If you’re buying or selling a car or mobile home, then you’ll need to deal with some paperwork, including the transfer of the vehicle title. The title is a legal document that proves you own that piece of property. It’s essential that the document is error-free. Otherwise, the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) will not recognize the title. Both the seller and the purchaser need to complete certain steps to complete the transfer of the title.
Understanding the Legal Requirements
DMV procedures and requirements vary from state to state. In Arizona, the MVD requires purchasers of vehicles to apply for a title within 15 days of the purchase. You must take the application to an MVD location or an authorized third-party provider, such as Arizona Motor Vehicle Express. If the application misses the 15-day deadline, then a penalty may be assessed. The same deadline applies to the transfer of a mobile home title.
Identifying the Seller’s Responsibilities
The seller is responsible for getting the title notarized. The seller must sign the title in the presence of a notary public. If there is more than one current owner of the vehicle, all individuals whose names appear on the title must sign the title before a notary public. If the vehicle title has a lien on it, the owner must sign a lien release in the presence of a notary public—one for every lien listed. Purchasers should understand that if they possess the title without the lien release, they are then responsible for paying off that lien. Lastly, the seller must complete the notice of sale within 10 days.
Identifying the Buyer’s Responsibilities
The buyer must go to the MVD or the authorized third-party provider within 15 days of the sale. The buyer should bring the Title and Registration Application, signed and notarized vehicle title, and lien release forms, if applicable. Buyers must submit all of the necessary forms, along with the applicable fees. Fees generally include:
- Transfer fee
- Registration fee
- Air quality research fee
- Vehicle license tax
The fees are subject to change over time, so check with the office before going there. The vehicle license tax is assessed at the time of the visit.
Completing the Necessary Steps for a Mobile Home Title Transfer
Some of the requirements for transferring a vehicle and mobile home title overlap, such as the 15-day deadline. However, the actual transfer of a mobile home is a little different from a vehicle title transfer. If an Affidavit of Affixture has been filed on the mobile home, then the home will change ownership whenever a deeded action alters the ownership of the land. (The Affidavit of Affixture adjusts the mobile home’s status from personal property to real property.) If a manufactured home does not have the affidavit, the title must be transferred through the MVD or an authorized third-party provider.
Dealing with Vehicles of Deceased Owners
The paperwork can get a little more complicated when transferring the title of a vehicle owned by a deceased individual. Even if the owner didn’t sign over the vehicle prior to death, the MVD or the authorized provider can transfer the title if all of the following conditions apply:
- The transferee has a legal right to inherit the vehicle by will or intestate succession.
- At least 30 days have passed since the owner’s death.
- The value of the vehicle doesn’t exceed $50,000.
If these conditions aren’t satisfied, the probate court will get involved.
Paperwork can be confusing, but Arizona Motor Vehicle Express makes it easy! Our friendly experts in Tucson can assist you with the transfer of your vehicle title or mobile home title. Give us a call at (520) 219-8852 and enjoy the convenience of our alternative to the DMV!