Without a title, there is no proof that you own the car you’re driving. Whenever a car is bought or sold, the title must be transferred from the original owner to the new owner (the buyer). In the state or Arizona, the process only requires a few steps, but it is crucial that they are completed correctly or the DMV will not recognize the title transfer.
Steps for transferring a car title in Arizona
The state of Arizona requires that both the buyer and seller complete some specific steps in order for a title to be transferred from the original owner (seller) to the new owner (buyer). In fact, the state actually recommends that both the buyer and seller appear together at the DMV to ensure the process goes smoothly. However, it can be completed separately if necessary.
Step 1: Sign the title
The first step is to have the seller sign the title. It must also be notarized. Note that if there is more than one owner (more than one name on the title), both owners must sign the title and have it notarized. Note that if there is a lien on the car, the owner must sign a lien release (one for each lien). Each release must also be notarized. Note that if a buyer purchases a car with a lien on it and no release, the buyer is then responsible for paying the lien.
In addition, the seller must remove all license plates, as these cannot be given to the buyer. The seller should check to see if a plate credit or refund is possible. Finally, the seller has to complete a notice of sale within 10 days. It can be found on the back of the vehicle registration.
- Not having all individuals named on the title sign for the transfer.
- Not having the signed title notarized.
- Not having a lien release signed and notarized for each lien on the car.
Step 2: Complete forms and visit the DMV
Next, the buyer must complete the Title and Registration Application. Note that the buyer must register the car in his or her name when transferring the title, and the applicable taxes and fees will apply (these depend on the make and model in question and will be assessed at the time of title transfer). Note that the buyer has to submit the form and the signed and notarized title within 15 days of the sale, or risk penalties.
Step 3: Pay the fees
The state of Arizona charges several fees during the title transfer process. The transfer fee itself is only $4.00. However, there is an additional $8.00 fee for registration, and an additional $1.50 fee for air quality research. This does not include the vehicle license tax, which will be assessed on the value of the car in question and must be paid at the same time.
For more information on the process of transferring a car title in Arizona, visit the state’s DMV website.