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Old 12-14-2010, 09:32 PM   #1
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Default Who goes to the DMV when they buy a car?

The owner of the last Miata I tried to buy and the current potential buyer of one of my Geo Metros both insisted that we had to go to the DMV to get the title signed over. I don't get it? I have purchased 6 cars in the past year and a half and didn't do that. Where are people getting this from?
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Old 12-14-2010, 09:55 PM   #2
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You don't need to go to a DMV, they *must* get the title signed and notorized before you can take legal ownership of the car. (but you already know that) Since the DMV generally staffs a notary public or eight, they don't have to put much effort into thinking about where to find one themselves.

A motivated seller will have the title signed and notarized before he finds a buyer; that way: you hand over cash, he hands over title, you both go your seperate ways.

When I bought my second miata, he suggested we go to the DMV to get the title transferred. I decided we would go to the bank instead.

The ADVANTAGE of going to the DMV to get the title transferred, is that the previous owner gets his license plate(s) back immediately.
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Old 12-14-2010, 10:10 PM   #3
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I've never had to notarize a title. They sign, I sign, bring to DMV, pay money and they give me a registration and send me a new title in the mail. I know you have to in some states, though. It's just easier for some people to go to the DMV since that way you're not missing anything. Sometimes you need a bill of sale, too.
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Old 12-14-2010, 10:22 PM   #4
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It is a good measure to avoid potential liability to witness the DMV transfer the title.

I sold/gave a car to a broke buddy of mine...

Many months later, I received a letter from the city or county saying they were going to impound 'my' car because they saw from where it was parked that it was not registered (think he threw an old tag on or maybe it was tag-less). When I called in to get it cleared up, I was lectured that what I did was dumb, and how if he had crashed, I could have had more annoying issues to deal with.
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Old 12-14-2010, 10:43 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 94mx5red View Post
It is a good measure to avoid potential liability to witness the DMV transfer the title.

I sold/gave a car to a broke buddy of mine...

Many months later, I received a letter from the city or county saying they were going to impound 'my' car because they saw from where it was parked that it was not registered (think he threw an old tag on or maybe it was tag-less). When I called in to get it cleared up, I was lectured that what I did was dumb, and how if he had crashed, I could have had more annoying issues to deal with.
A bill of sale written on the back of an old McDonald's receipt with a piece of charcoal (signed of course) would have gotten you out of all of that trouble. I just don't get the need for a notary or the DMV.

What would have happened if you just loaned a friend your car and he wrecked it? I hate the fact that you need get lawyers/notary/national guard involved every time you open the refrigerator or take a ****?

Edit:
When you get the title notarized and the guy goes on his way how does it prove that you sold him the car. Couldn't he throw the title in the trash and claim you still own it (if he killed someone with it or something). I would think the signed BOS would be much better proof.
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Old 12-14-2010, 10:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fooger03 View Post

The ADVANTAGE of going to the DMV to get the title transferred, is that the previous owner gets his license plate(s) back immediately.
I don't have tags on the car.

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Old 12-14-2010, 10:56 PM   #7
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Found this on the NC DMV website (the guy buying my car is from NC):

To transfer the title with the seller:

1. Make sure the buyer provides any applicable lien information. You’ll need this information when you complete the Title Application.
2. Complete, sign, date, and have notarized the title with the seller. If the vehicle is less than 10 years old, make sure the seller records the accurate odometer reading on the title or provides you with an Odometer Disclosure Statement before adding your signature.
3. Obtain a Damage Disclosure Statement from the seller and sign it once you fully understand it.
4. Once the seller removes his license plates and gives you the title (it’s best not to part ways until you have it), bring it and the following to your Vehicle & License Plate Renewal Office:
* A completed and notarized Title Application.
* A completed Declaration of Eligible Risk.
* Any applicable lien release information.
* Your valid NC driver’s license or state-issued ID card.
* Proof of insurance.
* The titling fee of $40 (see below). Remember to tack on an extra $15 if you’ve missed the 28-day deadline.
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Old 12-14-2010, 10:59 PM   #8
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Certain states (Louisiana, for example) do require that a notary public is present to transfer the title. That's how I ended up sitting in some old dude's den at 11:30 PM when I purchased my Miata from someone near Baton Rouge.

But if your state doesn't require it, I can't imagine why you would bother. Sign the title over, fill out a standard AS-IS bill of sale, and go on your merry way.
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Old 12-14-2010, 11:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trickerz View Post
i've never had to notarize a title. They sign, i sign, bring to dmv, pay money and they give me a registration and send me a new title in the mail. I know you have to in some states, though. It's just easier for some people to go to the dmv since that way you're not missing anything. Sometimes you need a bill of sale, too.
+1
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Old 12-14-2010, 11:32 PM   #10
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Only time I've gone to the DMV is when someone is selling an expired tagged car and telling me there are no fees or penalties.

In which case I offer to go to the dmv and if it is the case I'll buy it on the spot. Otherwise they pay all the penalties (and in CA you get RAPED in fees) and then buy the car.

I got a bit screwed over on my bike. When I bought it the tags were expired. I didn't have time to go to DMV, so the seller offered to do it for me. When I got the bike from him he handed me a DMV printout/receipt that he paid the late fees.

Well turns out he paid about half of em, and I got screwed by about 150 bux. I let it go, but next time I won't be screwed over this way again.
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Old 12-15-2010, 12:19 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
Certain states (Louisiana, for example) do require that a notary public is present to transfer the title. That's how I ended up sitting in some old dude's den at 11:30 PM when I purchased my Miata from someone near Baton Rouge.

But if your state doesn't require it, I can't imagine why you would bother. Sign the title over, fill out a standard AS-IS bill of sale, and go on your merry way.
So you drive 1000 miles, pickup a car and go back home. Two days later you go to the DMV to get all your paperwork done and they say "You need to go back to the seller to get this notarized or you do not legally own this and the car must be crushed". Sounds screwed up to me. I don't see how it could possibly be a requirement. I bought a Geo Metro on Xmas day last year. No way I could have gotten something notarized that day.
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Old 12-15-2010, 10:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmcelwee View Post
So you drive 1000 miles, pickup a car and go back home. Two days later you go to the DMV to get all your paperwork done and they say "You need to go back to the seller to get this notarized or you do not legally own this and the car must be crushed". Sounds screwed up to me. I don't see how it could possibly be a requirement. I bought a Geo Metro on Xmas day last year. No way I could have gotten something notarized that day.
It is screwed up. If my seller hadn't happened to know a friend of a friend who was a notary and was willing to help us out at 11:00 PM I'd have been out of luck.
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Old 12-15-2010, 06:56 PM   #13
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The above is why a motivated seller will have the title signed and notarized before showing buyers. The only person whose signature needs to be notarized is the seller. A title with a notarized signature of the registered owner is the equivalent of a check made out to "cash".
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Old 12-15-2010, 07:16 PM   #14
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Seriously?? I guess it's different in different states. When I bought my miata all I did was sign two bills of sale, give the guy a cashier's check, and he gave me the title(signed) and keys. He even filled up the gas tank for me on the test drive.
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