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How To Sign A Car Title Over

How To Sign Over A Car Title

In any and every state, a car title is the supreme document for proving ownership, so making sure you sign it over correctly and according to the law is of the utmost importance

To properly transfer ownership, the seller needs to release their interest in the vehicle by signing over the title to the new buyer.

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Steps To Signing Over a Car Title

The process for signing over a title can vary somewhat by state, but generally follows these steps:

1Locate the vehicle’s original title certificate or request a duplicate if lost
2Review the title to ensure all vehicle and owner information is correct
3As the seller, sign the “Transfer of Ownership” section to release your interest, using blue or black ink and signing exactly as your name appears
4Provide additional documentation as required, such as:
– Bill of Sale
– Odometer Disclosure Statement
– Lien Release (if applicable)
5Have your signature on the title notarized if required by your state
6Transfer the properly signed title documents to the buyer
Steps To Signing Over a Car Title

1. Locate the Vehicle’s Title

The first step is finding the original title certificate for the vehicle. This may be called a “Certificate of Title” or “Pink Slip” depending on your state. If you can’t locate the original, you’ll need to request a duplicate title from your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) before proceeding.

2. Check Title Information

Review the title document carefully to ensure all the vehicle information is correct, including:

  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Make, model, and year of the vehicle
  • Current owner’s name(s) listed
Car Title3

3. Sign Over The Title

As the current owner and seller, you’ll need to release your interest and ownership of the vehicle.

There is typically a “Transfer of Ownership” or similarly named section on the title where you’ll sign and print your name.

Some key things to remember when signing:

  • Use blue or black ink
  • Sign exactly as your name appears on the title (including middle initials)
  • Have any other owners listed on the title sign as well
  • Date your signature For example, in Ohio both the buyer and seller must sign the title in front of a notary or inform the notary they signed it themselves.

Where To Sign on a Car Title As the Seller

There is typically a “Transfer of Ownership,” “Assignment of Title by Owner,” or a similarly named section on the title where you’ll sign and print your name.

4. Provide Additional Documentation

Many states require additional paperwork beyond just signing the title, such as:

  • Bill of Sale – This document records the sale price, date, and signatures of buyer and seller. Some states require this to be notarized as well.
  • Odometer Disclosure Statement – Confirms the vehicle’s current mileage reading.
  • Lien Release – If there is a lienholder listed on the title (e.g. a bank for an auto loan), you’ll need a lien release statement showing the loan has been satisfied.

5. Have Signatures Notarized

Certain states like North Carolina require having the seller’s signature on the title notarized by a licensed notary public, however states like Florida do not.

States that require a Notary:

  • Pennsylvania
  • Oklahoma
  • Ohio
  • North Carolina
  • Montana
  • Louisiana
  • Kentucky
  • Arizona

If you live in a state that requires a notary, the notary will verify your identity, witness the signing, and stamp/seal the document.

6. Transfer to New Owner

Once you’ve properly signed over the title and provided any supplementary paperwork, you’ll give the title documents to the buyer. It’s now their responsibility to take those documents to the DMV and re-title the vehicle in their name. The buyer may have to provide additional items like:

  • Application for new title
  • Proof of insurance
  • Payment for title transfer fees

While the general process is similar across states, I recommend you check your specific state’s DMV website or handbook.

Requirements can differ on things like notarization, documentation needed, and processes for transferring titles after the owner is deceased or when a lien is involved.

Signing Over a Car Title Checklist

  • Gather these documents:
    •  Car title
    •  Valid photo ID
    •  Bill of sale (if required in your state)
    •  Odometer disclosure statement
    •  Lien release from lender (if financed)
    •  Other state-specific forms
  • As seller, sign the title:
    •  Ensure you are a legal owner listed
    •  Use blue or black ink
    •  Sign on correct “Seller” line
    •  Get signature notarized (if required)
  • As buyer before visiting DMV:
    •  Verify signed title matches seller
    •  Confirm lien released if financed
    •  Gather license, insurance, invoices
    •  Have payment ready
  • At the DMV:
    •  Submit signed title & paperwork
    •  Provide accurate sale price for taxes
    •  Pay title transfer and registration fees
    •  Get new plates or temporary permit
  • Final steps:
    •  Remove old license plates (if required)
    •  Update insurance with new car details
    •  Enjoy your new ride!

Common Questions About Car Title Transfers Answered

What if I lost my car title?

You can request a duplicate title from your state’s DMV, local county clerk’s office, or vehicle finance lender if you still have a loan.

What documents do I need when transferring a title?

Typical requirements are the signed title, bill of sale, ID, insurance, odometer statement, but check your state DMV’s website for specifics.

What if I made a mistake on the title documents?

Don’t use correction tape or fluid which can void forms. Instead, submit a correction statement to amend errors. Signing on the wrong line may require getting a replacement title before finalizing sale.

How much are title transfer fees?

Between $20-$200 typically depending on state and taxes. Calculate exactly using your state DMV’s title transfer fee calculator.

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Picture of Steve Momot - Author

Steve Momot - Author

Steve, a seasoned expert in the automotive industry, formerly held a car dealer license in Florida. With extensive experience spanning across car trading and mechanical work, he founded Autohitch. His mission? To guide both buyers and sellers through the intricate maze of car purchasing, ensuring a seamless and informed experience. Outside of the automotive world, Steve has a passion for fishing and capturing the beauty of nature through photography.


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