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Location: Home » DMV Help » Registration & Titling » Title Transfers  » FL-Florida
Page Summary: Title Transfers

Title Transfers in Florida

Vehicle title information is maintained by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Their database cross references vehicle registrations and titles with drivers license records.

A title is the official record of ownership and required for most vehicles. The only exceptions are motorized bikes, mopeds and trailers under 2000 pounds. You should record the change in ownership as soon as possible by getting a new title and registration.


How to Apply for a Title

Go through this checklist before buying the car:

  • Provide proof of ownership (a bill of sale, for instance) 
  • Seller signed title, entered correct mileage (cars older than 10 years are exempt from mileage disclosure) and wrote your name as the buyer and wrote the correct amount as selling price
  • Complete the Title Application Form HSMV 82040
  • They are no unsatisfied liens on the title
  • Provide notarized verification of the vehicle VIN (if it was previously registered in another state) 
  • Pay applicable fees (see below), including sales tax on the vehicle, title fees, and registration
  • If there is a space for notarization on the title (certain states), the sale has to be notarized
  • To get a tag you need to provide proof of Florida insurance which you can get at our agency at the very best price

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Where to Apply for Title & Registration

Tax Collector Offices or License Plate agencies in each of the counties can process your paperwork. 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.

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Title Fees

When registering your vehicle for the first time, or when transferring a certificate of title between owners the following title fees are required:

New Vehicles $31.25
Vehicles previously registered in Florida $29.25 
Vehicles previously registered in another state or country $33.25 

Note: Add an additional $2 to the application fee when recording a lien   

  • Lien Add Only $28.25

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Vehicle Identification Number Verification (VIN)

Florida requires verification of the VIN prior to issuing a title for most vehicles. The VIN is used to ensure it's the same vehicle described in the existing paperwork. This can be performed by any one of the following using form HSMV 82040

  • Law enforcement officer from any state
  • Licensed motor vehicle dealer from Florida or any state
  • A county tax collector employee of Division of Motor Vehicle Compliance Examiner
  • Provost Marshal or commissioned officer in active military service, with a rank of 2nd lieutenant or higher.

You do not need VIN Verification for the following vehicles:

  • 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

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Signatures for Transferring a Title

Only the buyers must be present at the Tax Collectors Office. Before you buy a vehicle, make sure the title has no liens and is properly filled out. If it is a first time transfer into joint ownership and the names are connected by “and” or “or”, all owners must sign the title being transferred and the Application for the Title.

If all owners will not be present at the Tax Collectors Office, remember to bring a copy of their driver’s license to validate their signature. Only the buyer will have to come. 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 handprint their name in the right column, same section. The purchaser should then sign their name in the left column in the Purchaser section and handprint 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.

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Seller Protection

When you sell a car, truck, boat or any other vehicle in Florida, it is important that the title of the vehicle is properly transferred. The buyer of the vehicle is responsible for initiating the transfer of the title but as a seller you need to protect yourself.
If the buyer does not initiate the title transfer you can document the sale with all the pertinent information including the date, price, and, buyer and seller names.

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Notice of Sale

When you sell a vehicle or vessel you need to protect yourself by filing the Notice of Sale Form HSMV 82050. Once you file the Notice of Sale Form to the Tax Collector's office, according to Florida Statute Section 319. 22(2), you will avoid civil liability for the vehicle or vessel. This means if the buyer gets in a car accident you won't be liable.
By filing this form, this allows the Tax Collector office and DMV database to be updated and the title of the vehicle or vessel will be marked sold. The ownership status will not change until the buyer applies for and is issued a Certificate of Title. The Certificate of Title needs to be filled out by the buyer and signed by both the seller and buyer and submitted to a local Tax Collector's office.

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Check out the Vehicle

Before you buy a used car it's always a good idea to check  the vehicle history and see if it was involved in any accidents.

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