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Locate the title to the car.

3 Ways to Register a Car Without a Title - wikiHow

If you purchased the car from a private seller, the name of the previous owner is often on the title. If the car was purchased from a dealership, it is often unable to disclose the names of previous owners. Visit a website that specializes in car history reports, such as autocheck.

For a fee, these websites will use the VIN to run a history report check showing how many previous owners the car had and any major or minor accidents the car has been in. Expect to fill out an application to either transfer or replace a title , and have information such as the vehicle's VIN number, odometer reading, and a bill of sale.

Get in touch with the previous owner.

If you have a car without a title, get in touch with the previous owner to determine whether they still have the title. Whenever a car changes ownership, the title should be transferred as well. If you are unable to get the title transferred, getting a new title will be more challenging. Fill out the necessary paperwork together.

State of Rhode Island: Division of Motor Vehicles

The easiest way to get your vehicle title is by finding the previous owner and going over the necessary paperwork together. The paperwork will vary from state to state. If possible, visit a state office together with the vehicle to fill out all of the paperwork and complete the transfer process. The title holder will complete paperwork indicating transfer of ownership and you will be issued a new title. There cannot be an outstanding loan against a vehicle while transferring the title, unless the transfer is approved by the lender.

The odometer reading at time of transfer and VIN numbers on the vehicle must match those in the paperwork. Method 2. Determine that you do not have the title. A title is the legal proof that you own a particular vehicle. It is an important piece of paper that should be kept in a safe and secure area. Unless you are certain it is permanently lost or stolen, keep looking for it, as it is a time-consuming and relatively expensive process to have a title replaced.

Establish your eligibility for a bonded title. If you do not have a title to prove your ownership of a vehicle and cannot contact the party that sold it to you, you will need to purchase a surety bond and apply for a bonded title through your state government. These will usually include residence in the state where you hope to title the vehicle.

Provide all necessary paperwork. Give everything required to prove your eligibility to a state office, as directed by your state's DMV website. You will also need to pay a fee.

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Necessary paperwork will likely include a statement of fact regarding how you came into possession of the vehicle, any other evidence that indicates your ownership of the vehicle, a photo ID, and an application for a bonded title. Purchase a surety bond.

Lookup Vehicle Owner by VIN

If you meet eligibility requirements, the state will send you a letter that contains the amount of the bond you will need to purchase. This bond amount will be greater than the value of the vehicle itself. The amount is determined by the state based on the information contained in your paperwork.

How to Locate a Classic car VIN

Bring the letter to an agency that is licensed to sell surety bonds in your state, such as an auto-insurance agency. While there will be some fee involved with the purchase of the bond itself, the bond is simply a legal instrument that makes you financially responsible for ownership of the vehicle. Apply for a bonded title from your state. Once you have purchased a bond, return to the secretary of state to complete the titling process. You will then need to register your car to drive it legally. Method 3.

Check a DMV website for registration requirements. While the specific process varies, the basic order of operation is similar in most states. Current registration is required in every U. While some states require you to update your registration annually, registration lasts longer in some states. Download and fill out forms ahead of time. Print them and fill them out at home to make sure you have all of the necessary information.

Be ready to pay these when you register your car. If you can find out some of this info before hand it will help you in the long run. You will need to talk to your local DMV about their specific requirements, because these can vary by state.

#1: Communication is Key

Use this checklist when buying a used vehicle:. Make sure you have your seller write up and sign a bill of sale for this vehicle with specific terms of your agreement. A bill of sale will help prove ownership of the vehicle and some states will not do anything for you if you do not have a bill of sale in hand. Please use their information at your own regard.

What is a Good Deal when Buying a Used Car? (How to Buy a Used Car)

You will want to contact your local DMV to make sure there is no active loan on the vehicle. If the vehicle is in your name and a bank or other institution is owed money on it, they will not hesitate to come after you for the money. Most states will require a Certificate of Title Bond in order to get a new title for your vehicle.