A Massachusetts vehicle title transfer is a process that must be completed every time the vehicle changes ownership. A title is a document which is used to claim ownership over a vehicle, and is only issued to the first person who buys the car. A new title is not issued if the car changes ownership, which is why the title transfer is an extremely important step to claiming your rights over the vehicle.
The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles is responsible for handling all Massachusetts vehicle title transfer applications, and the following instances require this process to be completed:
- If the vehicle is gifted to an individual
- If the vehicle is donated to a charity
- If you sell your car, or buy a car from another owner
- If you inherit a vehicle
If you have simply bought the vehicle, the seller is required to use the back of the title to put down the odometer reading, the date of sale, print their name clearly and sign underneath. The purchase price must also be listed, and if space is not available you will have to generate a bill of sales. The seller can claim sales tax in the purchase price and deposit the amount with the RMV, or the buyer can do so himself. The information on the title will prove that the transaction is being made willingly. Though the process is of a Massachusetts vehicle title transfer, you will have to submit a completed application for a new title in order for the RMV to update its records with your information.
If you are gifting or donating the vehicle, then the title transfer process is different. Since there is no money involved in the transaction, there is no sales tax. Your title transfer application will take this into account by asking you to fill out a specific form called the MVU-24 or MVU-26, depending on whether the party being transferred to is non-family or family respectively.
Once the title transfer process is complete, you can drive your vehicle freely as its true owner. The process normally takes 2 to three weeks to complete.