• Find DMV Offices
  • Find Service Providers
  • U.S. Passports

California Title Transfer

Home 9 US State 9 California DMV Services 9 California Title Transfer

The Complete Guide to Transferring a Vehicle Title in California

If you’re buying or selling a vehicle in the state of California, it’s important to understand the process of transferring a vehicle title. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the steps involved in transferring a vehicle title in California, including the required forms, costs, processing locations, and answers to the top 5 common questions about title transfers.

California DMV Services Online

Top 5 Common Questions about Title Transfers in California

Q1. Can I transfer a vehicle title without a bill of sale?
While a bill of sale is not required in California, it is recommended as proof of the transaction and to protect the buyer and seller’s interests.

Q2. Do I need insurance before transferring the title?
Yes, you must have valid insurance coverage in California before transferring the title. Ensure you have an insurance policy on the vehicle and provide proof of insurance during the title transfer process.

Q3. Can I transfer a title if I’m giving the vehicle as a gift?
Yes, you can transfer a title if you’re giving the vehicle as a gift. The process is similar, but you will need to mark the appropriate box on the REG 227 form and provide a statement of gift.

Q4. What if there is a lien on the vehicle?
If there is an outstanding lien on the vehicle, you must contact the lienholder to arrange for the lien to be satisfied or transferred. The lienholder will provide the necessary documents for the title transfer.

Q5. How long does the title transfer process take?
The title transfer process in California can take up to 30 days. However, it may vary depending on various factors such as DMV processing times and any additional documentation required.

We hope this comprehensive guide provides you with the necessary information to transfer a vehicle title in California successfully. Follow all the required steps, gather accurate documentation, and comply with the applicable fees and regulations. For more detailed information, visit the official California DMV website. Safe travels!
Last Verified:
Aug 21, 2023