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  • California DMV

    At the end of April (the day after I purchased the Studebaker) I paid a visit to my local AAA office to have the title transferred into my name. I have been a member for 24 years but have never entered the building.

    I not only had to pay the sale tax but had to pay the 2018/2019 registration. for 2017/2018 I was told that the vehicle was registered as a Non Op (non-operational) and if I wanted to drive it before May 25th I would need to pay for this year also. I stated that I was working on the vehicle and this would take time for me to make it "road worthy". So, I pay and I am off.

    I then get all of my paperwork rejected by the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) with the following reasons. (the best are last)
    1. Must pay for 2017/2018 registration
    2. Must have someone with direct knowledge that the vehicle was not in operation during the 2017/2018 period
    3. Must have DMV, California Highway Petrol (CHP), or a "Vehicle Verifier" verify the stated vehicle VIN number
    4. Must correct the vehicle manufacture - Studebaker (with a hand written question mark added)

    My questions:
    1. Its on a non-op, what do you mean pay??
    2. The only person that could answer this is the previous owner who is 3 hours away. (yah I could email the form I guess) Of course I could just pay (see line 1) and this become void - which I am guessing is their plan??
    3. Really, because the vehicle is too old for the federal vehicle identification system I have to get CHP involved? Even better - DMV states that only the CHP can verify. CHP wants me to bring the car to them, see non-op for reason why this is not good. CHP also says DMV can/does this.
    4. Wait wait what??? The California DMV does not know what a Studebaker is??? wow.

    My DMV appointment is Monday.
    DT Holder - Bakersfield CA, USA
    1950 Commander ("Resto-Mod" in progress)

  • #2
    Worst DMV in the world is in Calif


    • #3
      I just hold a title until it I have it ready for the road and then do the transfer. It is signed ready to go but I dont see any reason to pay the tax etc until I have to.

      A story about CA and money. I own my own company and had a sales rep in Northern CA for years. The guy never sold much, but I kept him on the website just in case something came out of his area. One day i get a letter from the CA dept of revenue. Mind you I live in Delaware and the company is a DE registered company. The letter said that I had to provide sales in CA that my rep generated over the last 5 years. I tossed it in the round bin and went on with my business. I get two more of them and filed them the same. Then one day I get a call from the CA Dept of Rev. saying that if I don't provide this information they will fine my company. I told them that the rep did not work for me any longer and that he did not sell anything to report. The guy said that I would need to provide a letter to that effect and remove the guy from my website. I provided the letter, but left him on the website and never heard anything more about it. I called the sales rep and told him the Dept of Rev. was looking for him and he said that CA was trying to squeeze any $$ out of anyone, especially if they could get it out of state.
      Last edited by Dan White; 05-10-2018, 03:09 PM.
      Dan White
      64 R1 GT
      64 R2 GT
      58 C Cab
      57 Broadmoor (Marvin)


      • #4
        CA...second ONLY to NY. People and Businesses leaving in DROVES...


        • #5
          Jerry Brown needs his train. Like the arbitrator at the DMV told me in a similar situation "Humor me, just pay.


          • #6
            Originally posted by 345 DeSoto View Post
            CA...second ONLY to NY. People and Businesses leaving in DROVES...
            If you can believe it, I was actually born in Los Angeles. That place is apparently also known as the "City of Angels" (yeah right!) My father relocated my family out of there barely a year after I was born to Palm Beach because, and I quote, "[i]t is impossible to raise a kid in this nutty town". Keep in mind he was a high-flying stockbroker who had major incentive to stay during this time!
            Jake Robinson Kaywell: Shoo-wops and doo-wops galore to the background of some fine Studes. I'm eager and ready to go!

            1962 GT Hawk - "Daisy-Mae" - she came dressed to kill in etherial green with a charming turquoise inside. I'm hopelessly in love!


            • #7
              Did you already pay for the registration? If not, good. Just ask for the title to be transferred. Then work on your car. I don't know if a loophole was "corrected" or not but at least it was the case that when a car was sold & it was in a "non-op" with the DMV, then no sales tax was collected & you just paid for the title transfer. one could wait 2 or 3 week, then get a registration & pay only for the tags, still no sales tax was collected. I did that a few times.

              I was told my 59 wagon would have to be inspected for the "vin" (yeah, I know it's a serial number & not a vin) but they call it that now, even though I showed registrations from 1979 in California. I told them the car wasn't being operated on & the reply was to tow it to the AAA office & they would verify it. That changed too & then I was told the same as you, that the CHP or the DMV office would have to verify. I still haven't done that. When I'm ready I'll go to the Arizona MVD, show them the paperwork I have & get a title. Every transaction I've done here in the past year has been so easy it makes me wonder if it was really legal since Calif. DMV puts you through so much crap. And to top it off the people are actually nice to you too! California sent me a renewal for my 60 convertible. Somewhere around $165 bucks whereas here it will run me less than $25. Is it really any wonder why people are moving out of there?
              59 Lark wagon, now V-8, H.D. auto!
              60 Lark convertible V-8 auto
              61 Champ 1/2 ton 4 speed
              62 Champ 3/4 ton 5 speed o/drive
              62 Champ 3/4 ton auto
              62 Daytona convertible V-8 4 speed & 62 Cruiser, auto.
              63 G.T. Hawk R-2,4 speed
              63 Avanti (2) R-1 auto
              64 Zip Van
              66 Daytona Sport Sedan(327)V-8 4 speed
              66 Cruiser V-8 auto


              • #8
                Did you buy the car from an other state? Usually the only reason they ask for a VIN verification is if the vehicle came from out of state or if it has not been registered in a while and is no longer in their system. If the "non op" is from California and current this should not be nessisary.

                Yes the DMV, CHP and AAA can do a vin verification. Unless they changed it a cop of sheriff can too, just have them fill out (sign) the VIN verification form.

                If it's on "non op" and you continue it you shouldn't need to pay registration for 2017-18. Since they assume you will be moving the car, they want to be sure you don't drive or tow it. A trailer is ok. That's why the "statement of fact" about its opperation on the road. You can get a permit to opperate on the road for a given day though. Otherwise if you put it on the street at any time its on "non op" you're on the hook for fees for the year. (if you get caught)

                We bought two Studes from the original owner a couple years ago. The DMV person had never heard of a Studebaker, not surprising since Studebaker went out of business 30 years before they were born. They didn't have a problem with the 1961 pink slip, but nobody in the office knew what to do with the 1953 one. they had to call Sacramento.


                • #9
                  I just hope that the Former Owner did not Park the Car on the Street, Get a Ticket of any kind or get caught DRIVING it during the Non-Op Period, THAT would cause all this nonsense, but it SHOULD be on HIM not You!
                  Second Generation Stude Driver,
                  Proud '54 Starliner Owner


                  • #10
                    Somewhere I read on a Studebaker forum that there was a lady in CA that was good in straightening out title problems on Studebakers.
                    Does anyone have her contact info?


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by rkapteyn View Post
                      Somewhere I read on a Studebaker forum that there was a lady in CA that was good in straightening out title problems on Studebakers.
                      Does anyone have her contact info?
                      The lady I used to use has retired. I'm very upset about it. She was amazing.


                      • #12
                        It seems once every 40 or so transctions something with the Calif. DMV actually goes right. My Studebker (on Calif. Non-Op at the time of purchase) was one of my few "One and Done" car purchases. At one point the guy goes, "Ooohhh..." and me heart sank expecting the worse. Then he says, "It seems there are $56 in fees posted already. Well, we'll just credit those to you." Perhaps one of the few times I didn't argue with the DMV. And they never even questioned what a Studebaker was either.
                        '64 Lark Type, powered by '85 Corvette L-98 (carburetor), 700R4, - CASO to the Max.


                        • #13

                          The DMV used to be pretty bad in Arizona, but it has improved over the past ten years. It is an area that our state government did look at fixing. I don't know if someone in the offices of government had to go there or not, but I am glad it has improved. One thing they did was allow satellite office that were privately run that also helped but I have registered and plate a car that was not operating. It cost $25.00 on a Studebaker. The odd thing was if you just did a title transfer and not register, the cost was higher and would cost more to register. What they do now in that case is suspend the registration right after you get it and all you have to do now is show proof of insurance when the car is operational to reinstate registration.

                          Bob Miles
                          Different by Design
                          Different by Delight!


                          • #14
                            DMV update

                            I have paid the sales tax and the NEXT years registration.

                            I have an appointment next week Monday and will plead my case that the car is on a non-op and is STILL not on the road. (true enough actually) Hopefully I can stay on the non-op until May 25th (registration date) and not have to pay the 2017/2018 fees. I may pay the fees if they insists that I get the previous own involved in order to "prove" it was not driven.

                            I have also called to get a CHP appointment. Looks like I will be putting that front bumper back on!
                            DT Holder - Bakersfield CA, USA
                            1950 Commander ("Resto-Mod" in progress)


                            • #15
                              California sent me a renewal for my 60 convertible. Somewhere around $165 bucks whereas here it will run me less than $25. Is it really any wonder why people are moving out of there?[/QUOTE]

                              Gees you think you got it bad.
                              I got the renewal for my Champ the other day and it was $735Aud and its not unusual for cars to be nudging if not over the $1000 per year.
                              Yes we are getting ripped off.