How to Transfer a Car Title in California?

Transferring Your Car Title in California

When there is a change of ownership of a car, the state of California requires you to go through a couple of steps to acquire the title. If you don’t know how to transfer a car title in California, then TFC Title Loans will help you!

How to Transfer a Car Title in California

TFC Title Loans has been one of the leading auto title loan lenders for more than 20 years. We consider ourselves experts when it comes to great Car Title Loans and title transfers. We believe buying a car should not be a stressful process, so helping you learn how to transfer ownership of a car title in California will leave you with one less headache.

Buying the Vehicle

Buying from a Dealer

When you go through a dealership, they cover all the fees and paperwork that you need to transfer the car title to your name.

Buying from a Private Individual

To properly transfer the title loan when you buy from an individual visit the motor vehicles DMV website, the following steps should be taken:

  • Verify the seller has signed off on the title and completed all of the required fields.
  • Verify there is no lienholder, or that the lienholder has signed off on the car title.
  • Check the odometer and match it to the verification provided by the seller.
  • Complete a smog check. If the car is older than 4 years, have the emissions checked. If the car is 4 years or younger, there will be an $8 smog check fee.
  • Take all the documents to the DMV. Pay the $15 vehicle transfer fee and all use tax fees within 30 days of the purchase date.

Also, make sure you notify the CA DMV you have purchased the vehicle within 5 days of taking possession.

Selling the Vehicle

When you are selling your vehicle, you want to help the process for your buyer. Follow these steps to allow for an easy transfer:

  • Provide the title of the vehicle record to the buyer, making sure to sign it (if you do not have the title, apply for a duplicate title).
  • If you have any liens, have the lienholder sign off before giving the title over.
  • How to Transfer a Car Title in California
  • Fill out the odometer reading if the vehicle is less than 10 years old. If there is no space for the odometer reading on the title, you’ll have to complete the Vehicle/Vessel Title Transfer Form. This is only available at the CA department of motor vehicles offices, or by calling 800-777-0133.
  • Provide the buyer with a smog check certification. It cannot be older than 90 days.
  • Submit a Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability form within 5 days of the sale date. You can use an online form.

If you don’t need to verify the odometer reading during the vehicle sale, use a Bill of Sale instead of the transfer form. Keep a copy for yourself and give one to the original buyer.

Transferring the Vehicle as a Gift

The types of gifts fall into two different categories:

  • Family or Inheritance
  • Gift or Donation

The transfer process is very similar to selling the vehicle and has only minor differences.

Family or Inheritance

Family members that qualify (step, half, and adopted included) are:

  • Parents
  • Children
  • Grandparents
  • Grandchildren
  • Spouses
  • Siblings
  • Domestic partners

Any other family members qualify under the Gift or Donation section. When you transfer to a family member, you do not need to provide a smog test or pay the use tax. The only exception for this might be your siblings, in which case a smog certification may be required if one is due.

When transferring to a family member, follow these steps:

  • Have the recipient of the vehicle sign the title.
  • Submit a Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability form within 5 days of the sale date.

Gift or Donation

The steps are the same as listed above. The only difference would be that you may need to provide smog certification, which must be current and no older than 90 days. If you are donating to an organization, you may be eligible for tax exemption.

Receiving the Vehicle as a Gift

Receiving the Vehicle from a Family Member

Follow these steps:

  • Verify the person giving you the vehicle has filled out the title properly.
  • Verify there is no lienholder, or that the lienholder has signed off on the car title.
  • Sign the title.
  • Check the mileage and odometer disclosure statements.
  • Complete a smog check, if applicable. Adult sibling transfers may require an emissions certification.
  • How to Transfer a Car Title in California
  • Complete and submit Statement of Facts for use tax and smog waivers.
  • Pay the $8 smog transfer fee and the $15 title transfer fee.

You must submit transfer fees to the CA DMV within 5 days of the transfer date.

Receiving the Vehicle as a Gift or Donation

Follow the same steps as above, adding in the completion of the smog certification. When you complete the Statement of Facts, you may have to indicate the current value of the vehicle for a donation.

Car Title Loans with TFC Title Loans

If you have an existing auto title loan with TFC, you will have to pay off the entirety of the loan before you can make a title loan transfer. If you wish to acquire an auto title pink slip loan with TFC, give us a call or apply now! Transferring a title to us is simple and quick! Now you know How to Transfer a Car Title in California!

This article was brought to you by TFC Title Loans, we try to bring to you the most informative information. If you are interested in getting an auto title loan near me, we are able to help you with our large referral network.

We will help you to get the most money by using the equity that you have in your vehicle, the application is fast and we can provide you with same-day funding.

All of our referral partners are in compliance with the CFPB. We will help you to get the money that you need but from a trusted and reliable title lender.

Need Cash Now? Get Approved In Minutes!

How Much Cash Can i Get?

DISCLAIMER: As our policy to make sure you know what we do and what are our limitations, we offer you these disclaimers. We are NOT A LENDER and we do not make short term cash loans or credit decisions. We are a referral service and work only with licensed lenders/brokers.

We may act as the broker for the loan and may not be the direct lender. Loan proceeds are intended primarily for personal, family and household purposes. We do not offer or service student loans.

*Loan amounts by the lenders vary based on your vehicle and your ability to repay the loan.

*Since we do not lend money directly we cannot offer you a solicitation for a loan, except in the state of California. In all other serviced states we WILL match you with a lender based on the information you provide on this website. We will not charge you for this service and our service is not available in all states. States that are serviced by this Web Site may change from time to time and without notice. Personal Unsecured Loans and Auto Title Loans are not available in all states and all areas.

*Auto Title Loan companies typically do not have pre-payment penalties, but we cannot guarantee that every lender meets this standard. Small Business Loans typically do have pre-payment penalties and occasionally will use your car as collateral to secure the loan.

*All lenders are responsible for their own interest rates and payment terms. TFC Title Loans has no control over these rates or payments. Use of the work competitive or reasonable does not mean affordable and borrowers should use their own discretion when working directly with the lender.

*The amount of people who applied for a loan and we helped and those who received a loan is not the same. We cannot guarantee we will find a lender who will fund you.Just because you give us information on this web site, in no way do we guarantee you will be approved for a car title loan or any other type of loan. Not all lenders can provide loan amounts you may see on this web site because loan amounts are limited by state law and/or the lender. Some lenders may require you to use a GPS locator device on your car, active all the time. They may or may not pay for this or charge you for this. This is up to the lender and we have no control over this policy of the lender. Typically larger loans or higher risk loans use a GPS.

*In some circumstances faxing may be required. Use of your cell phone to receive updates is optional.

*Car Title Loans are expensive and you may have other ways to get funding that is less expensive. These types of loans are meant to provide you with short term financing to solve immediate cash needs and should not be considered a long term solution. Residents of some states may not be eligible for a loan. Rejections for loans are not disclosed to our firm and you may want to contact the lender directly.

*Car Title Loan lenders are usually licensed by the State in which you reside. You should consult directly with these regulatory agencies to make sure your lender is licensed and in compliance. These agencies are there to protect you and we advise making sure any lender you receive money from is fully licensed.

*Trading Financial Credit, LLC dba TFC Title Loans, Car Title Loans California, Dineromax. If you are using a screen reader and are having problems using this website, please give us a call at 1-844-242-3543 for immediate assistance.

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