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Selling a Car With a Lien in Florida

Selling a Car With a Lien in Florida

If you are selling a car with a lien in Florida, you might find it difficult, and that’s because you cannot legally sell a car in Florida if your vehicle’s title has a lien.

This guide will walk you through the process of getting a lien released in Florida so you can get your title.

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What is a Lien?

A lien is a legal way for a property owner to ensure they will receive full payment for the item they are selling. In the case of a car, if a buyer ceases to make payments or defaults on their car loan, a lien on the car title gives the lienholder the right to repossess the vehicle.

Who is a Lienholder?

A lienholder is an entity or individual responsible for issuing the car loan. Typically, a Florida lienholder is a credit union, bank, or other financial firm. A lienholder can also be referred to as the legal car owner until the buyer satisfies their loan.

Removing a Lien from a Florida Title

As of 2013, Florida’s vehicle title system is completely electronic based. Once you’ve completed your car payments, your lienholder will electronically notify the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) that the lien on your title has been released. The title will remain electronic unless you request a paper copy from your local DHSMV office.

To convert an e-title, enter the proper information on the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ website. Once you complete the process, you can have the paper title:

Lost Paper Titles

If you lose your paper title after you have removed the lien, visit your local Florida tax collector’s office with:

  • A completed Application for Duplicate or Lost In Transit/Reassignment for a Motor Vehicle, Mobile Home or Vessel Title Certificate (Form HSMV 82101).
  • A duplicate title fee of $75.25.

My Closing Thoughts

Remember, removing a lien from your car title is a crucial step in becoming the legal owner of your vehicle. Make sure to follow these steps carefully to ensure a smooth process.

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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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