Q: I lost the title for my car. I have no idea where it went. What do I need to do to get a new one?
A: You can find the application for a duplicate title on the DMV Web site at http://www.dmv.ca.gov. You can replace lost, stolen or mutilated titles by filling out the form, attaching the damaged title, if mutilated, and paying the duplicate title fee. You may submit the application either in person or by mail. You can send the completed forms with payment to:
Department of Motor Vehicles
P.O. Box 942869 MS E254
Q: I was in a car crash recently and my insurance company called my vehicle a total loss. Working on cars is a hobby of mine, so I plan to retain ownership of the vehicle and make repairs. What do I need to do for everything to be legal?
A: First your insurance company will need to notify the DMV that you will retain the car. Next you will have to obtain a Salvage Certificate or Non-repairable Vehicle Certificate within 10 days from the date the insurance company called it a total loss.
The form can be found on the DMV site at http://www.dmv.ca.gov.
Should you ever want to sell the vehicle you must disclose to the purchaser at, or prior to the time of sale, that it has been declared a total loss salvage vehicle. If you don’t you could be subject to a civil suit or penalty.
Q: Is there a freeway portion to the behind the wheel driver test?
A: At this time, freeway driving is not tested in the behind-the-wheel portion of the standard driver test. However, if you are taking the commercial driver test, you will be asked to enter a freeway, maintain proper lane position and speed, change lanes correctly and exit safely.
Section 12 of the Commercial Driver License Handbook can assist drivers taking the commercial driving test and can be found online at http://www.dmv.ca.gov.
George Valverde is the director of the California Department of Vehicles.