Title Transfer Indiana

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To officially transfer ownership of a vehicle in Indiana, you’ll need to complete a title transfer. You can do this by going to your local Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) and paying the $15 title fee.
Before you can officially seal the deal on your brand new car—or say goodbye to your old but ever-reliable vehicle—there’s one more step you need to do. You must transfer your car title to transfer ownership of the car. 
Here at Jerry, the car insurance comparison and broker app, we’re all about making things easy and straightforward. Read on for everything you need to know about title transfer in Indiana.

What is a title transfer?

Let’s start with the basics. A car title is what legally declares who owns the vehicle. So when you transfer the title of a car, you’re essentially transferring its ownership
Transferring a title consists of two steps—one for the seller and one for the buyer:
  • The seller must release ownership of the car by signing the title
  • The buyer must take the signed title to the DMV, where the state will issue a new title and registration
The process may vary between states. Some require additional paperwork to complete the title transfer process, such as a bill of sale or transfer of ownership form. You may also need to provide basic vehicle information like the sales price and current odometer reading.
Key Takeaway A title essentially is a piece of paper that legally declares who is the owner of the vehicle.
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Who does the title transfer?

The responsibility for the title transfer depends on whether you’re buying (or selling) a vehicle privately or from a dealership. 
If it’s a private purchase, it’s up to the buyer and seller to complete the title transfer process. When you buy a car from a dealer, they handle all the paperwork and mail the vehicle title from the state DMV.

Reasons for a title transfer

There are various reasons you might need to complete a title transfer for a vehicle. The most common include a change of residency or buying or selling a car
Here are some other reasons for a title change:
  • Donating a vehicle
  • Gifting a vehicle
  • Inheriting a vehicle
  • Paying off a vehicle loan

Car title transfer in Indiana

In Indiana, the vehicle buyer can complete a title transfer online through the BMV’s virtual portal or in person at a local branch. It must be done within 45 days of the change of ownership or you will be subject to late fees.
Here’s what you need to do:
  • Provide proof of payment of the 7% sales tax or remittance—note that new residents of Indiana are not charged sales tax when transferring a vehicle’s certificate from initial state to Indiana
From there, follow the instructions from the BMV Virtual Office. The title transfer fee is $15.
Once you’ve submitted all required documentation, the BMV will process and mail your new title within 21 calendar days. 
Key Takeaway The BMV’s website and branches will walk you through the title transfer process from start to finish—and there’s no lineup!

Registering a car in Indiana

After a title transfer, you’ll need to register the vehicle. Registration is proof that you can legally drive on the streets and is done annually. 
In Indiana, registering your standard vehicle costs $21.35 per year. In addition, you’ll need to pay the following:
Plate FeeVariesThis is based on what type of plate your vehicle has—personalized, distinctive, authentic, or transport driver plates.
Transportation Infrastructure Improvement Fee$15This fee is part of the state’s road funding package, which must be paid every year upon renewal of registration.
Supplemental Hybrid or Electric Vehicle Fee$50-$150Depending on whether you have a hybrid or electric vehicle, you may have to pay an additional fee. Gas cars do not have to pay this fee.
Depending on your municipality, other fees may apply based on county of residence, driving record, and a vehicle excise tax.

Finding insurance for your vehicle

Title transfer or not, before you can get behind the wheel of your new (or new-to-you) vehicle, you’ll need car insurance. 
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A title transfer is more challenging if the vehicle is still financed. You’ll need to call your lender and ask how to sell a car that has a loan and how the transaction should be handled.
The title will have a line that says “seller’s signature.” If two people are on the title, both will need to sign on the same line, and there is a separate line for the buyer’s signature.

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