Transfer Car Title in North Carolina

What Is a Title Transfer?Transfer-Title

The vehicle’s title is a legal document that indicates ownership. When information on a title changes, North Carolina’s DMV requires that a title transfer occur within 28 days of the delivery or notary day. If not, there is a $15 late fee.

Typical title transfer situations include:

* Buying and selling vehicles
* Paying off a car loan
* Transferring ownership between family members
* Giving/receiving a vehicle as a gift
* Donating a vehicle
* Inheriting a vehicle
* Making name changes to an existing title

Selling a VehicleTransfer-Title

Help the selling process move as smoothly as possible by obtaining a vehicle history report to present to interested buyers. A VHR will provide details on your car’s past and hopefully help the interested buyer feel confident in your car.

When a deal’s been made, transfer the title to the buyer:

* Take care of any lien situations, if applicable. This may include obtaining a lien release to give to the buyer or finding out certain lien information to include on the title application.
* Record the odometer reading on the title (or request an Odometer Disclosure Statement from the DMV) if the vehicle is less than 10 years old
* Complete, sign, date, and have notarized the current title with the buyer
* Give the buyer a completed Damage Disclosure Statement. Make sure the buyer understands the information and signs the statement.
* Remove the license plates. If you aren’t planning to transfer them, you must return them to the DMV.
* Give the buyer the above documents to take to the Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office to complete the title transfer

A bill of sale is not required, but it’s a good idea to complete one for your records.

Buying a VehicleTransfer-Title

New Cars
Dealers usually take care of the title transfer. But before you go to register, make sure you have the title in your possession.

Used Cars
If you’re shopping for a used car, start by comparing models online to get an idea of what’s out there. Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, comparison shop to find the best financing and insurance deals. Obtain a vehicle history report for cars you’re interested in to learn more about the car’s past.

When you’ve made your purchase, follow these steps to transfer the title:

* Buyer provides any applicable lien information
* Complete, sign, date, and have notarized the title with the buyer
*Verify odometer recording on the title if the vehicle is less than 10 years old
* Obtain a Damage Disclosure Statement from the seller. When you’re sure you fully understand it, add your signature.
* Be sure the seller removes the plates and gives you the title

Take the title and the following to a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office:

* Completed, notarized title application
* Declaration of Eligible Risk
* Applicable lien release information
* Your valid NC driver’s license or state-issued ID card
* Proof of insurance
* $40 titling fee (plus $15 late fee if you missed the 28-day deadline)

Note: Raleigh and Charlotte locations offer Instant Titles in person and through the mail for $75. Check online to see if you’re eligible.

You can register your car at this time, too. Remember, registration requires additional steps and fees, and perhaps an emissions inspection.

Removing a LienTransfer-Title

Once you’ve paid off your loan, you can have your lienholder removed from the title. Usually the lienholder will send the lien release information to you or the DMV. Once this information has been received, visit a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office to take care of the paperwork and pay the appropriate fees.

Transferring to FamilyTransfer-Title

Transfers between family members means the new owner is exempt from the Highway Use Tax. This applies to:

* Husband and wife
* Parent and child
* Step-parent and step-child

Follow this process:

* Former owner must present applicable lien information, which may include a lien release or other information to be included on the title application
* Former owner must record odometer reading on the title or complete an Odometer Disclosure Statement if the vehicle is less than 10 years old
* Both parties must complete, sign, date, and have notarized the title. Be sure to write "gift" as the purchase price. The former owner is the "seller" and the new owner is the "buyer"
* Former owner must provide new owner with a Damage Disclosure Statement, and both parties must sign it
* Former owner must remove license plates and give the title to the new owner

The new owner must bring the title and the following to a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office:

* Completed and notarized title application
* Completed Declaration of Eligible Risk
* Completed and notarized Highway Use Tax Exemption Certificate
* Valid NC driver’s license or state-issued ID
* Proof of insurance
* $40 title fee (plus $15 late fee if more than 28 days have passed since ownership was transferred)

Note: Raleigh and Charlotte locations offer Instant Titles in person and through the mail for $75. Check online to see if you’re eligible.

You can register your car at this time, too. Remember, registration requires additional steps and fees, and perhaps an emissions inspection.

Gifting a VehicleTransfer-Title

This process is similar to that for transferring between family members. However, the recipient of a gifted vehicle is not eligible for exemption from the Highway Use Tax, they fall into one of the family categories listed above.

Follow this process to transfer the title:

* Gifter must present applicable lien information, which may include a lien release or other information to be included on the title application
* Gifter must record odometer reading on the title or complete an Odometer Disclosure Statement if the vehicle is less than 10 years old
* Both parties must complete, sign, date, and have notarized the title. Be sure to write "gift" as the purchase price. The former owner is the "seller" and the new owner is the "buyer"
* Gifter must provide new owner with a Damage Disclosure Statement, and both parties must sign it
* Gifter must remove license plates and give the title to the new owner

The recipient must bring the title and the following to a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office:

* Completed and notarized title application
* Completed Declaration of Eligible Risk
* Completed and notarized Highway Use Tax Exemption Certificate
* Valid NC driver’s license or state-issued ID
* Proof of insurance
* $40 title fee (plus $15 late fee if more than 28 days have passed since ownership was transferred)
* Payment for the Highway Use Tax, if applicable

Note: Raleigh and Charlotte locations offer Instant Titles in person and through the mail for $75. Check online to see if you’re eligible.

You can register your car at this time, too. Remember, registration requires additional steps and fees, and perhaps an emissions inspection.

Donating a VehicleTransfer-Title

Donating a vehicle is a great way to give back, just be sure to do your homework first. It’s a good idea to consult a tax attorney, too.

Inheriting a VehicleTransfer-Title

The title transfer process for an inherited vehicle depends on the presence of an administrator for the deceased. Consulting a probate attorney is always a good move.

Appointed Administrator

* Administrator must assign the title to you and have it notarized
* Administrator must record odometer reading or provide an Odometer Disclosure Statement to sign if the vehicle is less than 10 years old
* Complete a Damage Disclosure Statement with the administrator
* Obtain a certified copy of the letters of administration or executrix from the administrator
* Complete and have notarized a title application

Visit a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office with the above documents and:

* Your current driver’s license or state-issued ID
* $40 title fee
* Highway Use Tax, if the vehicle is not part of a will or intestacy

No Appointed Administrator

Bring the following to a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office:

* Title (properly assigned if you are not the surviving spouse)
* Completed Form MVR-317 (not available online)
* Odometer Disclosure Statement (if vehicle is less than 10 years old)
* Completed Damage Disclosure Statement
* Driver’s license or state-issued ID
* $40 titling fee
* Highway Use Tax (if the vehicle is not part of a will or intestacy)

You may also want to make registration changes at this time. Remember, surviving spouses do not have to pay a fee to correct existing license plates, but everyone will need to show proof of insurance.

Making Name CorrectionsTransfer-Title

Changing a Name
First, complete and get notarized a Corrected or Substitute Title Application. Then visit a Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office with that application and the following:

* Current title
* Accurate odometer reading
* Driver’s license or state-issued ID
* Proof of insurance
* Title correction fee of $15

Vital records, such as a marriage certificate or divorce decree, can be helpful when you need to prove your name change. If you have misplaced yours, you can order a replacement.

Deleting a Name
First, complete and get notarized a Corrected or Substitute Title Application. Next, complete and have notarized an Affidavit of Facts. Then visit your Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office with those documents and:

* Current title
* Odometer reading (if vehicle is less than 10 years old)
* Both parties’ driver’s licenses or state-issued IDs
* Proof of insurance
* $15 title correction fee

Adding a Name
First, complete and get notarized a Corrected or Substitute Title Application. Next, complete and have notarized an Affidavit of Facts. Then visit your Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office with those documents and:

* Current title
* Odometer reading (if vehicle is less than 10 years old)
* Both parties’ driver’s licenses or state-issued IDs
* Proof of insurance
* $15 title correction fee