1.

If you have purchased a vehicle with an out-of-state title or are moving to a different state with your vehicle, you need to transfer the certificate of title in person or by mail. General requirements for this procedure include filling out your new state’s title application form, submitting proof of your vehicle ownership (such as a completed bill of sale) and paying the applicable fees, such as titling fees, registration costs and state taxes. In addition, many state DMVs require out-of-state cars to undergo vehicle identification number (VIN) inspections. Our digital how-to guide contains everything you need to know to transfer your title quickly and easily. You will get step-by-step instructions on the process, as well as information about how to complete other titling procedures, such as replacing your title.

2. By Mail

Some DMVs allow eligible residents to transfer an out-of-state title by mail. However, be mindful that this procedure is not typically offered to all vehicle owners in each state. Mail-in applications are typically reserved for drivers who are out-of-state or members of the military. If this method is available to you, you will be required to mail in a completed application form along with documents that prove you own your vehicle and that it has passed a VIN inspection. Moreover, you will need to include an acceptable payment method for the transfer fees, such as a check or money order. Note that mail-in requests can be delayed if an application features incorrect or incomplete information. Also, processing times may increase based on the amount of applications the DMV receives.

3. In Person

Depending on your state, you may only be able to complete an out-of-state title transfer by visiting a DMV office in person. In general, this is required so that your car can undergo a vehicle identification number inspection. During your visit to the DMV, you must complete the proper application form and submit documents proving your vehicle ownership. Additionally, you will be asked to pay for the applicable fees to transfer your out-of-state title. Because you will be dealing with credentials issued by different state DMVs, it is important to be prepared for the transaction in order to prevent long wait times or potential mistakes. If you do not bring in the correct paperwork, you may have to visit the DMV office at a later date to reapply.


Performing an out of state car title transfer in Pennsylvania is necessary for vehicle owner who bring a nonresident vehicle within the state. To transfer an out of state car title in PA, motorists will be required to submit the necessary documents and fee payments through a motor vehicle office of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT).

Note that, when finalizing the out of state car title transfer process, applicants will also be required to register their vehicles at the same time. Get more information on how to perform an out of state car title transfer in Pennsylvania by reading the following sections.

What is a cross-state car title transfer in Pennsylvania?

A cross state car title transfer is a titling procedure reserved for vehicle owners who have transported an out of state vehicle into Pennsylvania. After completing the procedure to re-title a car in another state DMV’s database under such circumstances, the invalid title will be converted to a title certificate issued by the PennDOT, which will qualify the vehicle for a new car registration and allow the owner to operate the vehicle legally within the state.

When is an out-of-state car title transfer necessary in Pennsylvania?

PennDOT will complete a title transfer only if the vehicle in question is already titled by another state DMV. Therefore, you will only be required to complete a title transfer if you are a new resident with a nonresident vehicle or you have obtained a previously titled vehicle from an out of state seller. If you bring a new vehicle within the state on a manufacturer’s certificate of origin you will be required to apply for a new title with the PennDOT instead of finalizing an out of state auto title transfer.

Information and Documents Needed for an Out-of-State Title Transfer in Pennsylvania

Providing the documents needed for an out of state title transfer in Pennsylvania is one of the more important steps in the process of transferring an out of state title. To finalize the process of transferring an out of state car title in PA and to register a nonresident vehicle after relocating within the state, motorists will need the following documents:

  • The out-of-state title certificate
  • A completed title certificate application
  • Proof of a valid car insurance policy
  • A document verifying the vehicle identification number
  • A safety and emissions inspection document, if required
  • A power of attorney form, if applicable
  • A valid driving license or a state ID card

Note: In situations where an out of state title is held by a lienholder, vehicle owners will either be required to request the PennDOT to acquire the title from the financial institution or comply with their lienholder’s requirements.

When transferring an out of state vehicle title after purchasing a vehicle from an out of state seller, car owners will be required to provide additional paperwork. In such cases, motorists will need a properly reassigned title bearing the seller’s signature and the odometer disclosure statement, as well as a valid bill of sale to prove that the transaction took place. If the vehicle was received as a gift, on the other hand, applicants will also need to fill out a gift affidavit and proof that they are the new owner of the vehicle.

Steps for Completing an Out-of-State Title Transfer in Pennsylvania as a New Resident

Finalizing a Pennsylvania out of state title transfer in person is currently the only available method of titling and registering a nonresident vehicle, since the PennDOT requires authorized agents to verify the submitted paperwork on the spot. Therefore, the steps to complete an out of state title transfer as a new resident include making a visit to a nearby PennDOT office, submitting the necessary documents and paying the applicable fees.

After completing an out of state title transfer as a new state resident, you will receive your new title by mail as soon as the department approved your application and manufactures your new title.

Note: If you record a lien on your title certificate, the PennDOT will mail the title to your financing institution rather than your home.

Out-of-State Title Transfers in Pennsylvania After Buying or Selling a Vehicle

To complete the process of transferring an out of state title after getting a new car from outside of the state, vehicle owners will be required to abide by the same regulations that apply to new state residents. Therefore, completing an in person out of state title transfer after buying a vehicle includes the same application steps, such as making an office visit and submitting the necessary paperwork to an authorized PennDOT agent.

Apart from completing an out of state title transfer after buying a car, you will also be required to initiate a title transfer if you have received a vehicle under other circumstances. For example, transferring an out of state vehicle title is also mandatory if you have inherited a vehicle form a deceased relative. In such cases, however, you may be required to submit additional documents such as a death certificate or the relative’s last will and testament to prove you are the new vehicle owner.

Cross-State Car Title Transfer Fees in Pennsylvania

Vehicle owners must pay the cost of transferring an out of state car title in order to obtain new documents for their motor vehicles. The price of a cross state car title transfer in Pennsylvania will include several types of fees, since the PennDOT completes the titling and registration process at the same time. Therefore, keep in mind that in addition to the standard $53 titling fee, you will also be required to pay for new license plates.

Cross state car title transfer fees will also include a sales tax payment in the event that the out-of-state vehicle has been titled in your name less than six months before moving to Pennsylvania. If you are recording a lien on your vehicle when you perform a title transfer, you will also be charged an additional fee.

Last updated on Friday, December 21 2018.

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