Consumer Title Resource | Since 2009!

How to Transfer a Car Title in Maryland

Transferring a car title is an essential process when buying a used vehicle in Maryland. It establishes legal ownership and enables you to register the vehicle in your name. To make the title transfer process smooth and successful, it’s crucial to understand the required documents and follow the necessary steps. In this blog post, we will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to transfer a car title in Maryland.

Step 1: Gather the Required Documents

Before initiating the title transfer process, make sure you have the following documents ready:

Properly assigned title certificate

If the vehicle’s current title was issued in Maryland, it can be used as proof of ownership. However, if the vehicle is from a state that does not issue a title, you can submit a registration document and a bill of sale instead.

Application for Certificate of Title (VR-005)

Fill out this application form, providing all the necessary information. Ensure you include your proof of liability insurance details, which must comply with Maryland’s minimum requirements.

Bill of Sale (VR-181)

 Prepare a bill of sale that is signed by both the buyer and the seller. If the vehicle is less than 7 years old, and the purchase price is at least $500 below the book value, the bill of sale must be notarized. This requirement applies if the new owner wants the excise tax calculation to be based on the purchase price rather than the book value.

Proof of purchase price

Provide documentation that verifies the purchase price of the vehicle. This can be the bill of sale mentioned above, indicating the actual price paid.

Odometer disclosure statement (if applicable)

If the vehicle has an odometer, complete the Odometer Disclosure Statement (VR-197). This statement records the odometer reading at the time of the transfer.

Lien release form (if applicable)

If there is a lien on the vehicle, obtain a lien release form from the lien holder. This can be a completed and signed Maryland Security Interest Filing or a signed letter from the lien holder specifically stating that the lien has been released.

Step 2: Submitting the Application

Once you have gathered all the required documents, follow these steps to obtain your Maryland car title:

Obtain inspections, if directed

Some vehicles for hire may require inspections, so make sure to comply with any instructions given. However, transfers between spouses, parents, and children generally do not require inspections.

Visit your nearest MVA location

Take all the required documents and visit the nearest Maryland Vehicle Administration (MVA) location. Submit your completed Application for Certificate of Title (VR-005) and pay the applicable fees.

Receive your new title and registration

After submitting your application and paying the fees, the MVA will process your request. Your new title will be mailed to you. If you choose to register the vehicle simultaneously, you will also receive your registration card, expiration stickers, and license plate immediately.

Transferring a car title in Maryland involves gathering the necessary documents and following the outlined steps. By ensuring you have all the required paperwork, including the properly assigned title certificate, completed application, bill of sale, proof of insurance, and any additional documents like the odometer disclosure statement or lien release form, you’ll be well-prepared to transfer the title smoothly. Remember to visit the MVA, submit your application, and pay the fees to finalize the process. Now, you’re on your way to becoming the legal owner of your newly purchased used vehicle in Maryland. 

Expert Automotive Advice At Your Fingertips.

Get expert advice for buying or selling your car with Our team of automotive experts can provide you with tailored advice to navigate the process with confidence. Schedule your consultation today and take the first step towards a stress-free buying or selling experience.×165.pngTalk to an Expert

Have Title Questions? Talk to a Car Title Expert.

Book a consultation with a Car Title Expert from to get personalized guidance on your title recovery journey.

Don’t let uncertainty hold you back. If it’s your car, you deserve a title.

Share this article!

Check Your VIN Instantly:

Powered by