West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice announced that in the first quarter of this year, the state will become the first in the country to digitize vehicle titles and the process to acquire vehicle registrations.

In a press release, Gov. Justice said that the state’s current services will be expanded to facilitate a fully digital process, enabling online, mobile, and contactless services for vehicle retailers, lenders, insurance carriers, and West Virginians through the Department of Motor Vehicles’ (DMV) online portal.

“Improving West Virginian’s experience at the DMV has been a priority of mine throughout my administration,” Gov. Justice said. “I am proud of the services our DMV has developed during my tenure and really excited to adopt a digital solution like this, one that really revolutionizes the process of vehicle titling for West Virginians.”

As part of the new modernization effort, residents will be able to both access and store their vehicle titles online or on their smartphones. The portal will also allow all West Virginia residents to conduct title and registration-related transactions remotely, which the governor’s office said is a first in the United States.

“It is more secure, much faster, good for the environment, and it puts our citizens first, getting them out of line at the DMV,” Gov. Justice said. “Once again, we have demonstrated that our state is a first mover, at the forefront of technology, and the result is wildly improved efficiency for our citizens and our state.”

To roll out the new portal, West Virginia has partnered with digital government solutions firm NIC West Virginia and Champ Titles. After the rollout is complete, the DMV will utilize the Champ Titles Digital Title and Registration Suite (DTRS). The governor’s office explained that DTRS is a “comprehensive vehicle title administration solution to manage titles, registrations, liens, and dealer licensing.”

“We are proud to be the first state to allow this transformational technology to be a reality for all members of our community,” said Everett Frazier, commissioner of West Virginia’s Division of Motor Vehicles. “We believe that fully digital vehicle titling will offer significant benefits for our auto dealers, lenders, insurance companies, all of their service providers, and most importantly, our citizens.”

The governor’s office said it believes the new process will reduce the number of pieces of paper the DMV currently uses by 4,000,000 per year, the days vehicles sit in salvage yards waiting on titles by 1,000,000, and significantly reduce the time that West Virginians need to spend in DMV offices processing title and registration related transactions.

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Kate Polit
Kate Polit
Kate Polit is MeriTalk SLG's Assistant Copy & Production Editor, covering Cybersecurity, Education, Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs