Individuals and Families
Individuals and Families > Consumers > Title Defect Recision Fund

Title Issues for Used Vehicles

If a used car dealer fails to obtain a title in your name within 40 days after the sale, file a consumer complaint with the Ohio Attorney General's Office online or by calling 800-282-0515.

What is the purpose of the TDR Fund?
The Title Defect Recision(TDR) Fund was created to maintain and administer refunds to retail purchasers of motor vehicles who suffer damages from motor vehicle dealers who fail to provide a valid certificate of title in the purchaser’s name within the statutorily required period of time or fail to make certain required disclosures. For more information, see Ohio Revised Code (ORC) Section 4505.181 and ORC 1345.52. If the Ohio Attorney General pays a consumer on behalf of a dealer as a result of a TDR payout, then the dealer must obtain a surety bond.

Under the law, the retail purchaser has an unconditional right to rescind the transaction and the licensed Ohio dealer has an obligation to refund to the retail purchaser all monies paid, if the dealership did not have title in the name of the dealership on the date of purchase and  one of the following applies:
  • The dealer fails to obtain a certificate of title in the consumer’s name after 40 days from the date of the purchase;
  • The certificate of title for the vehicle indicates that it is a rebuilt salvage vehicle, and that fact was not disclosed to the consumer in writing before the execution of the purchase agreement; or
  • The certificate of title for the vehicle indicates that the dealer has made an inaccurate odometer disclosure to the consumer.
  • The title for the vehicle indicates that it is a manufacturer "buyback" vehicle, and the fact that it is a "buyback" vehicle was not disclosed to the retail purchaser in the written purchase agreement. OR
  • The motor vehicle is a used manufactured home or used mobile home, that has been repossessed, and the dealer fails to obtain a certificate of title on or before the fortieth day after the dealer obtains the certificate of title for the home from the repossessing party or the date on which an occupancy permit for the home is delivered to the purchaser by the appropriate legal authority, whichever occurs later.
When can a consumer apply for relief under TDR?
The consumer may apply to the Attorney General for payment from the TDR Fund of any monies paid for the purchase of the vehicle if:
  • The consumer notifies the dealer of one or more of the circumstances listed above within the time frame described in ORC 4505.181(C); and
  • The dealer fails to refund the consumer all monies paid for the purchase of the vehicle or fails to reach a satisfactory compromise within seven business days.
What are the license requirements for used motor vehicle dealers?
Pursuant to Ohio Administrative Code 4501:1-3-11 and with some limited exceptions, each person applying for a used motor vehicle dealer license under Chapter 4517 of the Revised Code is required to post with the Ohio Attorney General's Office a surety bond of not less than $25,000.  The bond shall be used solely for the purpose of replenishing funds that have been dispersed from the TDR Fund to compensate retail purchasers of motor vehicles, as pursuant to section 4505.181 of the Ohio Revised Code.  In addition, the surety bond should meet the requirements listed below.
  • The bond shall be posted in favor of the State of Ohio.
  • The bond must be retained for the entire duration of the license.
  • The business name on the bond must correspond exactly with the business name on file with the bureau of motor vehicles and the secretary of state, as applicable.
  • The original bond must be mailed to the address below.  The dealer may wish to retain a copy for their records as this document will not be returned.  Please also use this address to notify our office of any changes to the surety bond or provide notifications of renewals or cancellations.

    Ohio Attorney General
    Consumer Protection Section
    Attn: TDR Fund Unit Surety Bond
    30 E Broad Street, 14th Floor
    Columbus, OH 43215

    View a sample surety bond.