Getting a Hassle Free Title Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a title?
A certificate of title is the proof of ownership to a motor vehicle in the state of Florida. Most vehicles are required to be titled. The exceptions are mopeds, motorized bicycles, and trailers weighing less than 2,000 pounds.
- When must I apply for title?
When you purchase a new motor vehicle, bring a motor vehicle into the state, or at any time the ownership of the motor vehicle changes, you must apply for a registration and title in your name.
- What must I have and do to apply for registration and title?
You must have proof of ownership and proof of required insurance coverage written or countersigned by a Florida agent. Then you must purchase or transfer your license plate. Be sure to record a lien if the vehicle is financed. Complete and sign the appropriate title application form. Pay sales tax, title fees, and registrations.
- Where can I apply for Registration and Title?
Application for registration and title to a motor vehicle can be made at any of the tax collector or license plate agencies located in each of the counties throughout Florida.
- What are the basic title fees?
- New Vehicles $77.25
- Vehicles previously registered in Florida $75.25
- Vehicles previously registered in another state or country $85.25
Note: Add an additional $2 to the application fee when recording a lien.
- Lien add only $74.25
Title not required on trailers through 1999 pounds, mopeds, or motorized bicycles.
Expedited service is available in some tax collector offices. Contact your local county tax collector’s office to see if they currently offer this service. For counties offering the expedited service, a fee of $10 (for the service) will be required in addition to the standard title fees.
The application for title, along with all required documents and fees, must be submitted or mailed to the applicable county tax collector’s office for processing. A certificate of title will be issued within five working days after receipt of the documentation and fees.
All taxes and fees are subject to statutory change.
- Do I have proper proof of insurance?
Proof of personal injury protection and property damage liability insurance may be shown by the original or a photocopy of one of the following:
- Florida automobile insurance identification card
- Florida insurance policy
- certificate of insurance
- an original affidavit signed by the insured, giving the name of the insurance company, policy number, type of insurance coverage, and the description of the vehicle.
- What should I know about VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) Verification?
When applying for a title on a motor vehicle previously registered or titled in another state, the VIN on the actual motor vehicle must be checked to ensure that the vehicle is the same as the one described on the proof of ownership.
The VIN must be physically inspected by one of the following:
- A law enforcement officer from any state.
- A licensed Florida or out of state motor vehicle dealer.
- A county tax collector employee or Division of Motor Vehicle Compliance Examiner.
- Provost Marshal or commissioned officer in active military service, with a rank of 2nd lieutenant or higher.
- Are there VIN Verification Exemptions?
Vehicles exempt from VIN verification are:
- new vehicles (regardless whether purchased in Florida or out of state) licensed in this state
- mobile homes
- trailers or semi-trailers with a net weight of less than 2,000 pounds
- travel trailers
- camp trailers
- truck campers
- fifth wheel recreation trailers
- What documentation is required to apply for a duplicate certificate of title when the original has been lost or destroyed?
- Form HSMV 82101, Application for Duplicate or Lost in Transit/Reassignment for a Motor Vehicle, Mobile Home or Vessel Title Certificate, accurately completed by the applicant.
- Proof of Identity. (copy of Drivers License, Identification Card, etc.)
- Lien satisfaction, if applicable.
- Motor Vehicle title fees vary, as follows:
- If title remains electronic = $75.25
- To print and mail a paper title = $77.75
- To print and mail a fast title = $85.25
- Vessel title fees ($6)
($5 additional for Fast Title Service)
- If the mailing address differs from the address on the department’s record for an individual owner or lienholder, see Form HSMV 82101 page 2, Address Change Directions for the required documentation.
- Where is the application to be mailed?
An application must be submitted to your local tax collector’s office for processing.
- What if the original title is located after the duplicate has been issued?
It should be forwarded to the department for cancellation, as the duplicate title voids the original.
- What is required when an out-of-state dealer applies for a duplicate title for a Florida resident using the dealer's address?
The dealer must provide a copy of his/her license from the state where they are registered.
- Where should I record my odometer reading disclosure?
The actual miles or kilometers as shown on the odometer of the motor vehicle must be disclosed on Florida title transfer.
- Can a vehicle be titled in the name of a minor?
- How do I correctly sign my title over to someone else?
On the title, the seller should fill in the name and address of the purchaser, the odometer information, selling price, and the date sold in the “Transfer of Title by Seller” section. They must then sign their name in the left column in the Seller section and hand print their name in the right column, same section. The purchaser should then sign their name in the left column in the Purchaser section and hand print their name in the right column, same section. If there is a co-purchaser, they should follow the same instructions in the Co-Purchaser section.
- Is it legal to give a car as a gift to a family member, or do I have to put a dollar figure on it (for example $1)?
It is legal to give a car to a family member or anyone else, however, a bill of sale or an affidavit should be completed by both parties to verify this information for the Department of Revenue.
- If the vehicle is purchased by joint ownership, why do both parties have to be present? Can I sign for my spouse?
When a first-time transfer into joint ownership is applied for, whether joint ownership is connected by “and” or “or”, all signatures are required on the application for Florida title, per section 319.22, Florida Statutes (See DMV Procedure TL-01).
- How do I obtain a new motor vehicle title if my deceased spouse is listed on the title?
As of July 1, 2017, a surviving spouse may choose to receive a free title replacement removing the name of the deceased. To obtain a replacement title, complete form HSMV 82152 and submit to a motor vehicle service center along with a certified copy of the death certificate and proof of identity (driver license/ID card/valid passport). A marriage certificate will also be required unless the name of the surviving spouse is shown on the death certificate. There is an expedited title fee of $10 to receive the title the same day.
Please note: Replacement title fees are exempt; however, registration fees resulting from the title change will apply.
- Why is sales tax collected if vehicle has been owned less than six months on an out-of-state title?
This question should be answered by the Department of Revenue. However, when sales tax is collected in Florida for a vehicle owned less than six months on an out-of-state title, the money is actually collected as use tax instead of sales tax.
- How do I find out who owned my car in the past?
To determine who the current or previous owner of a vehicle/vessel is, please do the following (please note this information is not available via telephone inquiry):
- Download Form HSMV 90510 – Driver License, Motor Vehicle/Vessel Records Request
- Complete the form. Specify which of the three formats you desire (i.e. by current registration, by vehicle identification number and/or vehicle owner name).
- Enclose form with fee payable to Division of Motorist Services; Please allow 2 weeks for processing your request.
$ .50 Computer Print-Out of Current Vehicle Record$ .50 Per Vehicle Record by Name Search $1.00 Per Page $3.00 Certified Records (In addition to Regular Fees) $3.00 Previous Registration Record/New Wheels on the Road Fee (Estimated Cost) $15.00 Complete Microfilm Title History (Estimated Cost) Note: We will notify you if additional monies are due.
Bureau of Records
2900 Apalachee Parkway
Neil Kirkman Building, Mail Stop 91
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0620
For more information, please call (850)617-2000.
Personal information in motor vehicle records which have been made confidential may only be released to applicants that meet one of the 14 exemptions noted on the back of the Driver License, Motor Vehicle/Vessel Records Request form due to the Driver Privacy Protection Act.