Electronic Lien and Title


Mandatory ELT

Pursuant to §56-19-265 (F), beginning February 1, 2017, any lien recorded by a commercial/business entity must be held as an Electronic Lien and Title (ELT) with the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles. All commercial/business lenders will be required to enroll in the Electronic Lien and Title Program and develop an ELT system interfacing with DMV to be able to transmit and receive electronic lien information. 


Also expected in 2017, SCDMV will begin charging lenders for their use of the ELT service to transmit and receive information from the Department as described in SC Code of Law section 56-19-265(D).  The expected fee will be $2.50 to record an electronic lien and $2.50 for subsequent transmittals for electronic lien and title corrections.


Please note, all ELT lenders must implement the web expedite lien release transaction as a best practice. SCDMV will allow a six month grace period, ending July 31, 2017, to allow lenders to enroll in the ELT program and establish an interface either through a service provider or by establishing a proprietary system.


SCDMV will continue to notify lenders of additional significant program changes prior to implementation. Future information of fees and program changes also may be found on this page.

If you are an established ELT lender with functioning expedite web release capability then you need not take any action in response to this notice.

FAQ- Mandatory ELT

Mandatory ELT Information for Motor Vehicle Dealers

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General Information

The South Carolina Electronic Title and Registration (ELT) program allows authorized lenders to record and service liens on vehicles, trailers or mobile homes electronically. This service will eliminate mailing, storing and manual handling of paper titles.


A lender may participate in the ELT program using 1 of the 2 approaches below:

  1. Proprietary – The Lender may develop a proprietary ELT system to interface with DMV.
  2. Service Provider – The ELT system may be supplied to the Lender through an approved Service Provider (third party) who works with the DMV to provide lenders with a computer based system to record liens by electronic means.

The following electronic functions are offered:

  • Lien Notification
  • Lien Release
  • Lien Release Due to Error
  • Print Title
  • Address Change Notification by Lienholder

Enabling legislation for the South Carolina electronic lien program:


SECTION 56-19-265. Electronic liens; transaction fee for transmission or retrieval of data.

(A) Notwithstanding any requirement in this chapter that a lien on a motor vehicle or mobile home shall be noted on the face of the certificate of title, if there are one or more liens or encumbrances on the motor vehicle or mobile home, the Department of Motor Vehicles shall transmit, electronically or by paper certificate, the lien to the first lienholder and notify the first lienholder of any additional liens. Subsequent lien satisfactions may be electronically transmitted to the department and shall include the name and address of the person satisfying the lien. When electronic transmission of liens and lien satisfaction is used, a certificate of title need not be issued until the last lien is satisfied and a clear certificate of title is issued to the owner of the motor vehicle or mobile home. When a motor vehicle or mobile home is subject to an electronic lien, the certificate of title for the motor vehicle or mobile home is considered to be physically held by the lienholder for purposes of compliance with state or federal odometer disclosure requirements, and a duly certified copy of the department's electronic record of the lien is admissible in any civil, criminal, or administrative proceeding in this State as evidence of the existence of the lien. The lienholder shall have the option to receive a paper certificate of title and to receive notices of subsequent liens and satisfaction of liens by the United States Postal Service.

(B) The department is authorized to collect a transaction fee from commercial parties who either transmit or retrieve data from the department pursuant to this section. The fee must not exceed five dollars for each transaction and must be mutually agreed to by all parties. These fees must be placed by the Comptroller General into a special restricted account to be used by the department to defray the expenses of this program.

(C) Commercial parties and lenders who either transmit or retrieve data from the department pursuant to this section, notwithstanding Sections 37-2-202 and 37-3-202, may collect transaction fees from owners of the vehicles or mobile homes not to exceed a fee of five dollars for each transaction which must be mutually agreed to by all parties.

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Application Process for ELT Participation

Lender Application:

Lenders interested in participating in this program must contact an approved service provider for the SC ELT Program or complete an Application for Electronic Lien and Title Lienholder and mail the application to DMV at the following address:

SC Department of Motor Vehicles

Vehicle Compliance & Oversight

PO Box 1498

Blythewood, SC 29016-0055

A memorandum of understanding for the program must be completed and signed by the lender and DMV.

If the lender wishes to internally develop the system to communicate directly with DMV, the lender must meet the same technical requirements as service providers and achieve system certification.

Service Providers Application:

Service Providers interested in providing ELT services as an approved ELT business partner must make application by sending a letter of request to the SC Department of Motor Vehicles at the same address as shown above.

Service Providers must achieve system certification prior to providing ELT services to Lender.

The ELT Service Provider Contract must be signed by the service provider and DMV.


Approved ELT Service Providers:

Decision Dynamics, Inc. (DDI)

Attn: Ann Gunning, Project Manager

P.O. Box 2078

Lexington, SC 29071

Office: (803) 808-0117

Fax: (803) 808-3780

Email: info@eTitleLien.com

Website: www.eTitleLien.com



Sales: (888) 708-1369

Customer Service: (866) 868-5900

Website: www.dealertrack.com



Office: (888) 846-6500

Website: www.vintek.com


PDP Group, Inc.
10909 McCormick Road
Hunt Valley, MD 21031
Phone: (800) 666-3008
Email: contact@simplyelt.com
Website: http://www.simplyelt.com <http://www.simplyelt.com/>  

Website: http://www.pdpgroupinc.com <http://www.pdpgroupinc.com/>     


Secure Title Administration, Inc.

2975 Breckinridge Blvd., Suite 200

Duluth, GA 30096

Website: http://info.secureta.com

List of ELT Lenders


By completing the application for participation in the ELT program, the lender or service provider demonstrates their understanding and commitment to the following:

  1. Lender may agree to enter into an agreement with a DMV approved service provider, or achieve system certification for their own ELT computer system.
  2. Lender/Service Provider must agree to training as required by DMV and/or the DMV’s service provider.
  3. Lender/Service Provider must agree to bear all costs for participation in the program such as costs incurred for computer hardware, labor, electronic interface system changes, and transaction processing.
  4. Lender/Service Provider must agree to comply with all rules, policies, procedures and standards applicable to the ELT program.
  5. Service provider must agree to all terms required by the lender and sign a non-disclosure agreement.
  6. Lender/Service provider must sign memorandum of understanding with DMV before transmitting customer, vehicle and lien data. 

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ELT Business Rules

·         An electronic title with lien will remain electronic until it is printed.

·         Once printed, it will remain a paper title, unless it is surrendered again to become an electronic title.

·         No more data will be exchanged than is currently printed on the title.

·         DMV will identify business customers as ELT lenders.

·         All liens processed for an ELT lienholder customer number will be electronic.

·         Title application and supporting documents are submitted as usual either by the customer, the lender or a dealership.

·         The title application must include the ELT leinholder customer number to insure that lien is processed as an electronic lien.

·         Title applications placed in ‘suspense’ will not print or result in an ELT lien transaction until the ‘suspense’ cause is resolved.

·         Titles removed from ‘suspense’ status will maintain the ELT status if the lienholder is an ELT lienholder.

·         ELT lienholder acknowledgements are returned in a batch with any errors identified. The acknowledgements and errors are part of the AAMVA standard transaction.

·         ELT lien errors are reported by the lienholder or service provider with a description of the error or discrepancy.

·         Lenders and service providers must abide by all applicable state and federal privacy laws to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of DMV customer data.

·         Lenders and service providers must sign a Memorandum of Understanding before vehicle, customer and lien data is electronically transmitted through the ELT program.

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ELT Transaction Details

These are the transactions provided in support of electronic filing of liens and service of liens. These transactions will be formatted by the AAMVA ELT standards. The transactions may be processed using the AAMVA mailbox, or provisions may be made to transmit transaction through other means such as web services. There may be a charge to develop alternate communication methods.


Lien Notification

An electronic notification will be transmitted to a lender designated as an ELT lienholder when DMV processes an Application for Title and Registration recording a lien against a vehicle. The electronic notification creates an electronic title. Applications for title and registration received by DMV must meet all title and registration requirements before the lien will be electronically recorded. ELT lenders will have a designated customer number to identify the lender as an ELT lienholder.


Lien Release

When a lien is satisfied on a vehicle with an ELT title, the ELT lender will send an electronic message to DMV. Upon receipt of the electronic notification, the lien will be marked as satisfied on DMV files and a title will be printed and mailed to the second lienholder, the owner or the ‘mail to’ address identified in the message. A ‘mail to’ address can be a dealership, bank or other third party.


Lien Release Due to Error

When an ELT lender receives a lien notification that is not recognized as that lender’s lien, a Lien Release due to error message should be sent to DMV. DMV will research the error by verifying the electronic data with the application for title and supporting documents. If an error was made in recording the lien, owner or vehicle data, the error will be corrected and a new lien notification will be sent to the ELT lender. If the error cannot be corrected, DMV will contact the ELT lender by letter, email or telephone.


Print Title

If the ELT lender transmits a print title message, DMV will print the title, remove the title from ELT status and mail the title to the lienholder or the designated ‘mail to’ address.


Change Owner’s Address

ELT lenders can transmit change of address data for the owner of the vehicle if the owner changes addressed with the lender. When this data is received, DMV will compare the address to the address for the customer in the DMV customer files. If the new address is on file with DMV for the owner, no action will be taken. If the owner has not changed the address with DMV, a letter will be mailed to the customer stating the address change was reported by the lender and how to change a customer’s address with DMV.

ELT Lien Release/ELT Print

ELT lenders can transmit electronic lien releases and/or print title requests if a lien release or printed title is required the same day. When data is received from the provider, DMV will prepare the title for issuance over the counter at a DMV branch office. The provider will furnish the customer with a receipt for the over the counter title and DMV will charge an expedited fee. If the title is not picked up after one day the title will be printed and mailed to either the owner, lienholder or designated 'mail to' address.


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ELT Technical Standards

These are the transactions offered in support of perfecting and releasing liens for vehicles, trailers and mobile homes electronically.


  • Lien Notification
  • Lien Release
  • Lien Release Due to Error
  • Print Title
  • Change Owner Address
  • Expedited Lien Release/ELT Print

These transactions will be processed according to AAMVA standards using the message count mode. Messages will be grouped to send to the lender, which will respond by sending a count of messages received, messages processed and messages in error with the appropriate error messages.


The documentation for recording of liens will be presented to the Department of Motor Vehicles in the normal manner. If the first lien is held by a financial institution in the ELT Program, no hardcopy title will be printed. An electronic message will be sent to the lender with the vehicle, owner and lien data. The lender will acknowledge and confirm the lien data. This will be handled in a batch process at night.


The following is a list of required data elements for each transaction. You may click on the transaction name to view the required data elements.


Lien Notification

Release of lien and Response of lien due to errors

Request paper title

Change Owner address by lienholder

Expedited Lien Release/ELT Print



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ELT System Certification

ELT System Certification:


Lenders/Service Providers are required to pass a structured test to achieve system certification. Before ‘going live’ in production, lender/service provider must complete all necessary agreements and demonstrate that the lien notification and lien servicing transactions can be accomplished in a test environment. Samples of test transactions are listed next. Once the lender or service provider system is certified by DMV, no additional testing will be required to add other lenders to the same system.  These lenders must complete all necessary agreements.


Click here to view ELT Structured Test.

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Lienholder Customer Numbers for Participants

A customer number will be designated as the ELT Lienholder Customer Number for the Lender. This number may be identified from the customer numbers on file with DMV or a new customer number may be assigned. If the lienholder customer has multiple customer number on the DMV records, DMV will merge all numbers that can be identified as belonging to the ELT Lienholder to the ELT lienholder customer number. This will assist with the effort to convert paper titles to electronic titles. DMV will maintain a lienholder code table in its automated files. The table will be updated as needed, based on information received from participating financial institutions.

Transmission of Data
  • DMV will transmit information to each lienholder nightly.
  • Transmissions will be done as part of the regular nightly production.
  • Transmissions will include all:
    • Titles with liens created by DMV during that work day.
    • Confirmations of all messages received from the lienholder.
    • Correction messages to data previously transmitted to the lienholder by DMV.
    • DMV will retrieve lienholder transmissions daily during the regular nightly production.

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Corrections of Errors

DMV will notify the lienholder of errors in transmission and/or data by the next working day after the error is discovered.  Notification can be through the nightly production process or by telephone.

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Printing of Titles

Unless otherwise specified, liens released and print title transactions will be processed the following evening after the messages are received from the lienholder. All titles will be printed in a nightly batch production process. The titles will be mailed to the vehicle owner if the lien is satisfied or to the lienholder if a print paper title is requested.  If a ‘mail to’ address is provided, the title will be mailed to that address unless there is a second lienholder.  If there is a second lienholder, the title will be mailed to the second lienholder. If the second lienholder is an ELT lender, the electronic lien notification will be sent instead of the paper title.

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