounts may be cancelled by you at any time from the ‘My Account’ section of the website at www.instavin.com, under ‘Edit Profile’, then ‘Cancel My Account’. Your Account will be cancelled within twenty-four (24) hours. 


    Why don’t you have a buy-back guarantee?

    Research has shown that the buy-back guarantee offered by many of instaVIN’s competitors is a thin veiled marketing technique that has many caveats & clauses in the legal disclaimer. Very few cars ever qualify to be bought back. No data from any supplier is 100% guaranteed to reflect the full history of a car since many incidents that happen to a car are never reported to any one data supplier. instaVIN® encourages customers to use vehicle history reports as one avenue to explore the reported history of a vehicle & encourages dealers & consumers to also get a full vehicle inspection as another aspect of due diligence.


    Bill of Sale Documentation Service

    Is Bill of Sale a service for buyers or sellers?

    Whether you are buying or selling a vehicle, instaVIN’s Bill of Sale service helps to protect your transaction.


    What exactly do I get with the Bill of Sale Documentation Service?

    Bill of Sale: Document your transaction, complete our comprehensive Sale Agreement with Sold As-Is & Warranty clauses.

    State Authorized DMV Forms for Bill of Sale & Title Transfer: Complete state specific, required documentation. If the sale is across state lines, forms for each state are provided.


    How long can I access my Bill of Sale documents after purchase?

    Your Bill of Sale documents are available at www.instaVIN.com for 30 days from the time of purchase. To access your documents, simply click the ‘Bill of Sale’ tab.


    NMVTIS FAQs

    What is the purpose of NMVTIS?

    To learn more about The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS), visit the NMVTIS vehiclehistory.gov website.

    NMVTIS was created to:

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

    Who operates & manages NMVTIS?

    The U.S. Department of Justice is responsible for oversight of the implementation & operation of NMVTIS, & works in partnership with the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA). AAMVA has been the operator since 1992. To learn more about NMVTIS visit the vehiclehistory.gov website. To learn more about AAMVA contact:

    American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators
    4301 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 400
    Arlington, Virginia 22203
    (703) 522-4200
    www.aamva.org


    How much will it cost to obtain NMVTIS information on a vehicle?

    Cost for NVMTIS vehicle history reports vary & are determined by individual service providers. The Anti-Car Theft Act requires that the system be funded through user fees & not dependent on federal funds. For this reason, NMVTIS has been designed as a fee-for-service system. instaVIN® reports start as low as $2.99!


    What kind of information will I receive in a NVMTIS vehicle history report?

    NMVTIS records provide:

    • Current & previous state of title data
    • Title issue date
    • Latest odometer data
    • Theft history data (if any)
    • Any Brand assigned to a vehicle & date applied
    • Salvage history, including designations as a “total loss” (if any)

    Read the NMVTIS Consumer Access Product Disclaimer, which describes what is & is not included in NMVTIS reports. instaVIN® vehicle history reports provide NMVTIS information as well as data from other sources.


    What types of vehicles are included in NMVTIS?

    NMVTIS includes information on automobiles, buses, trucks, motorcycles, recreational vehicles, motor homes, & tractors. NMVTIS may not currently include commercial vehicles if those vehicles are not included in a state's primary database for title records (in some states, those vehicles are managed by a separate agency), although these records may be added at a later time.


    How current is the information in NMVTIS?

    Currently the data provided to NMVTIS by states is provided in a variety of time frames; while some report & update NVMTIS data in “real-time” (as title transactions occur) others send updates less frequently, such as once every 24 hours or within a period of days.


    How is the information accessed through NMVTIS different from private vendors who provide this information as well?

    NMVTIS information made available to consumers is from state motor vehicle agency records & entire sectors (e.g., insurance, auto recyclers/junk/salvage, etc.) addressed by the Anti-Car Theft Act. As opposed to purchasing information from specific businesses or companies, entities are required to provide specific information to NMVTIS in a specific format. NMVTIS is intended to serve as a reliable source of title & Brand history for automobiles, which helps consumers make informed decisions before purchasing a used vehicle. However, there are certain pieces of vehicle history data that NMVTIS does not contain; for example, a vehicle's repair history. FOr moredetials about NMVTIS visit the vehiclehistory.gov website.

    Before making a decision to purchase a vehicle, consumers may wish to obtain an independent vehicle inspection & consult other available information resources that provide additional vehicle history data.


    Where can I get detailed vehicle information from a state?

    To request a complete copy of a specific state vehicle title record, you can contact the current state motor vehicle titling agency. Click here to find more information on state motor vehicle agency processes for obtaining state records.


    If I believe there is a discrepancy in the information provided in a NMVTIS vehicle record, how do I go about resolving the issue?

    Contact the service provider directly for questions about your vehicle history report. Customer support is available on each service providers' website.


    If I purchase a vehicle, is my personal information included & shared in NMVTIS?

    No personal identifying information will be made available to individual consumers via NMVTIS. However, information contained within NMVTIS will include limited personal identifying information specifically for law enforcement / investigative, regulatory, & related purposes. While no personal identifying information will be made available to individual consumers, states can permit access to their records that is consistent with the requirements of federal statutes such as the Drivers Privacy Protection Act & any relevant state statutes. Visit the vehiclehistory.gov, NMVTIS Privacy Policy page to read more.


    Why aren't all states participating in NMVTIS? Why isn't my state participating?

    Currently all states are involved with NMVTIS at various levels of participation. View NMVTIS participation map. Some states participate fully with NMVTIS (provide data to the system as well as make title inquiries before issuing new titles.) Other states provide data only or are developing the capacity to participate fully with NMVTIS. Non-participating states have offered different reasons for not providing data to the system & not making inquiries of NMVTIS, however consumers are encouraged to seek responses to these questions from the states directly.

    In January 2009, the Department of Justice issued clear & detailed guidance for states on how to participate in NMVTIS & comply with the Anti-Car Theft Act. All states must be fully participating as required by the Act & its regulations by January 1, 2010. The Department of Justice continues to work collaboratively with states to help bring them into full compliance. View the Notice Regarding State Compliance.


    I requested vehicle information through NMVTIS & (no Brand /odometer/title information was returned. Why?

    It is likely in this case that no Brand , odometer, or title information for that vehicle has been reported by participating states. Contact customer service for any additional questions or further explanation. Although NMVTIS includes 88 percent of the U.S. vehicle population, it is expected that this type of response may occur until all states are participating.

    To understand what information will be included in an NMVTIS Vehicle History Report or learn more about the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System, please visit the NMVTIS vehiclehistory.gov main site or read the NMVTIS Consumer Access Product Disclaimer.