NBC10 Boston Responds

Paperwork Problems: Widow Who Moved to Mass. Couldn't Get Car Registered

Karen Jenkins contacted NBC10 Boston Responds as a last ditch effort to help with her expired car registration

NBC Universal, Inc.

When Karen Jenkins contacted NBC10 Consumer Investigative Reporter Leslie Gaydos, she was perplexed.

“It was like my last ditch,” she says. “I figured, what am I going to do? I figured I don’t know and so I just emailed you.”

Jenkins' husband had recently died and she moved from New Hampshire to Massachusetts in December as her car registration was expiring.

“It was a perfect storm of circumstances. Moving from one state to another and with the death of my husband,” she said.

The problem? She couldn’t get her car registered in Massachusetts. Jenkins says she was told she had to submit a title that did not have her husband’s name on it, along with additional paperwork -- and that it all had to be in the same envelope.

But she couldn’t make that happen.

“The title was coming from California, that’s where the title was held and that was no issue,” she explained. “The issue was the paperwork had to be in one envelope and sent to Quincy registration, that was the issue."

"And my title company says they didn’t do that because it was personal information and they didn’t want to be responsible for it, and the registry said if it’s not in one envelope it will keep getting rejected," Jenkins added.

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Jenkins says the title was sent to the RMV four times. She tried to submit the paperwork separately, but it was rejected, and the title company told her they couldn’t send the title to her directly, so she could send in all the documents together.

She says she called the registry numerous times for help, but was unsuccessful and as you can imagine, frustrated.

“Very frustrated because you need a car, I had to work and I had to rely on my kids to take me everyplace,” she said. “There was no way to resolve it, the registry wanted all the paperwork in one envelope but the title company said, 'no, we can’t do that.'”

NBC10 Boston Responds reached out to the registry and got it straightened out for Jenkins.

“Four or five days later, I received everything, my plates and the registration,” she said.

She and her husband had lost hope that they would ever see a refund after an April 2020 Cancun trip with friends was canceled due to COVID.

MassDOT told NBC10 Boston in a statement: "The registry of motor vehicles (RMV) researched this case and determined that further documentation was needed to process the customer’s registration application. The RMV worked with the customer to ensure that the required paperwork was submitted and processed."

Jenkins is grateful to be driving again -- and her kids are excited, too.

“It’s all good Leslie, thank you so much, it’s all good, everything, I can drive again,” she said. “I appreciate it so much, I can’t appreciate it more. My kids appreciate it… they probably appreciate it the most!”

Jenkins says they are all happy she doesn’t have to wake her kids up early anymore to pick her up in the morning.

Whether it’s a paperwork problem or another consumer issue you need help with, reach out to us at https://www.nbcboston.com/consumer-form/ or call 1-888-521-NEWS. We’ve gotten back over a million dollars for our viewers, maybe we can help you, too!

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