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    What is a Title Transfer?

    A title is proof of legal ownership of a vehicle. When ownership changes, the new owner must transfer the title into his name. In Alaska, a new owner has 30 days from the purchase (or receipt) of the vehicle to transfer the title. Common reasons for title transfers include:

    • Buying a new or used car
    • Paying off an auto loan
    • Transferring a car to a family member
    • Gifting or donating a car
    • Inheriting a car
    • Changing a name on the title

    Selling a Vehicle

    When selling a car, you'll be more successful by deciding on a price that's fair to both parties. Validate your asking price by ordering a vehicle history report (VHR). The buyer will be more likely to accept the price when he sees the past history of maintenance and repairs on the car, because it will help him know what he's getting into. Learn more about these reports in our section on VHRs.

    Once you've found a willing buyer, follow the steps below to transfer the title to the new owner.

    1. Sign and date the title. If the vehicle is less than 10 years old, record the mileage on the title. You cannot sell a vehicle if you don't have a title that is free of liens. If you've lost the title, you’ll need to apply for a duplicate. Learn more in our section on replacing a lost title.
    2. Have the buyer sign and date the title.
    3. Complete and sign the bottom portion of the title, Notice of Vehicle Sale for Transfer, and deliver that portion to the DMV immediately. You may also mail the document to:

      • State of Alaska
      • Division of Motor Vehicles
      • ATTN: MAILOUTS
      • 1300 W Benson Blvd., suite 200
      • Anchorage, AK 99503-3600

      NOTE: Save time and submit a Notice of Sale online.

    4. If you have specialty or personalized license plates, remove them from the car.
    5. Give the signed title to the buyer, who will complete the title transfer and registration at the DMV. The buyer is also responsible for emissions certification (depending on where he lives) and insurance for the vehicle.

    NOTE: Although a Bill of Sale is not required for either party, it's wise to complete one for each of you. This document can help protect you, the seller, if the new owner receives parking tickets, etc.

    Buying a Vehicle

    New Cars

    Title transfers are simple when you buy a new car from a dealer because the dealer typically takes care of the paperwork for you.

    Used Cars

    Buying a used car from someone you don't know can be a tough decision. It's often a big financial commitment as well, so do your research online to learn which auto financing options are right for you. You can also decide on the best car insurance quotes by comparing them online at our Insurance Center.

    Knowing the past maintenance and repair of the vehicle can also help you make a smart deal. When you have your eye on the car of your dreams, order a Vehicle History Report online so you won't have any nasty surprises after sealing the deal.

    Once you're confident you're making the right purchase, you can transfer the title into your name.

    1. Have the owner sign and date the title and record the mileage. He should also complete the Notice of Vehicle Sale for Transfer at the bottom of the title, and detach it.
    2. Sign and date the title.
    3. If the vehicle has specialty or personalized license plates, make sure the owner has removed them.
    4. Take the signed title and a completed Application for Title & Registration (Form 812) to the DMV. Depending on where you live, you’ll also need to have a current emissions certificate before completing the transfer.
    5. Pay a title fee of $15.

    NOTE: If you live in a remote area of Alaska and do not have access to a DMV within 50 miles, you will be permitted to mail your paperwork and fees to the following address:

    • State of Alaska
    • Division of Motor Vehicles
    • ATTN: CORRESPONDENCE
    • 1300 W Benson Blvd., Ste. 200
    • Anchorage, AK 99503-3600

    Expect a two- to four-week wait for processing and mailing.

    Once the sale and title transfer are complete, you can register the vehicle in your name. Get all the necessary details in our section on Car Registration.

    Removing a Lien

    Paying off the loan on your car means that you now own the vehicle free and clear. The lienholder will sign off on the title and send it to you. The transfer is a simple process after that.

    1. Take the following documents to the DMV:

    NOTE: If the title is lost or destroyed, the lienholder can create a lien release document, which must include the date, signature, and title of the lienholder. A “Paid” stamp on a loan document is not sufficient.

    Transferring to Family

    For the purposes of title transfers, Alaska defines “family” as:

    • Spouse
    • Child
    • Parent
    • Grandparent
    • Grandchild
    • Sibling

    When transferring the title to another family member, follow the steps below.

    1. Have the registered owner locate the existing title, enter the mileage, and sign and date the title.
    2. Have the new owner sign and date the title.
    3. The new owner should complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812).
    4. If the vehicle has specialty or personalized license plates, have the registered owner remove them from the car.
    5. The new owner will then take the signed title, application, and title fee of $15 to the DMV.
    6. The registered owner will need to fill out a Notice of Transfer Pending (Form 820) and send the top portion to the DMV.

    Gifting a Vehicle

    If you receive a vehicle as a gift, transfer the title to your name by following the steps below.

    1. Have the registered owner locate the existing title, enter the mileage, and sign and date the title.
    2. Sign and date the title.
    3. Complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812).
    4. If the vehicle has specialty or personalized license plates, have the registered owner remove them from the car.
    5. Take the signed title, application, and title fee of $15 to the DMV.
    6. The registered owner will need to fill out a Notice of Transfer Pending (Form 820) and send the top portion to the Alaska DMV.

    Even when you receive the vehicle as a gift, you'll need to register it in your name. Learn all about the process and requirements in our section on Car Registration.

    Donating a Vehicle

    If you're thinking about donating your car to a charitable organization, you have literally thousands of options. Know what you're doing before you make any commitments. Find out more about the process in our section on donating a car.

    Inheriting a Vehicle

    Dealing with a loved one's estate after his death can be difficult.

    If you are an heir of the deceased person, you can: 1) wait for the completion of the probate process, during which an executor will be responsible for distributing assets, including vehicles; or 2) submit a claim to bypass that process. You must wait 30 days from the date of death, and you can submit the claim only if the entire estate―after expenses and debt satisfaction―is worth no more than $150,000. You must also be the next of kin or legal heir.

    If you go through the probate process to inherit the vehicle, transfer the title into your name as follows.

    1. The executor will sign the title and enter the mileage as the legal representative for the deceased person. He must also give you the original or a certified copy of the will naming you as legal heir.
    2. Sign and date the title.
    3. Complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812).
    4. If the vehicle has specialty or personalized license plates, remove them from the car.
    5. Take the plates, signed title, will, and application to the DMV.
    6. Pay a $15 title fee.

    If you decide to submit a claim and bypass the probate process, transfer the title into your name as follows.

    1. Sign and date the title and enter the mileage as the legal heir for the deceased person. If the title is lost or destroyed, you can complete an Affidavit of Lost, Destroyed or Stolen Title(Form 809).The affidavit must be notarized.
    2. Sign and date the title in the buyer's section.
    3. Complete and sign an Affidavit for an Estate with Assets of $150,000 or Less(Form 827).
    4. Complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812).
    5. If the vehicle has specialty or personalized license plates, remove them from the car.
    6. Take the plates, signed title, affidavit(s), and application to the DMV.
    7. Pay a $15 title fee.

    When you inherit a vehicle, you will be required to carry at least liability insurance for it. Make sure you get the best deal by comparing quotes online at our Insurance Center.

    Making Name Corrections

    Changing a Name

    1. Sign the existing title with your previous name in the seller's section. You don't need to record mileage for this transaction.
    2. Sign the title with your new name in the buyer's section.
    3. Complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812). In the Affidavit section of the application, write “Name change only, due to [reason],” and list the reason for the name change.
    4. Take the signed title and application to the DMV.
    5. Pay a $15 title fee. An additional $15 fee will be added if a lienholder will be added to the new title.

    In addition to changing your name on the title, you'll also need to update your other DMV documents, such as your driver's license and registration. Consider obtaining a copy of your name-change document to make the process simpler. Get more details in our section on changing your name.

    Deleting a Name

    1. If the title says “AND” between the owners' names, everyone listed must sign the title as sellers.
    2. To keep your name on the title, sign and date the document as buyer.
    3. Complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812).
    4. Take the completed application, signed title, and a $15 title fee to your local DMV.

    Adding a Name

    1. Sign and date the title as the seller, and record the mileage.
    2. Both you and the person whose name you're adding must sign the title as buyers.
    3. Complete and sign an Application for Title & Registration(Form 812).
    4. Take the completed application, signed title, and a $15 title fee to your local DMV.

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