How to Replace Lost Vehicle Titles

Car Title Missing?


What do you do if you have a car, but you don’t have a car title for it? What if you need a new title or lost your title? Did you buy an abandoned car or one at auction?

Is This You?

·       You received a bill of sale – but no car title.

·       You received no car title and no bill of sale.

·       You received an improperly assigned/damaged title or similar.

·       You purchased the vehicle at an auction and were never issued the title.

·       Your new car title became a lost title before you transferred it to your name.

If that sounds familiar, there are a few ways you can go forward. Not all of them work for every situation, and I’ll tell you right now, the easiest option by far is having us do all the work for you. Here are the options you have:

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Get a Car Title Through the DMV

We all know about the infamous pit of despair known as the local DMV. What you might not know is that depending on where you live, you could wait an average of 2 hours just to talk to an agent about getting a new title.

I can’t tell you how many time I sat at the DMV on my lunch hour, in a plastic chair next to someone who clearly had the flu, all to have to head back to work before my number was called.

To replace a lost title through the DMV, you’ll have to start by filling out your state’s specific car title forms. That usually means downloading at least two forms, getting at least one of them notarized, and delivering them to your local DMV in person so you can pay the processing fees.

You’ll then wait several weeks while your lost title request is worked into the queue of jobs that are already in progress, unless you live in a state that offers rush processing – if so, you can get it done faster if you pay more.

If all of that doesn’t sound too bad, remember that if you forgot to fill out any part of those forms, or if you made a mistake, you may not get your money back. Also, if the DMV finds anything fishy during their search – a history of jumped titles, previous new title filings, and especially reports of theft – they will halt the process and could even deny you a replacement car title.

So by itself, using the DMV to replace a car title is not an easy nor fun option.

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Get a Bonded Car Title

This method of getting a new title requires visiting your local DMV and getting approved for a Lost Title Bond, then purchasing such a bond from a surety bond provider. This turns the existing car title into a Bonded Title.

A Bonded Title is a new title which has a Bond held against it – and a Bond is a form of “bought and paid for” insurance protecting the DMV and any former owners of the car title against wrongdoing. You’ll be able to obtain a clear title within 3 to 5 years, providing none of the previous owners contest the bond.

Not all states allow bonds against a lost title, and those that do won’t approve them in all situations. Again, the DMV is a business like any other – if they can find a reason to save time, money, and hassle, they’ll do it.

Sounds complicated? It is.

But there’s a more difficult path you could take.

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Track Down the Last Legal Owner of the Lost Title

If the person who sold you the car didn’t have a title but the person before them did, try looking around the vehicle for any signs of the last owner whose name would appear on the car title. Business cards, receipts, fuel ledgers, and even personal items might be clues to the identity of the previous owner.

If you find the person, you could ask them how to get a new title for the car or ask them to sign the existing car title over to you.

If this sounds crazy, it’s because it is. Knocking on a stranger’s door can be dangerous. It could also result in legal action by the last legal owner of the lost title.

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I once tracked down the last owner of a unique project car I bought. I found a receipt in the car, called every shop in the US that had that name, found the right one and where it was, asked who the car’s last owner was, found the guy on Facebook, messaged him, convinced him I wasn’t a weirdo… and it all went well from there.

It took 2 months and a whole lot of luck, and it only worked because my car was extremely unique.

I did use this approach to try and replace a motorcycle title once – I bought a motorcycle with no title, and because of its unique paint and modifications I was able to track down a previous owner. I plugged his address into my GPS and drove off, straight into the worst neighborhood in the city. When I arrived at the house there were parts strewn all over the yard, shoddily customized cars and bikes everywhere, and people sitting outside on the front porch who could tell I was either lost or up to no good.

I never got out of the car.

So, tracking down the previous owner is usually not the best option.

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Get a New Clean and Clear Title with Title Gods

I promise I’m not just saying this because I have to. The fact is, trying to replace a lost title yourself is costly and time-consuming endeavor. Plus, we all make mistakes – and when it comes to filing DMV paperwork, mistakes cost money. There’s really no sense in going through all that when there’s a company that will do the work for you.

Some New Title Replacement companies are here today and gone tomorrow. Not Title Gods.

The professionals at Title Gods will send you the right papers the first time, and they have a pipeline straight to the fastest and smoothest DMVs in the country, so you’ll have your new title in no time.

Their price is no problem when you consider all that time you’ll spend sitting at the DMV, when you could be earning money or having fun instead.

Stick to what you do best and let Title Gods do the same – getting your car title replaced without all the headaches.

Contact Title Gods any day of the week for a no-obligation quote.

If you’re wondering how our title recovery service works, just checkout our article HERE explaining how simple it is for Title Gods to recover the title to your vehicle.