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Vehicle Retirement FAQs

1. What is the Vehicle Retirement Program?

The Vehicle Retirement Program is administered by the Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) and is designed to help improve California's air quality. Through CAP, a consumer may retire a qualified vehicle and receive $1,000 or $1,500 if the consumer meets low income eligibility guidelines.

2. What are the requirements to retire my vehicle through CAP?

Eligibility requirements are available here.

3. How do I participate in Vehicle Retirement?

You must submit a completed CAP application. To apply online, click here or contact the Department of Consumer Affairs' Consumer Information Center at (800) 952-5210.

4. Are there documents I should submit with my application?

After your application is processed, you will be notified by mail if additional documents are required.

5. How will I be notified if I qualify?

After your application is processed, you will be mailed a determination letter. In general, CAP applications are processed within four (4) weeks of receipt of a completed application.

6. If approved, what can I expect?

If approved, you will receive a Letter of Eligibility which will provide specific instructions on how to successfully retire your vehicle through CAP. Included will be a list of auto dismantlers authorized by BAR to retire your vehicle.

7. Where do I take my vehicle?

You must choose from the list of auto dismantlers authorized by BAR to retire CAP vehicles. Click here for a list of dismantler or call the Department of Consumer Affairs, Consumer Information Center at (800) 952-5210. Always contact the dismantler prior to arriving to ensure they are able to accept CAP vehicles. Some dismantlers require appointments. Participation in CAP is also subject to the availability of funds.

8. Is there a deadline to take my vehicle to the dismantler?

Yes. You must take your vehicle to a CAP contracted dismantler prior to the expiration date indicated on your Letter of Eligibility. It is recommended you retire your vehicle as soon as possible. This will allow you time to address any issues that may arise and prohibit you from driving the vehicle to a dismantler site. If you are unable to use the Letter of Eligibility by the expiration date, but are still interested in retiring your vehicle, you will need to re-apply and meet all eligibility requirements at that time.

9. What if I do not have the original California Certificate of Title to my vehicle, or the title is issued by a state other than California, or the title to my vehicle is altered (e.g., crossed out information)?

You must contact the auto dismantler you plan to visit for further instructions.

10. Do all owners listed on the vehicle's registration need to be present at the dismantler site to retire the vehicle?

Yes. If any of the registered owner(s) cannot be present, a DMV Power of Attorney form (REG 260 or REG 262) must be completed by the owner(s) designating someone else permission to retire the vehicle on their behalf.

11. Where can I get the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) forms I need?

You can obtain DMV forms on DMV's website, at any DMV office, or by contacting the DMV Call Center at (800) 777-0133.

12. Do I need to show the dismantler photo identification?

Yes. All registered owners and designees must present their driver license or other photo identification. Designees must also provide a copy of the registered owner(s) photo identification.

13. When will I get paid for my vehicle?

If your vehicle passes the equipment and operational inspection, the dismantler will immediately issue a check made out to the registered owner(s).

14. Can the dismantler give me a ride home?

No. You are responsible for arranging your own transportation home.

15. Where can I get more information?

Contact CAP at (866) 272-9642. CAP agents are available to answer calls Monday through Friday, 8:10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. BAR offices are closed on Saturdays, Sundays, and state holidays.

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