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  • Title Transfers in Colorado

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    What is a Title Transfer?

    Your title is your proof of vehicle ownership. It remains with you until you decide to sell, donate or give the vehicle to another owner. The transfer must take place at your county title and registration office.

    Typical reasons for title transfers include:

    • Selling or buying a vehicle
    • Paying off a loan
    • Transferring to family
    • Gifting or donating a vehicle
    • Inheriting a vehicle
    • Making name corrections

    Selling a Vehicle

    Before submitting a car sale ad, take the time to order a vehicle history report. It provides verifiable proof to any questions potential buyers may ask, and helps establish a selling price based on fair market value. Visit our Vehicle History Report page for the full details.

    To transfer the title, you may need to:

    1. Locate your Colorado Certificate of Title and enter the mileage in the designated area, if necessary.
    2. Add the name and address of the buyer on the title.
    3. Hand over a current Emissions Inspection Certificate if the buyer lives in an emissions area. For more info on the emissions areas in Colorado, visit our section titled Smog & Emission Checks.
    4. Sign and date a Bill of Sale, including your name, the buyer's name, the purchase price, the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the year and make of the vehicle.
    5. Remove the license plates.
    6. Hand over the above paperwork to the buyer. He or she will then pay the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) a visit to transfer ownership.

    Buying a Vehicle

    New Cars

    The dealer usually handles all title transfers.

    Used Cars

    Before signing any documents, protect yourself by learning as much as you can about your selection by ordering a Vehicle History Report online.

    Once you're ready to buy, you may need to:

    1. Have the seller date and sign the title over to you. Confirm that the proper mileage was entered in the designated area.
    2. Have the seller hand you the current emissions inspection certificate, if applicable.
    3. Have the seller hand you a signed and dated Bill of Sale, including your name, the purchase price, the VIN, and the year and make of the vehicle.
    4. Go to your DMV with these documents, proper identification and proof of insurance. Be prepared to pay fees, which vary by county and vehicle.

    Transferring the title will also update the name on the registration.

    NOTE: A VIN inspection is required if the vehicle is titled in another state.

    Removing a Lien

    After paying off your car loan, you'll need the lienholder removed from the title. Generally, the lienholder, without prompt from you, will sign-off on the title and mail it to you. To complete the transfer, you may need to visit your county DMV location.

    Transferring to Family

    To transfer a vehicle as a gift/transfer to family, you may need to:

    1. Have the giver date and sign the title over to you.
    2. Have the giver hand you the current emissions inspection certificate, if applicable.
    3. If the vehicle is being handed over for free, the giver must write "GIFT as the purchase price on the title/provide a letter of gift. Otherwise, he or she must hand you a signed and dated Bill of Sale, including your name, the purchase price, the VIN, the year and make of the vehicle,
    4. Go to your county DMV office with these documents, proper identification and proof of insurance. Be prepared to pay all applicable fees.

    Donating a Vehicle

    Options abound when it comes to donating your vehicle. Go to our Car Donation page for the full scoop.

    Making Name Corrections

    Changing a Name

    To change a name on a title, you may need to:

    1. Sign-off on the title as the seller with your old name, and sign-on as the buyer with your new name.
    2. Complete a Duplicate Title Request and Receipt (Form DR 2539A).
    3. Depending on your situation, have a divorce decree, marriage certificate or court order.
    4. Have proper identification.
    5. Bring all of the documents to your county DMV office and pay a $8.20 fee.

    If you lack the proper documents to support your name change claim (birth certificate, marriage certificate, court decree), you can get around this problem by ordering one of those vital records. You can find more definitive information at our Changing Your Name page.

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