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Transfer of dual-owner car title after one of them dies?


Fred_C_Dobbs's Avatar
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02-12-17, 10:07 AM   #1 (permalink)  
Transfer of dual-owner car title after one of them dies?

My mother is selling her car today. The title lists her and my father as the owners but my father is dead. Is this likely to be a sticking point for the County Clerk? Should she offer the buyer some sort of affidavit stating that she is sole owner because the other listed owner is dead?

EDIT:
My state's DMV website offers an "affidavit for general information," which seems ready-made for this purpose but it has a block at the bottom for notarization. And we're not likely to find a notary open for business on a Sunday afternoon. Should I maybe have her fill out the form and not worry about the notary?


Last edited by Fred_C_Dobbs; 02-12-17 at 10:17 AM. Reason: More facts just come to light
 
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02-12-17, 11:22 AM   #2 (permalink)  
Does the title state husband and wife or husband or wife?

A lot depends on the local dmv - how picky they are. When we sold my wife's mobile home that her and her deceased husband bought all they wanted her to do was sign his name ..... but they are kind of lax around here.


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02-12-17, 11:29 AM   #3 (permalink)  
It reads 'him AND her.' I think I'm going to use the affidavit they provided without notarization and hope for the best.

 
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02-12-17, 12:12 PM   #4 (permalink)  
I'm sure this doesn't apply, because I'm going to assume that your Parents were married, and that your Mother was probably the sole Heir to your Father's Estate . . . . including the Car.

But if they were separate and single Owners, you would be in a pickle waiting for his Estate to be probated by the Courts, and possibly having a percentage of the Car awarded to another Heir; complicating any Transfer.

 
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02-12-17, 06:57 PM   #5 (permalink)  
During the test-drive I mentioned to the prospective buyer that the car also was titled in my father's name, and that I had prepared the (un-notarized) affidavit I mentioned. She was satisfied enough with that explanation that she left a deposit on the car. I also mentioned that I would make it right to her if DMV gave her any heartburn over it.

Thanks all for your help!

 
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02-12-17, 10:43 PM   #6 (permalink)  
When my dad passed away I sold his car and just signed the title. DMV has nothing to compare signatures to and physical possession of the title is all they really want, and taxes.

 
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07-26-17, 01:35 PM   #7 (permalink)  
I know this is an old, dead thread, but I have something to add that might be significant to someone else on down the line. The buyer of the car texted me that the DMV would not issue a new title without a copy of my father's death certificate. Fortunately, I was able to get one on very short notice from the funeral home.

The bizarre thing is that I only scanned it and sent a copy by email. And digital documents are ridiculously easy to forge. And who doesn't have a printer with a scanner any more? So the policy makes a lot of trouble for law-abiding types but comes nowhere near preventing the non-law-abiding types using fake documents.

 
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