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Importing a car from the US to Canada


TNan

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I searched high and low for an answer to the following question and I found no such answer. I have a great opportunity to pick up a 73 INKA SHELL in great condition, however, the owner does not have a title for the car that is required to clear customs. My current car came from Wisconsin and I brought back to Toronto without any problems BUT thats because I had all the required paperwork. My question: if I'm bringing back a shell, do I still require a title for it? Or does customs deem it as a salvage?  

 

To my american faq'ers, is it difficult/expensive to register a new title for a car when all you have is a VIN number?

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You *should* be able to import it as auto parts without the title. I imported my '70 as a shell and they were only worried about the price. There was none of the typical paperwork when importing a running car. Mind you, this was about 6 years ago so caveat emptor. 

70 M2 2.5L 

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52 minutes ago, TNan said:

I searched high and low for an answer to the following question and I found no such answer. I have a great opportunity to pick up a 73 INKA SHELL in great condition, however, the owner does not have a title for the car that is required to clear customs. My current car came from Wisconsin and I brought back to Toronto without any problems BUT thats because I had all the required paperwork. My question: if I'm bringing back a shell, do I still require a title for it? Or does customs deem it as a salvage?  

 

To my american faq'ers, is it difficult/expensive to register a new title for a car when all you have is a VIN number?

My experience has been that unless you have title  for the car you are brining into Canada you will not be able to register it. If all that you have is a bill of sale, the best you can hope for is to track the car or use it as a parts car. 

 

I know each state has a different set of rules when dealing with the sale of non titled cars but the stumbling block is Canada Customs, so  that "reggy" is pretty important.

Edited by joysterm
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3 hours ago, kris said:

You *should* be able to import it as auto parts without the title. I imported my '70 as a shell and they were only worried about the price. There was none of the typical paperwork when importing a running car. Mind you, this was about 6 years ago so caveat emptor. 

...did you end up registering it as a driver or was it only used for for parts?? I'm hoping to restore it as a daily driver - so i figure things may get dicey when I want to plate it. 

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3 hours ago, joysterm said:

My experience has been that unless you have title  for the car you are brining into Canada you will not be able to register it. If all that you have is a bill of sale, the best you can hope for is to track the car or use it as a parts car. 

 

I know each state has a different set of rules when dealing with the sale of non titled cars but the stumbling block is Canada Customs, so  that "reggy" is pretty important.

Ok thanks, thats what I figure.  I'm trying to press the owner to seek at a title - but it seems like its not happening.  I was hoping to restore it and put plates on it and use it as a daily driver.

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I should have been clear in my post...I had a title. they just didn't care about it at the border as they saw the shell as parts.  It's more of an issue of what you need at the license office.

 

My car is registered and on the road.

70 M2 2.5L 

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I just got one from California.  I think what you will get is a bunch of grief when you register it.  They will get you for GST/PST, and by the way you pay it on the exchange price.  It may be a loophole, you can say that it was salvaged locally without any title.  Who knows if the Canadian registry is linked to the US one.  I would think not.  The only problem would be if you get pulled over in the US, they run the vin and and there was a lein against the car, and it would come back as registered to someone else. You would be in a world of shit.  

 

IMHO to file the paperwork with border buddies is only about $250, and the GST PST which is 13%.  For the headaches and the future driving capabilities pay now or pay a lot later.  

"Goosed" 1975 BMW 2002

 

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4 minutes ago, TNan said:

Ok thanks, thats what I figure.  I'm trying to press the owner to seek at a title - but it seems like its not happening.  I was hoping to restore it and put plates on it and use it as a daily driver.

You may try to track down the title on your  own. As I mentioned some states treat non titled vehicle differently than other. Some are differently stricter when it comes to tracking down titles. Whether  a bill of sale helps this process, I am not sure  as I have no experience dealing with this type of issue. That said I would suggest  you can  reach out to he appropriate state and provincial authority to get a sense if this is even  feasible. I am sure someone on the FAQ board can shed more light on this.

 

Good luck with this, I look forward to see how this turns out.

 

Mike

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37 minutes ago, Dudeland said:

I just got one from California.  I think what you will get is a bunch of grief when you register it.  They will get you for GST/PST, and by the way you pay it on the exchange price.  It may be a loophole, you can say that it was salvaged locally without any title.  Who knows if the Canadian registry is linked to the US one.  I would think not.  The only problem would be if you get pulled over in the US, they run the vin and and there was a lein against the car, and it would come back as registered to someone else. You would be in a world of shit.  

 

IMHO to file the paperwork with border buddies is only about $250, and the GST PST which is 13%.  For the headaches and the future driving capabilities pay now or pay a lot later.  

I actually picked up my current 02 from Wisconsin and trailered it back. I had all the proper paperwork and so crossing the border and registering the car here in Toronto went without a hitch. The only difference now is getting a car without the title. I looked into the 'salvage title' but the real hiccup with that is, in order to register the car here in Toronto, I will have to go back to the state of origin of the purchase and apply to take the 'salvage title' off.  Just a real hassle.

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36 minutes ago, joysterm said:

You may try to track down the title on your  own. As I mentioned some states treat non titled vehicle differently than other. Some are differently stricter when it comes to tracking down titles. Whether  a bill of sale helps this process, I am not sure  as I have no experience dealing with this type of issue. That said I would suggest  you can  reach out to he appropriate state and provincial authority to get a sense if this is even  feasible. I am sure someone on the FAQ board can shed more light on this.

 

Good luck with this, I look forward to see how this turns out.

 

Mike

Hmmm?  Tracking down the title myself - that's worth a try. I'll be getting the car from New York state, so I guess I'll have to do some digging. Thanks!

 

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You might check to see if NY has a procedure for obtaining an "assembled from parts" title like we have here in OH.  Some years ago I bought a car that had been abandoned at a gas station--no title and my guess it came from KY--I took the bill of sale, a rubbing of the VIN plate and a bunch of car parts receipts from various junkyards for parts I had accumulated, and got an "assembled from parts" title, titling the car as its proper year of manufacture.  At the time we had a very sympathetic-to-the-hobby head of the county title office, but the procedure wasn't difficult at all.  

 

Hope NY has the same; if so, get receipts for some sheet metal, engine parts etc and have at it.

 

mike 

'69 Nevada sunroof-Wolfgang-bought new
'73 Sahara sunroof-Ludwig-since '78
'91 Brillantrot 318is sunroof-Georg Friederich 
Fiat Topolini (Benito & Luigi), Renault 4CVs (Anatole, Lucky Pierre, Brigette) & Kermit, the Bugeye Sprite

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