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What do you do when your car title is signed in the wrong spot? It’s a common scenario: You bought a car from a private seller and now you’re in the process of transferring its title and registration over to you. But when you take a closer look at the signed title, you realize something is not right. The seller of your vehicle accidentally signed it in the wrong spot. Now what?
The certificate of title (also known as the “pink slip”) is a legal document that indicates the vehicle’s owner. If your car title is signed in the wrong spot, the DMV will consider it to be invalid. It is important to have a title that is free of errors; otherwise, this can cause major problems for you when attempting to sell or register your vehicle. If you purchased a vehicle and realize the seller signed the prior title in the wrong spot, there are two possible ways to fix this:
Do not try to correct the mistake yourself. It’s best to take the title as it is back to the DMV and see if they will accept it. Depending on the reason why your signature is in the wrong spot, they may still accept it and process your title transfer. If you have made other corrections to the title, such as crossing out incorrect information or adding notes to indicate that information was missing when you received it, your title may be rejected even if everything else is filled out correctly.
Try contacting the seller to get you a duplicate title. This is the easiest way to go about it. The seller will have more success in getting a duplicate title since they’re still listed as the owner of the car and they have all of their identification readily available. If you’re having problems getting the seller to help you, try completing the paperwork for them so all they have to do is sign the duplicate title application. Remember, only the seller can apply for a duplicate title since the prior title has not yet been transferred to your name.
Make sure you check your car title for errors before signing it. It’s incredibly easy to make mistakes at this step in the car title transfer process, so don’t make the same mistake that countless other drivers have made before you. Once you sign on the wrong line and have a hassle on your hands to deal with, it can be difficult to ever make things right again. Remember, if you wait too long to fix your car title error, you could end up having problems later on down the road.
Don’t let uncertainty hold you back. If it’s your car, you deserve a title.
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