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Trailers, Jumpers and Judges... oh my!

Discussion in 'Drivers License, Vehicle Registration' started by TP123, Feb 26, 2021.

  1. TP123

    TP123 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    Florida
    Buyer purchased 1970 Shasta Compact trailer and because it’s under 2000lbs FL DMV says no Title needed. Checked law enforcement and liens... none. Trailer in near salvage condition. Invest $$$ and time rehabbing... now go to Register for Plates And DMV sez it was titled back in 1998 but has not been registerd since 2010 and will not release any further info. They have not been helpful.

    It appears there are at least 2 “Owners/Title jumpers” between titled owner and me. Spent considerable time trying to track down the owner in a neighboring county. No go. Now I’ve verified the VIN number and Under 2000lns weight. Now Insured.

    Have brought suit in county court For Declaratory Judgement to be named owner and force DMV to title, register and plate.
    Trailer also too old (1970) For Bonded Title. Now too nice for Salvage Title.

    Helllllllllllllp!
    PTSD Vet is super nervous about hearing next month. I asked Court Admin if I should send notice to my seller and was told that will not be necessary.

    What do you think the Court will do? Any advice?
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2021
  2. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    No idea. I've not read the complaint you filed, the state's and prior owner's answers, the motions and ruling by the court since the pleadings were filed, or what admissible evidence you have to present. Nor will I see how each party does in the upcoming hearing or trial. I'm sorry, but there just isn't enough here to make even an educated guess on the outcome.
     
    zddoodah likes this.
  3. TP123

    TP123 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    THANKS... I think. ; )
    Please scope out the 'Complaint' in a sep. post below
    No answers from state or prior owners
    No pleadings
    And it seems I am gonna be the only one at the Zoom hearing...
    Just wondering if there was someone out there that had done Title Jumping cases before...
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2021
  4. TP123

    TP123 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    IN THE COUNTY COURT OF XXXXXXX COUNTY
    CASE#______
    Tom XXXXXXX, PLAINTIFF
    VS.
    Florida Dept. of Motor Vehicles, XXXXXXX County, FL, DEFENDANT

    COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT ACTION

    COMES NOW the Plaintiff, Tom XXXXXXX pursuant to Section 86 and 319 of Florida Statutes, files this Complaint for Declaratory Judgment against the Defendant and in support hereof submits:

    This is an action requesting a Judgement relief involving the Plaintiff’s acquisition of one 1970 XXXXXXXXXXXXXX Travel Trailer, VIN# XXXXXXX in Salvage condition.

    2. All parties are residents of XXXXXXXX County, Florida. Plaintiff’s address is XXXXXXXXXX and is in possession and is the true owner of property described in Item 1 purchased and paid for in XXXXXXXX County, FL.

    3. On XXXXXXX 2020 Plaintiff purchased trailer in near salvage state for the sum of $1500.00. Attached please find Exhibit ‘A” the executed Bill of Sale as well as Florida Notice of Sale signed by both parties. Florida law states that all trailers under 1999 pounds do not require a title. Buyer has spent $1000’s on the restoration since that time.

    4. Seller XXXXXXXXXX asserted to Buyer XXXXXXX that due to sudden health issues he had never registered nor titled said trailer nor had the person he purchased it from, Ms. XXXXXXXX, several years earlier. Please find their points of contact in Exhibit “F”.

    5. Trailer does not show up as Stolen with all local and state law enforcement.

    6. In an effort to follow the laws of our state Plaintiff seeks to pay tax for purchase, Register said Trailer and receive plates to operate on public road ways. Upon doing so the Dept. of Motor Vehicles notified Plantiff that the trailer has/had been titled in the State (Title ###########) back in 1993 and refused to allow him to complete the transaction nor provide any info for its resolution.

    7. In support of Plaintiffs case please find the following:
    •Exhibit "B" is a copy of the Florida Notice of Sale (Fl Form#82050) signed by both parties
    •Exhibit "C" is a Notarized copy of Affidavit Regarding Loss of Title
    •Exhibit “D” is Verification of Insurance on said Vehicle
    • Exhibit “E” is a Weight Certificate showing the Trailers weight to be under 1999lbs
    • Exhibit “F” is a Statement of Fact from Plantiff

    REQUEST FOR DECLARATORY RELIEF
    WHEREFORE Based on the foregoing, it is requested that this Court declare the following:
    As Plantiff has acted in good faith, made every effort to contact the former owner(s) and upon payment of all fees, the Court directs the Florida Dept. of Motor Vehicles, XXXXXXXXX County to issue a current Title, Registration and License Plates for said Trailer, VIN# XXXXXX.

    Respectfully submitted,
     
  5. Zigner

    Zigner Well-Known Member

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    I found this for Nassau county (which may not be your county) - it may give you some clues about what may or may not be right in your paperwork:

    https://nassauclerk.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Declaratory-packet.pdf

    EDIT: For example, you need to make sure that you've properly named the defendant and that you've properly documented the steps you have taken. Also, see item 10 in the complaint template...do you have such a letter?
     
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  6. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Better be able to cite the statute number and wording at the hearing if you need to. Don't assume that, or rely on, the judge knowing it or looking it up.

    It's Section 319.20 of Chapter 319 Title Certificates:

    Statutes & Constitution :View Statutes : Online Sunshine

    By the way, wouldn't it have been easier to just post a bond per 319.23(7)?
     
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  7. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    I always prefer the EASY way over the HARD (HARDER) way.
     
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  8. TP123

    TP123 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    The trailer is too old for a Bonded Title : (

    THANKS for the great info
     
  9. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Oh, OK.
     

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