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Title Transfers or obtaining a New Certificate of Title in Ohio

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A certificate of title issued by the state of Ohio 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. In Ohio, a vehicle should be registered and titled in the buyer's name in 30 business days to avoid penalties.


For new vehicles, the licensed dealer that sold the vehicle is required to accept and submit the required titling information and fees on behalf of the buyer. Ensure that you receive the receipt for the title with your name from the dealer within 30 business days. Those interested in applying for a new title should refer to the Vehicle Titles Overview page and the Vehicle Titles and Registration Frequently Asked Questions on the Ohio Department of Public Safety website.


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 your local Clerk of Courts Title Office:

  1. The current title, with the assignment completed by the seller or donor (signing the title over to you). The title must include the federal odometer disclosure, if the vehicle is less than ten years old.
  2. 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.
  3. An Odometer Disclosure Statement, if the title does not include this information and the vehicle is less than ten years old. #Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin.
  4. Sales tax on the purchase price.
  5. Payment for title fees. Lien notation, if applicable.


Along with the appropriate transfer of title documents above, the buyer will need to submit the following fees:
  1. Fee of $15 (plus $5 for each recorded lien).
  2. Sales and use tax to be paid in cash, certified check or money order to the title office before a new title can be issued.
We would advise you to contact your county clerks office for payment requirements.

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). In some cases, the heirs may need to complete an Affidavit of Heirship, and provide copies of both the death certificate and the will (or a notarized statement of its contents), if there is one. For more information on title transfers following the death of a vehicle owner, contact the Ohio Clerk of Courts Auto Title Offices, or call 614-752-7500.


Appropriate title transfer documents and fees should be submitted to the Clerk of Courts Title Office.

Additional Information

  • Contact the Clerk of Courts Title 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. Contact the Clerk of Courts Title Office for more information.
  • 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.

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