A certificate of title in West Virginia is defined as a legal document that confirms ownership of a vehicle. A WV DMV car title must be obtained for every vehicle that is to be registered in the state. If a vehicle title has not been established because it is a new car or a used car without previous title certification, residents must follow the appropriate procedure to obtain one.

Getting a title for car ownership is a simple process, but drivers must understand the differences between getting car title documentation and obtaining a car registration. The procedure for acquiring an auto title in WV is fully explained in the sections below.

Where to Apply for a Car Title in West Virginia

Often called a pink slip, a car title is a vital document for drivers. Motorists wondering how to get car title documentation may apply for one in person by visiting one of two dozen WV DMV regional offices. Alternatively, you can also apply for a new car title by mail if there are no liens on the vehicle.

The West Virginia Auto Title Application

Whether you need a new car title or a WV used car title, each can be obtained by filling out the West Virginia Application for Certificate of Title (Form DMV-1-TR). To get car title approval, fill out this form with personal details such as name and mailing address.

If the vehicle was previously titled, you will need to submit the existing car title with the application. If the vehicle has a lien, be sure to include the full address and zip code of the lien holder. A West Virginia car title application will also require the following information:

  • Vehicle make, year and body style
  • Odometer reading for vehicles 10 years old or newer
  • VIN
  • Weight
  • Purchase price
  • If applicable, trade-in information, plate transfer information and dealer certification

Make sure your car title application has all the necessary signatures. Note that any vehicle title that has more than one owner with the names joined by the word “and” must be signed by both owners for the sale or transfer of title to be legal.

Either deliver your auto title application in person to your nearest WV DMV office, or mail it with a check or money order for appropriate fees made payable to “DMV” to the address that is shared below.

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

When getting car title certification in West Virginia, certain documents must be included in your application. Most importantly, the existing auto title should be submitted when you apply and be signed on the back by the seller or sellers. The buyer must fill out sections 1 and 7 completely on the vehicle title, and all information must match exactly across these sections.

The specific forms and documentation needed to get car titles in WV are dictated by your individual situation. Obtain these types of car titles by following these directions:

  • New Car Title: Use the Application for Certificate of Title for a Motor Vehicle (Form DMV-1-TR).
  • Used Vehicle Title: Use the Application for Certificate of Title for a Motor Vehicle (Form DMV-1-TR). Include signed title; include a notarized bill of sale and provide a copy of the buyer’s and seller’s driver licenses.
  • Vehicle Title on a Gift Transaction or Trade-In: Use the Affidavit of Transfer of Ownership Without Consideration (Form DMV-5-TR).

What is a West Virginia Car Registration?

Vehicle registration is required on all vehicles, trailers and recreational vehicles moved upon a highway. West Virginia motor vehicle registration provides you with a license plate and registration card. DMV car registration requires adequate auto insurance, so be sure you have secured insurance on the vehicle before applying for your registration.

West Virginia car registration must be obtained within 10 days of purchasing a vehicle, and the vehicle must also be inspected within the same timeframe. New residents must get motor vehicle registration and a new car title within 30 days of relocating to the state. Whether renewing or applying for new car registration, be prepared to pay associated fees. Residents can renew car registration via mail or at a WV DMV Now kiosk.

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

The WV car registration process is different from getting a vehicle title, but the two are often obtained simultaneously. Auto registration ensures that you are a legitimate and licensed motorist who is legally approved to operate the vehicle you are driving.

A car title provides proof of ownership and you will only get car title certification once upon purchasing a car. Car registration, on the other hand, is something that you must renew on a yearly basis. In short, the certificate of title legitimizes the car, while vehicle registration legitimizes operation of the car.

To obtain DMV car title documents or a certificate of registration by mail, use the following address:

Division of Motor Vehicles
5707 MacCorkle Ave. SE
P.O. Box 17710
Charleston, WV 25317

Car Title Cost in West Virginia

In West Virginia, the cost of a new car title depends on the vehicles purchase price. A new title for a vehicle with a purchase price over $500 will be $15, plus a six percent sales tax, while a title for a vehicle under $500 will be $30.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 10 2020.