For any type of vehicle exchange, a title must be transferred
A certificate of title issued by the state of Connecticut is a document that proves legal ownership of a vehicle. A title must be obtained when an individual purchases a new vehicle. A title transfer must also be completed when a used vehicle is sold or gifted, or when a vehicle changes hands as a result of the death of the vehicle's owner. The requirement of a Motor Vehicle Title Certificate is waived for vehicles that were manufactured before 1981.
OBTAINING A TITLE FOR A NEW VEHICLE:
For new vehicles, the licensed dealer that sold the vehicle typically will accept and submit the required titling information and fees on behalf of the buyer. However, buyers wishing to handle the titling independently can do so. Those interested in applying for a new title without the dealer's assistance should refer to the Title information page and the Title and Registration Frequently Asked Questions documents on the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) website.
TRANSFERRING A TITLE ON A USED VEHICLE:
Sale/Purchase or Gift of a Used Vehicle
When you purchase a used vehicle, or obtain one as a gift, the title must be legally transferred into your name. This is done by obtaining the following documents, and submitting them along with the appropriate fees to the DMV office:
- The current title, with the assignment completed by the seller or donor (signing the title over to you), and notarized.
- If the title does not indicate the date of sale and selling price, a completed Bill of Sale, signed by both current and new owner and notarized, is required.
- If applicable, the original or copy of the vehicle's financing statement or security agreement.
Along with the appropriate transfer of title documents above, you will need to submit the following fees:
- $25.00 title fee.
- Other fees, which may vary. Contact your local DMV office to confirm the total fees that will be charged.
Acceptable methods of payment are usually personal checks, cashier's checks, money orders or cash (do not send cash through the mail).
Transfer of Title Following Death of Vehicle Owner
In the event of the death of the vehicle owner, the title is often transferred to the heirs or someone else identified in the owner's will. The procedures and fees for this type of transfer are similar to those outlined above. In addition, it is important to determine how the estate of the deceased has been settled by the heir(s).
For more information on title transfers following the death of a vehicle owner, refer to the DMV website, contact the local DMV office, or call 860-263-5700 (If calling from outside Connecticut or within Hartford area) or 800-842-8222 (if calling from any other part of Connecticut).
Appropriate title transfer documents and fees should be submitted to the local DMV office or mailed to the headquarters office:
Department of Motor Vehicles
60 State Street
Wethersfield, CT 06161
- Contact the local DMV office if you wish to add, remove or change a name on a vehicle title for reason other than those discussed above.
- If there is an existing lien on the vehicle, there will be additional requirements for transferring the title.
- A valid title provides proof of ownership of the vehicle. However, remember that a title transfer does not entitle the new owner(s) to legally operate the vehicle. For this, refer to the appropriate license and registration information.