Drivers must apply for a Delaware car title through the state Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) before they may register their new or used automobiles. Under state law, drivers must obtain auto titles for all motor vehicles, motorcycles, mobile homes, house trailers, truck tractors and mopeds. Since vehicle titles establish a driver or business as the vehicle’s legal owner, car owners must title their vehicles immediately after purchase.

As such, vehicle owners must apply for a certificate of title within 30 days of purchasing a new or used vehicle, and failure to obtain a car title in DE before the deadline results in a penalty fee. Additionally, drivers may register their vehicles at the same time if they meet all registration prerequisites. To learn more about how to get car title certificates and the ways in which titles relate to vehicle registrations, review the sections below.

Where to Apply for a Car Title in Delaware

To apply for a new car title in DE, a vehicle owner must complete a titling application and submit it in person at a DMV office. To do so, motorists who need to get car titles must visit a local DMV branch in the counties of New Castle, Kent or Sussex, immediately after purchasing a new or used vehicle, or no later than 30 days after the vehicle’s purchase date.

If a car owner cannot apply for a Delaware car title on his or her own, a different person may visit a DMV office to submit the paperwork on his or her behalf. Furthermore, a vehicle owner must obtain his or her pink slip (otherwise known as an auto title) from a DMV office regardless of whether the vehicle is new or used.

Nonetheless, a dealer submits the vehicle title paperwork to the DMV if a buyer purchases the vehicle from a car dealership.

The Delaware Auto Title Application

When getting car title certificates, motorists must complete an Application for Title (Form MV-212), which they may obtain online or in person at a DMV office. Drivers may complete the DE title for car application when applying for a vehicle registration as well, since the DMV uses the same form to issue titles and registration. To complete the application to receive a new or used car title, vehicle owners must provide the following information:

  • The name, address and email address of the applicant.
  • A description of the vehicle, including the vehicle’s odometer brand, odometer reading, title brand and vehicle identification number (VIN).
  • The vehicle’s make, model, year, body style, color and fuel type.
  • The automobile’s registration weight, yearly fee, gross vehicle weight rating and purchase date.
  • The name of the vehicle inspector and the date of the vehicle inspection.
  • Lien information (if applicable).

All vehicle owners and co-owners must sign the DMV car title application before they may submit it to the DMV. Owners must include their driver license number and date of birth as well. If submitting a Delaware car title application in a corporation’s name, an officer of the corporation must sign the application.

Documents You Must Provide When Applying for a New Car Title in Delaware

In addition to completing a vehicle title application, a car owner must submit other supporting documentation as well. To obtain a Delaware certificate of title, a motorist must submit the following information to the DMV:

  • A Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin or an original out-of-state title.
  • The car dealer’s bill of sale.
  • Proof of identity, including the vehicle owner’s driver license or two proofs of state residency.
  • Proof of liability insurance (original documents only).
  • Proof of completing a vehicle inspection.

Note: If applying for an auto title on a company vehicle, the applicant must provide a copy of the company’s business license.

What is a Delaware car registration?

Drivers cannot operate a new or used motor vehicle until they obtain auto registration documentation and a title certificate from the state DMV. Although drivers may apply for DE car registration certificates and title documents simultaneously using the Application for Title (Form MV-212), each document serves its own purpose, and drivers cannot operate a motor vehicle without obtaining both documents.

Car registration in Delaware, for instance, shows that the DMV permits vehicle owners to operate the vehicle on state roadways. When drivers apply for a new car registration, they must present proof of auto insurance, pay vehicle registration fees and submit proof of completing a vehicle inspection.

Note: Drivers must renew their DMV car registration documents during the vehicle registration renewal period. Unlike car registration documents, drivers only need to obtain a new title whenever the vehicle changes ownership.

What is the difference between a car title and a vehicle registration in Delaware?

The main difference between a motor vehicle registration and a title certificate is that a title document serves as legal proof which establishes you as the vehicle owner. DMV car registration documentation, however, allows you to operate your new or used vehicle on public roads and often comes with registration materials such as license plates. You need to present your DE auto registration documentation if a police officer pulls you over for any reason.

Furthermore, you cannot get car registration in Delaware unless you first apply for a vehicle title. However, you may complete the two transactions at the same time using the Application for Title (Form MV-212), as long as you can present proof of auto insurance and a vehicle inspection certificate during your visit to the DMV.

Car Title Costs in Delaware

The Delaware car title costs are calculated according to a variety of factors that pertain to the specifications of a vehicle. Thus, applicants may be required to pay significantly different fees for titling their cars in the state. Furthermore, different procedures will include other fees. For instance, a car title replacement costs $50 in DE.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 10 2020.