In order to properly complete a Maryland title upon sale, follow this step-by-step guide:
Seller / Registered Owner Title Transfer Instructions
- If there is a lien indicated on the front of the title and it is paid off, you should have a “Notice of Security Interest Filing” from the lienholder. If not, you will have to obtain a signed letter from the lienholder specifically identifying the vehicle and stating that the lien has been released. If not paid off, you cannot sell the vehicle.
- On the back of the title you will fill in the “Assignment of Ownership” area.
- Fill in the buyer name and address on the lines provided.
- Next, fill in the odometer reading in the space provided. Enter your mileage EXACTLY AS IT APPEARS ON YOUR ODOMETER. DO NOT INCLUDE “TENTHS”. If the odometer does not reflect the actual miles on the car, check the item that says “The odometer reading not the actual mileage. WARNING: ODOMETER DISCREPANCY”.
- Enter SELLING PRICE and DATE OF SALE.
- The seller(s) signs on the indicated line, and prints name on the line provided beneath (A second set of lines is provided for more than one seller) MAKE SURE TO PRINT YOUR NAME (OR NAMES) EXACTLY as appears on the front of the title below “NAME(S) AND ADDRESS OF REGISTERED OWNER(S)”. (DON’T USE SHORT NAMES OR NICKNAMES!). Where there are TWO registered owners listed on the title, you must check to see if there is an“OR” or nothing listed between the registered owners’ names. If there is an “OR”, EITHER registered owner can sign and print their name using the instructions above. Otherwise, the signatures and printed names of BOTH registered owners are required.
- The buyer(s) signs and prints on the next set of lines. Do not release the title without buyer’s signature.
- Make a Bill of Sale. Form is at http://www.mva.maryland.gov/_resources/docs/VR-181.pdf. It must be notarized if the vehicle is less than 7 years old, or if the price is $500 below book value, or if the buyer wants it for excise tax purposes. Keep a copy for your records.
- Give the title, Bill of Sale, and lien release if applicable to the buyer.
- Keep your license plates so you can transfer them to a new vehicle. Otherwise, you must return them to The MVA.
- Locations of Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) offices can be found at http://www.mva.maryland.gov/locations/
- Maryland has published a Buyer/Seller guide for individual transactions at http://www.mva.maryland.gov/_resources/docs/VR-315.pdf
Be Accurate When Filling Out the Certificate of Title in Maryland
- Do not erase anything or use “white-out”
- Do not cross out or scratch anything out
- Write neatly with good handwriting
- Only use BLACK or BLUE ink
- Use actual names…no nicknames!
- Don’t Make Mistakes!
- Any errors can void the document!
Where the Seller Signs the Maryland Title
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