How To Transfer Car Title in Indiana

How to Transfer Car Title in Indiana

Are you the proud owner of a new car or bidding farewell to your trusty old vehicle? Either way, completing a title transfer is a necessary step in the process.

Whether purchasing a new or used car, specific documentation must be handled to ensure a seamless legal transition. And one of the most critical tasks is transferring the car title - but the requirements vary from state to state.

In Indiana, for example, a fresh title certificate is mandatory within 45 days of acquiring a vehicle, whether you bought it from a dealership or a private seller.

But don't worry - I will guide you through the process of transferring a car title in Indiana, no matter your situation.

So, if you're ready to take the next step in your car ownership journey, read on and discover everything you need to know about how to transfer a car title in Indiana!

What Documents Will You Need To Transfer a Car Title in Indiana?

Obtaining specific documentation is vital to perform a vehicle title transfer in Indiana. The following documents must be accessible:

  • The manufacturer's certificate of origin
  • Application for Certificate of Title
  • An odometer disclosure statement or a completed odometer statement on the vehicle title
  • A physical inspection of a vehicle (if necessary)
  • Evidence of address
  • Evidence of social security number or a federal identification number (FIN)
  • Payment of all relevant vehicle title transfer fees and a sales tax fee of 7%.

It's essential to contact the local IN Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) beforehand to ensure the necessary documentation for a specific situation. A bill of sale is often necessary to complete the Indiana vehicle title transfer.

How To Transfer Car Title in Indiana If You're Buying or Selling

In Indiana, the application for a certificate of title must be submitted within 45 days of purchasing or acquiring a vehicle, lest an administrative penalty be charged for the delay.

Suppose you want to procure a vehicle. In that case, you must ensure the seller has completed the seller and purchaser sections of the certificate of title before proceeding to a BMV location to secure a new title.

The seller should remove the license plate during the transaction. The new owner is responsible for obtaining a new certificate of title, registration, and license plate after the purchase.

The Indiana BMV does not require the plates of sold vehicles to be returned, but they may be given to another vehicle owned by the same individual.

How To Transfer Car Title in Indiana If the Owner Is Deceased

The process for transferring a vehicle's title after the registered owner's death is determined by whether the individual holds the title of a sole proprietor or a co-owner.

If the vehicle's title was solely in the deceased's name, you must verify if the estate is being probated.

Probate is a legal procedure that covers the execution of the estate of a deceased person in compliance with their testamentary wishes.

The Probate Court will determine the procedures for managing the individual's property. During probate, the deceased individual's assets will be distributed per their will.

If the automobile is part of a probated estate, specific steps must be followed to transfer the title of the deceased individual's vehicle:

1. Get in Touch With a Probate Court

The validity of a vehicle's title transfer is suspended until the probate is concluded. As the executor of the deceased, you must contact Probate Court or an attorney to acquire supplementary information about the probate process.

Once the probate has been finalized, the heir can take possession of the vehicle. If the executor has been designated as the recipient of the vehicle, they may opt to sell it.

2. Compile the Necessary Documents

To effectuate the transfer of a vehicle's title in Indiana, the following documents are indispensable:

  • A death certificate
  • An odometer reading
  • An order issued by the Probate Court directing the transfer of the vehicle
  • The certificate of title
  • The requisite transfer fee

3. Pay a Visit to the Title Offices in Indiana

Suppose you are the appointed executor of the deceased's estate or the designated recipient of the vehicle.

In that case, you may proceed with the Indiana vehicle title transfer process by visiting the title office and providing the abovementioned documents.

How To Transfer Car Title in Indiana Without Probate

In Illinois, transferring a vehicle title without probate is subject to specific criteria, including a limit on the value of the deceased estate and a waiting period following their passing.

Suppose you are an administrator, spouse, joint owner, or beneficiary. In that case, presenting the death certificate and vehicle title to the title office may only be necessary to initiate the vehicle title transfer process. This process can be completed without legal representation or a court order.

How To Get a Replacement Title in Indiana

A duplicate title is procured in cases where the original title is lost or destroyed. The term "DUPLICATE" is imprinted on the face of the duplicate title.

After a duplicate title is issued, the original title loses its validity. If the original title is found, it should be destroyed to ensure that it is not utilized in transferring or selling the vehicle's ownership.

When obtaining a duplicate title, a valid photo identification that has not yet expired, such as a driver's license, state-issued ID, school, military, bank card, passport, probation card, work ID, or membership card, must be provided.

How To Transfer Car Title in Indiana If the Title Is Out-of-State

Specific requirements must be fulfilled to effectuate a vehicle title transfer when moving to a different state.

Apart from the standard application forms, you might be required to undergo a vehicle identification number (VIN) verification and present evidence of possessing a valid Indiana auto insurance policy.

To complete the transfer of a certificate of title, one must carry out the following procedures:

  • Conduct a vehicle emissions test, if mandatory
  • Visit the local Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) office
  • Fill out the relevant application forms
  • Submit all out-of-state documents, such as the vehicle registration and title
  • Procure evidence of valid Indiana automobile insurance coverage
  • Pay all applicable fees related to the transfer of the vehicle title and associated expenses

It may be possible to apply for a vehicle registration and title transfer simultaneously.

Lien Holders in Indiana

Before selling a vehicle, all lienholders must relinquish their interest. Lien holders are of two types, namely:

I. Financial institution or dealer

II. An individual

How To Release a Lien If the Holder is a Financial Institution or a Dealer

To eliminate the lien on your vehicle's title certificate, the lienholder must authorize the lien release in the appropriate section of the certificate of title or issue a lien release letter.

If the financial institution or dealership is no longer operational, seek a court order from your local court directing the BMV to release the lien.

How To Release a Lien Holder If the Holder Is an Individual

To absolve a lien from a vehicle's title certificate, the lienholder must effectuate the lien release by one of the following means:

  1. Signing off in the appropriate lien release section on the certificate of title
  2. Furnishing the owner of the vehicle with a lien release letter
  3. Providing a general Affidavit – State Form 37964, duly signed by the individual lienholder.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to provide a VIN verification when transferring a car title to Indiana?

Yes, a VIN verification is required for vehicles that were titled in another state or country and are now being titled in Indiana.

Can I apply for a vehicle title and vehicle registration simultaneously in Indiana?

Yes. You can simultaneously apply for a vehicle title and registration in Indiana.

How long does it take to transfer a car title in Indiana?

The transfer of a car title in Indiana can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on various factors, such as the workload of the BMV office.

Can I transfer a car title online in Indiana?

No, car title transfers cannot be completed online in Indiana. They must be completed in person at a BMV office.

Do I need to provide proof of insurance when transferring a car title to Indiana?

You must provide proof of a valid Indiana auto insurance policy when transferring a car title in Indiana.

Can I transfer a car title in Indiana without going to the BMV office?

You can only transfer a car title in Indiana if you visit the BMV office. However, some BMV services, such as scheduling appointments or completing certain forms, may be available online.

Do I need to provide a smog or emissions test when transferring a car title in Indiana?

It depends on the county you live in and the age of the vehicle. In some counties, emissions testing is required for specific vehicles, while in others, it is not.

You can check the Indiana BMV website for a list of counties requiring emissions testing and more information on specific vehicle requirements.