How To Transfer a Car Title in Arizona
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If you're engaging in buying and selling cars in Arizona, mastering the car title transfer process is essential, as it's a task you'll encounter frequently.
In Arizona, any time a vehicle changes hands through sale, donation, or gifting, the car title must be transferred to the new owner.
This act serves as legal evidence of the change in ownership.
Arizona law requires that a title transfer application be submitted within 15 days from the transaction date to avoid any penalties.
Fortunately, Arizona has streamlined this process, allowing for title transfers to be completed online, adding convenience to compliance.
Whether you opt for the digital route or prefer in-person transactions at an MVD office or through an authorized third-party provider, understanding the specifics of transferring a car title in Arizona is crucial.
This guide is designed to walk you through each step, ensuring you're well-equipped to handle title transfers efficiently and correctly.
Table of Contents
- What Does Transfer of Title Mean in Arizona?
- Can You Transfer a Title in AZ Online?
- What Is Needed for a Title Transfer in Arizona?
- Do You Need a Notary To Transfer Car Title Arizona?
- How To Transfer Car Title in Arizona Online
- How To Transfer Car Title in Arizona MVD Offices
- Best Car Deals by Category
What Does Transfer of Title Mean in Arizona?
Transfer of title in Arizona is a process that indicates a transfer of ownership from the seller to the buyer. This is applicable whether you bought the car via an auction, private market, or dealership. All parties involved must understand that driving a car in Arizona without a title is illegal.
However, title transfers are not limited to buyers and sellers. Title transfers are also required if a car is donated. This means that car trades and donations do not end with handing over the keys. It is important that all parties involved transfer titles, and this is also applicable if there is a lien holder.
Can You Transfer a Title in AZ Online?
Yes, you can transfer a title online in Arizona (AZ). Arizona integrated the ‘title’ system to offer car users an easier and faster means of transferring their titles.
The electronic title transfer in Arizona gets sellers and buyers on a secured online network, where they can transfer titles without visiting an MVD office.
Parties involved in the title transfer (buyer and seller) must have an eTitle website account and have the eTitle transfer requirements.
However, drivers wishing to transfer a title in AZ online must confirm their eligibility first. You also need to understand that Arizona online title transfer is time-bound, so you must do everything as soon as possible.
The Arizona online title transfer works like a “P2P trade system” where the seller will transfer the title and vehicle within 72 hours while the buyer will complete the title transfer by paying the required fees.
The required fees must be paid immediately, and buyers will incur penalty fees if they fail to pay the title fees within one month. Don’t forget that Arizona online title transfer is limited to passenger vehicles.
What Is Needed for a Title Transfer in Arizona?
Here is a list of documents and forms that are needed for a title transfer in Arizona:
- Signed vehicle title
- Current Arizona registration
- Lien release, if applicable
- Certified power of attorney
- Completed, signed title and registration application
- Personal representative papers, etc.
You must understand that the requirements might increase depending on whether you transfer your car title online or visit an MVD office.
Do You Need a Notary To Transfer Car Title Arizona?
Yes. You need a notary to transfer car titles in Arizona. You’ll need a notary to notarize the signing of documents during the transfer of title, especially if all parties involved decide to visit an MVD office to initiate the transfer.
Notary transfers might not be required if you decide to transfer the titles online. However, you should notarize the processes and signatories involved in your car title transfer. This will sustain authentication and improve verification.
How To Transfer Car Title in Arizona Online
Before we show you how to transfer a car title in Arizona online, you must be familiar with the necessary requirements to aid your process of transferring a car title in Arizona.
Here’s a list of requirements for online title transfer in Arizona:
- Arizona title and registration
- No Liens
- Parties involved (one owner to another owner)
- Current emissions, in the event of emissions, then the vehicle should be sold only to non-emissions areas.
With that off the way, here are easy ways to transfer a car title in Arizona Online:
1. Create an Account
The first step to take to transfer a title online in Arizona is to create an account on AZ MVD Now Website.
You can do this with your email address or your Google account after successfully creating and activating your account. Creating an account on the eTitle transfer website isn’t that hard. You should get it done in a few seconds.
After creating an account on the AZ MVD Now Website, log in and navigate to the “Title” Tab. As the buyer, you should click on “I’m buying a vehicle.” This will enable you to generate an eTitle Buyer Code.
The eTitle Buyer code will initiate the title transfer between the buyer and the seller. However, this will not work until you are done with authentication.
The Arizona government integrated an enhanced authentication that authenticates the personality of the buyer and the seller. At this stage, you must choose mID, Face, or Consumer/Credit Profile-Based Authentication.
For authentication on the AZ MVD Now Website, you will need a smartphone and a laptop with a camera.
Security and ease of use aren’t the same for all authentication options. The mID Authentication is the most secure, Face Authentication is the fastest, and Consumer/Credit Profile-Based Authentication doesn’t require a photo.
3. Generate a Buyer Code
If you’re done with authentication, you should click the “I’m buying a vehicle” option, leading you to the page where you generate a buyer code.
The buyer code is an electronic and computer-generated code that identifies the buyer without disclosing the parties' personal information.
After creating an eTitle transfer buyer code, you must copy and save the code for future transactions because you will need to send the code to the seller to finalize the trade.
As a backup, the code will be sent as a message to your MVD Account, but the code is only valid for 48 hours, so you have to finalize everything within that period.
4. Seller Initiates the Transaction
After creating a buyer code, the buyer’s work is almost done. The seller will need to create an account or log into the MVD Account, scroll to the Title tab, and click on the “I’m selling my vehicle” option.
The seller will also need to go through the authentication process, choosing the best authentication system for them.
5. Seller Initiates Vehicle Title Transfer
After enhanced authentication, the page will direct you to the transfer vehicle title page, where you must select the vehicle to which you are transferring its title.
Not all Arizona vehicles are eligible for an online title transfer, so you should confirm its eligibility. The page will clearly state if your proposed vehicle is eligible; if it is, select the vehicle and click “Transfer Title” on the Action Tab to transfer the title.
The seller will need to input the buyer code as provided by the buyer, input the current odometer reading and affirm that the readings are accurate. Click submit when you are sure of your inputs.
After clicking submit, the buyer will receive a prompt that a title transfer has been initiated and is almost complete. The buyer will need to confirm and accept the title transfers. Buyer will accept the title transfer by clicking “Continue eTitle Transfer” after opening the prompt/message.
As the buyer, you must confirm the vehicle’s details while the seller releases the title by clicking “release ownership and transfer title.” This is the final stage of Arizona eTitle transfer, and the buyer becomes the legitimate owner of the vehicle.
It is important to mention that eTitle transfers keep your titles in a digital form, and you can print them.
If there’s any reason that will warrant you to get a paper title, scenarios like moving out of state, you will need to use the Title Replacement Service option to get a paper title. This comes at an extra cost of $4.
How To Transfer Car Title in Arizona MVD Offices
Online transfer title is not the only way to transfer a car title in Arizona.
Here are easy ways to transfer a car title in Arizona MVD Offices:
1. Visit an MVD Office near you
If you don’t want to do your Arizona title transfers online, you should visit the MVD office website and choose the nearest office. You can customize your search by inputting your postal code and deciding how many miles closer you want the office to be.
Choose an MVD and make an appointment.
2. Application and Registration
Visit the MVD Office and file your application and start the registration process. The registration process will require the seller to provide the vehicle’s license plate number, lien information, if any, address, date of birth, vehicle make, and other essential information about the vehicle and the seller.
This process can require the seller to fill out a sold-out notice and remove their license plate. In Arizona, new buyers are not meant to drive with license plates gotten from the sellers, as the license plates still have their details on them.
3. Title Signatories and Notarization
The seller should proceed with signing the title and notarizing the signatories. This ensures verification and authentication of the signatures involved.
4. Documentation, Paperwork, Fees, and Tax
All documentation must be completed in this phase. The buyer can register the car in their name and pay the necessary fees and taxes, the same as the seller. All forms must be signed and notarized within 15 days from the date of sale.
The fees attached to title transfer in Arizona include the following:
- Title Fee: $4
- Registration Fee: $8
- Air Quality Research Fee: $1.50
- Vehicle License Tax: a percentage of your car’s retail price
The total cost of title transfer in Arizona is $13.50, tax excluded.
The tax is excluded because of how it’s calculated each year. It starts at 60% of the retail price (from the manufacturer) and then is reduced by 16.25% each year the vehicle has been registered in Arizona. Check out this helpful infographic for examples of how Arizona’s vehicle license tax is broken down.
Transferring a car title is a necessary process that you must do if you’re buying or selling a vehicle. All you have to do is to stick to the processes and follow the steps stated in this blog. The online Arizona title transfer offers an easier option, but you must know you won’t get a paper title.