Get a title with a Vermont Registration

Published - Apr 29, 2014
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Author -
Comments - 79

How do you turn this…

…into this…

…then into this…

…and get one of these…

…then go rip around worry free.

Overview

If you purchase a vehicle that does not have a title, it can be a little tricky to get one. Fortunately, there is a legal loop-hole to eventually obtain one:

  • Vermont will issue you a registration and license plate regardless of if you live in VT or bought the vehicle in VT. So, this is sufficient to drive around legally in any state.
  • Once you have the VT registration, you can then transfer it into your state at an “auto tags” business, and apply for a title / registration in your state.
  • The reason this works is because VT only titles vehicles 15 years and newer. So, for an old motorcycle or old car, there would be no VT title at all… so your state will recognize this, and will issue you a new title for your state. It’s a big loop hole, but it works.
  • I’ve heard some states (such as NJ) can be a little finicky about transferring VT registrations into their state and applying for a title… but Pennsylvania obviously doesn’t care.

Steps to follow

  1. When you buy your vehicle, make sure you get a bill of sale with the seller, and have it notarized. Here is an example bill-of-sale you can fill out and use. If the actual seller is weird and won’t fill it out with you, or go to the notary… just fill out the bill of sale as if a friend sold it to you, and go to the notary with a friend. A notary surely doesn’t care or know who the real seller is… or when you bought the vehicle.
  2. After you have the bill of sale squared away, download and print out the Vermont Registration form and fill it out. FYI – Bikes over 300cc need the VIN certified by a cop, dmv, or auto inspection station to prove your vin matches up. Explanation is on page 2 of the VT registration paperwork. Section 7.
  3. On the VT reg form… the fee for a motorcycle is $44. Plus tax. To calculate tax on the price of the vehicle, it’s 6% of your purchase price, or 6% of NADA “good” value. Whichever is higher. Let’s assume NADA value is higher than what you actually paid. So, if NADA “good” value is $800. You pay VT 6% sales tax based on that. $800 x .06 = $48. So total fee you pay VT would be $44 + $48 = $92 total. So, write VT a personal check for $92. Make check payable to “Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles”.
  4. Ok. So, now you have the bill-of-sale and VT-registration forms both squared away. I like to print out a screenshot of the NADA good value. Also print out a photo of the motorcycle.
  5. In an envelope, mail Vermont the: bill-of-sale / VT reg / personal check / pic of NADA value / pic of bike. Address to mail stuff to is: VT DMV 120 State St. Montpelier, VT 05602.
  6. At this point – Make sure you get the bike insured.
  7. Drink a beer. In about 10-20 business days, you’ll receive a Vermont license plate and temporary registration. Be pumped, you can ride the bike legally now! In about 10 more business days you’ll receive the actual VT registration paper. This can be renewed once a year if you want. But it makes sense to transfer it into your state.
  8. Wait about a month, and then go to your local “auto tags” business (I’m in PA. Your state may call this something different or you need to go to a DMV?) The rest of the steps will assume you’re in PA.
  9. When you get to the auto tags place, tell them you want to “transfer a VT registration into PA, and apply for a PA title and registration”. They’ll say “sounds good. Can we see your PA license, auto insurance, VT registration and title”. You will reply with; “VT only titles vehicles 15 years and newer, so there is no VT title. Look it up.” They’ll say; “oh. okay”.
  10. The auto tags place will fill out the PA registration papers for you… applying for a new PA registration and title. They’ll give you a plate and temporary registration right there on the spot. Sweet.
  11. In about 5 weeks you’ll get your real PA registration, and then in another 8 weeks you’ll get your real PA title! Obviously put this somewhere safe.
  12. That’s all there is to it. Drink a beer. You just beat the system using a legal loophole.

We hope this helps you get your motorcycle back on the road. If you can help us out we would appreciate it!





79 Responses to “Get a title with a Vermont Registration”

  1. Adam says:

    Thats a trade secret!… but not really. Vermont doesn’t give a fuck, they just want to get paid so it works out.

  2. Ben says:

    Awesome. Thanks for posting this, Ed!

  3. Carson says:

    We do a very similar process her in NC. We buy up tons of old bikes and cars with no titles and go through a process involving getting and indemnity bond for the bike based on the NC DOT tax value of the bike.

    The inspection you speak of is probably the same inspection we have to get here. A state trooper takes a bunch of pictures of the vehicle and the VIN plate and runs it through their database to make sure the vehicle has never been reported stolen, damaged, flooded, salvaged, etc. If everything comes back clean you can walk right into the registration office and come out with a plate and a title in the mail to you.

    Pretty cool, now you can get all the deals.

  4. Dan says:

    Man this is great info, I’ve heard about this before but I didn’t know the details. Thanks for posting!

  5. Dan L says:

    Over 300cc requires a visual verification of the VIN by a ‘motor vehicle official’ with a letter verifying the inspector on official letter head. Basically take it to any inspection station and give them a few bucks to knock out letter with their inspection license number and the VIN on it. The bike doesn’t have to pass state inspection or anything like that, I threw the DT360 frame in the truck and just drove it over.

    The system works.

  6. Dan L says:

    Also, the new exhaust looks sick

  7. Gan says:

    Is the notarization absolutely necessary? I hate to question the explicitly stated directions, but this would potentially keep me from getting a plate.

    also, on the VT registration form what is the body type for motorcycles? is it MC or 2W?

  8. Gan says:

    I got the registration form figured out. And I just got my plate in the mail! I followed your directions and did wind up getting the bill of sale notarized.

    notes:
    -Vermont may just be my new favorite state
    -I wrote MC for body type.
    – it took 10 days from when I mailed in the forms to me getting the plate (mighty fast)

    Question:
    whats the deal with the physical Vermont registration? they just sent me a copy of the registration application I sent them, along with the plate.

  9. Katie says:

    Okay. So this sounds really great but how do you go about getting the title?

  10. Ed says:

    @katie
    Once you get the VT registration in the mail, take it to an auto tags business. Tell them you want to transfer it into PA and apply for a new PA title. Got it?

    VT doesn’t do titles on anything 15yrs and older. PA recognizes this and will issue a new PA title for the vehicle.

  11. Adam says:

    HI Ed, Similar Story, just bought an 1975 Kawasaki G5 100 Enduro, with Bill of Sale only, No PA Title. I am filling out the VT reg. form now. Just a couple questions:

    1) It asks for Vermont License # ? Do you just leave this blank?
    2) How do you figure out the total amount of money to send?
    3) NADA, just print out a “Good” description of motorcycle?

    Thanks in advance for the help, I just want to get this correct

  12. Ed says:

    @adam
    1) put in your PA license number. Say it’s PA. That’s what I’ve done it works
    2) if nada good value is 800. Multiple that by 6% = $48. The vt reg fee is $44 for a motorcycle. 48+44=92. That’s what you send them a check for. 92.
    3) yes, print out the nada value for your bike. Highlight the good value. Send that in with the rest of the paperwork.

  13. Kerry says:

    I am presently using this process to obtain a Pa title for a 40 year old car. Ive gone thru the Vermont end of things and I got the plate and registration. The only issue that I had is they returned my paperwork initially and charged me more for Vermont taxes, basing the value of the car on the NADA low retail value price. I indicated the actual purchase price on the Form 119 and they will use the purchase price or the NADA guide, whichever is the highest. Its a great money maker for Vermont but Im still glad I was able to go this route.
    For anyone using this system, I did check and the bill of sale that you have to send in with Form 119 can be copy and it does not have to be notarized. I also checked and on Form 119 where it asks for your Vt License#, you can just leave that area blank, or write in N/A. I know some have used their out of state lic# and that also seems to work.
    I didnt even wait any time at all…I immediately submitted the paperwork to PennDOT for a Pa title and registration. Im still waiting but its been only a week. I’ll give an update when I know more or have the Pa title in hand.

  14. Kerry says:

    By the way, did any of you Pa guys apply for your Pa title immediately like I did?

  15. ed says:

    @Kerry
    I did not apply for the PA title immediately.
    I think I did it after a month.

  16. Kerry says:

    Thanks Ed. Maybe I should of waited a little while. No need to throw up any red flags

  17. Kerry says:

    Got my title and plate today from PennDOT. This system works. Thanks for posting and letting others know.

  18. John says:

    I live in NM and have a 2008 CRF230F titled in my name.

    Unfortunately starting in 2008 these titles are marked “OFF HIGHWAY” and I have been told that I cannot get plates even if I add the required on-highway equipment.

    So I actually have a title. Would it still be possible to get a VT plate? Thank you.

  19. Ed says:

    @john
    VT seriously does not give a fuck. If you send in for a VT reg I just about guarantee you’ll get one no prob. Then you will be able to ride your bike around legally in any state. *Unless your state declares a VT registration not allowed?

  20. Kerry says:

    You can more than likely get a Vermont plate but not sure thats going to help you in the long run. You could still get stopped for riding a MC that does not meet NM requirements for not being considered street legal. Also some states require persons who have permanent addresses in that state to have so many days to re-title and register their vehicle in the state which they reside. Remember your NM address will be on the Vermont registration card that comes with the plate so if you get stopped the police they can see that you reside in NM. You might want to do some checking before spending the money.

  21. ed says:

    @Kerry and John
    Good point Kerry.

    John – I guess you’ll have to try the VT reg and let us know what happens. Regarding your state, it seems like a “grey-area”? For the $100 that it will cost you to do the VT reg. It seems totally worth it in my opinion. Shit, if I were you, I’d def do it. And then if I ever get pulled over by a cop, just play dumb and say you lived in VT at one point.

  22. Kerry says:

    I agree Ed that its probably worth the risk. Atleast John will be able to ride his bike and have it registered. I also agree its in the “grey area”, but more than likely worth trying. The way it is now he cant ride at all on the streets. Remember if you get stopped they (NM police) also might want to see an insurance card so thats something you also might want to check into.

  23. Kerry says:

    I was so happy the other day when I opened up that PA title I felt like running out and buying a picture frame for it. I had so many friends who told me getting a title for my 40 year old car was useless. I think I will stick it in each and everyones face when I see them again. I really appreciate you posting this info Ed and bringing it to my attention. I was getting ready to hire a title recovery agency and pay them $735 to do the same thing.

  24. ed says:

    @Kerry
    F yea!
    Awesome.

  25. John says:

    Talked to VT DMV today. It turns out they will not issue a title for a bike less than 300 cc’s.

    So I can get a plate but not a “cleansed” VT title. In fact, I will still have a blocked NM title on file. So when I take my VT registration in to get a NM title, registration, and plate my NM title may come up when they run the VIN.

    Anyway, I’m going for it. I’m primarily off-highway so my chances of getting stopped are low anyway. I’ve already got insurance on the bike and any plate is better than no plate.

    Many thanks for the suggestions. I will update when I know more.

  26. John says:

    On a whim I went by a Husky dealer. The guy told me the VT registration will overwrite the older NM title. He says NM will issue me a new title, registration, and plate if I take them the VT registration and title.

    Fingers crossed, will update either way.

  27. Kerry says:

    Just remember you will not get a VT title. They dont issue titles to any year MC less than 300cc. All you will get is a plate and an owners card. So if you re-apply for a new NM title all you will have to send along is the VT owners card, no VT title. I would think your hope at that point would be if they re issue you a new NM street legal title after seeing that the MC was licensed legally in VT. Good luck and I hope it works out for you.

  28. Chris says:

    In the case of a lost PA MC title, you can transfer the reg back into PA from VT and “overwrite” the “old title”?

    How does this apply to bikes from 1980 and older?

  29. Kerry says:

    Age of the bike should have no bearing. PennDOT requires titles for motor vehicles, no matter what the year. If you get a VT registration and use it to apply for a PA title, PennDOT will do a check on the vehicles VIN and if it turns up that there is a previous title on file with the vehicle they will not issue a new one. If there is no record on file than you should be able to get a new title issued using the VT reg card. The thing you hope for using this process is that there is no past title on file or it might not work. Im not sure this answered your question.

  30. Chris says:

    That answers my questions, thank you.

    If a PA title is being transfered (gifted, non-family) on a bike from ’80 that doesn’t run and has been sitting for a couple years, how would they calculate the 6 percent tax? NADA says $765 “fair” and N/A “poor.”

    2014 the transfer fee went to $50 here in PA right? Don’t have much dough and trying to determine how much I would need to get it in my name.

  31. Kerry says:

    If I was you I would talk to one of your local tag service reps or call PennDOT.
    If you have a PA title there is no need for you to use VT and the NADA value might not apply. A local tag service can help you with the transfer and what value is needed.
    The whole VT process is what is used by folks who bought or own a vehicle that has no title on record or unattainable title. Its a place to start the process in order to first get VT registration and then use that proof of registration to get a valid title from their state which they reside. Its basicly a “legal loop hole”.

  32. Chris says:

    What about in the case of an unresponsive title owner. Like, you were given the title for this 30+ year old, non running bike from a relative, but the owner doesn’t respond.

    Can this loop hole be of any help?

  33. Kerry says:

    If PennDOT has the old title on file than they will not issue a new title in a new name.
    Another words lets say you apply for VT registration. You get your registration from VT and then send it in to PennDOT with form MV-11 for a new PA title (and a plate if you decide to do that). PennDOT will run the VIN# and do a check on the vehicle. If it turns up an existing PA title in someone elses name, they will not issue you a new title in your name. There cant be two owners of the same vehicle. If they run the VIN and there is no PA title on file, then I would suspect that they will issue you a new title in your name. The fact that the vehicle is that old could work in your favor since from what I understand most DMV expunge older records if there is no activity on the vehicle after so many years.

  34. John says:

    Did not work for a 2008 Honda CRF230F dirt bike.

    I received a letter stating: “In order to register your motorcycle in Vermont, please provide a letter from a Vermont inspection station affirming that it meets Vermont highway standards. Please provide verification that your motorcycle was manufactured for, or has been modified for highway use.”

    Still more liberal standards than most states. At least a dirt bike can be modified. But the trip to VT from the southwest would be a bit much ;)

    Thanks all

  35. jack tackett says:

    I am building a t bucket from scratch anyway to get a title for something like that thanks jack Portsmouth ohio

  36. Andre says:

    What about if you have a 2008 bike? Then basically you are screwed?

  37. Mike says:

    So if you go through this to get a valid PA plate and registration, how do you deal with PA inspection? I think you still need to meet PA regulations to inspect, dot tires, lights, horn, mirror, odo, etc.

  38. ed says:

    @Mike
    Yes, you’re correct.

    The process explained in this article above simply gets you a legit PA title and PA registration which is the foundation to being “street-legal” not to mention now you officially own the bike.
    If you want to be 100% street legal, you need to have inspection as well.

    I know a shit ton of PA motorcycle riders / owners, and I can’t think of a single person that actually gets their motorcycles inspected. I’ve been pulled over by cops before, and they never say anything about inspection.

  39. glenn says:

    I’ve got a 2007 crf450 and a 2008 crf250.. Can I go do this in person in VT to get it faster?

  40. Jung says:

    I had a question. Sorry for asking a redundant question but I am about to look at a 1979 Honda motorcycle and the person who owns this bike last had it registered in Utah but right now it’s on Nevada where I live. they told me that they couldn’t find the title. Can I still use this process?

  41. Jung says:

    I just need to run the vin by my local dmv to make sure it wasn’t reported being stolen yes?

  42. Jung says:

    It’s only a 100cc if that helps

  43. Jeff says:

    I am about to do this process with a 1999 KTM 380 sx. I have the Certificate of Origin, bill of sale, VT form, picture of the bike, vin verified by an official inspection station ready to go.

    My question, should I send the certificate of origin and the notarized bill of sale? Or just the bill of sale? The Certificate of Origin states the bike is a “motorcycle”.

    THanks

  44. J.L. says:

    ED – THANK YOU for this info!

    I have a 2007 KTM 450sxf dirtbike that I bought from a second owner, I am the 3rd owner. It’s not been titled or tagged before me. I absolutely know it is not stolen, I have spoken with the guy that bought it when new. He offered to title it in his home state for me and send me the title to transfer it to me at a local PA notary but I discovered this way too costly.

    Prior to finding your advice here.. I had added lights, horn, mirror, and had just sent off for a tag and registration ONLY from Minnesota. MN does not title dirt bikes but I am supposed to have my tag and registration here shortly and plan to ride on that for the little I need the tag for – which is mainly to facilitate coming out of a trail system to gas up and also to travel short distances on the roads between trail systems.

    I know I will not have a MN title. Can I take my tag and registration to PA notary (with road insurance) and get the PA title and tag?

    Thanks again!

  45. John L says:

    Ed – Thanks for this info! I have a 2007 KTM 450sxf that I want to get a PA tag on just to facilitate very short trips on the street (to get gas, trail to trail, etc). Before I read your details above, I had already sent off for a MN tag and registration, which I expect in the mail any day now. MN does not issue titles for dirt bikes, only a tag and registration. For a while, I am just going to ride with the MN tag. Do you think I will be able to hand just these to a PA notary (without a MN title) and end up with full PA title, tag, registration?

  46. ed says:

    @Glenn
    No idea. Try it out. I’m not sure.

  47. ed says:

    @Jung
    Yes, you can do the VT registration for that bike and bypass trying to get or find the old title all together.

  48. ed says:

    @Jeff
    I’m not positive. Send both.

  49. ed says:

    @JL
    If the VIN number is an “off-road” type. VT will not issue you a registration. I think… I’m not 100% positive on all this info. I’m more like 97% positive.

  50. ed says:

    @John L
    I’m not sure. It’s worth a try.

  51. John L says:

    Thanks, I will try and report.

  52. Chenry says:

    So I’ve heard about this before. And I’m about to try it, but what’s the deal with Vermont and cc’s? I’m looking at 72 Honda cl450 with no title. Pretty sure there is no old pa title floating around, as I’m getting the bike from Maryland and know some history.

    Am I going to have any problems with Vermont, due to being a 450cc? I keep reading that they don’t issue titles to bikes under 300cc? So what does that mean for my situation? Will I get a Title from Vermont? or just registration card, then use that to title in pa.

    Is any of this still worth trying?

  53. Brian Kay says:

    I went this route and registered a 1990 moped . Got my tags but no plate as of yet. there was a mixup with my address two times already.

  54. jim says:

    I want to buy a car from mississippi. owner has a bill of sale from Tennessee. Will Vermont do all this through the mail without me leaving pa?

  55. jim says:

    Do I use my pa Address when applying for Vermont registration?

  56. Jeff says:

    Worked on my 19938sx I commented on above.

  57. Fred says:

    Just got my tags and registration for a 2000 Toyota Corolla (15 years old is the cut off for cars). it took about 3 weeks. I used the service with the link below. Once you send him (Justin) the required documents (basically a bill of sale and a power of attorney) and pay him, he submits the docs, and the Vermont DMV sends you the tags first, within two weeks,.then the registration about a week later Tt is a registration that doubles as a title for transfer purposes. He also accepts Paypal which protects against ripoffs.

    http://www.motorecyclenow.com

  58. Ted says:

    ok so when is the vin verification required for a car. that had me confused. and if it is required do i just bring it to the police station and ask them to do it? thanks

  59. mario f says:

    I bought a 2002 cbr with no title. Only a bill of sale. Will vt issue me a title and plates. I live in California and the dmv here makes a big deal of everything. What do you think /recommend ed.

  60. Dude says:

    WORKED FOR ME! THANX BUDDY!!!

  61. Tim says:

    Also works on cars, did it on an 89 BMW, first called to confirm everything, then sent in a check, bill of sale, and the form. 10 days later got the plates, 4 days later I got the registration. Now off to the NJ DMW

  62. garrett says:

    what kind of VT plate should i check for a 1947 ford pickup truck, theres like 50 of them on that list.

  63. Tim says:

    Anybody try using vt and Illinois?

  64. Jason says:

    VT requires a VIN Inspection to do this. California requires all out of state vehicles to have a CHP VIN inspection. Can you send a copy of the VIN inspection to VT, so you can use the original at the CA DMV? Basically, so it doesn’t need to be inspected twice?

  65. Daniel says:

    So I just got off the phone with the Vermont DMV. If the bike is under 300cc they won’t send you a plate without having the bike inspected by a Vermont dealer first.

  66. Mikegjr. says:

    @Tim (in NJ) Any progress update on getting a title in NJ using this process?

  67. Daniel says:

    Just a follow-up on the 300cc inspection thing:
    I just called again to get some more details and they said that if it’s a dirt bike that didn’t start out as street legal it needs to be verified as a road legal vehicle by an in state inspector. Otherwise, if the bike started out as a street legal vehicle you don’t need to worry about that.
    So say you have a Honda XR100, they won’t register one of those without a state inspection in Vermont. But if you get your hands on an XL100, which started out as a street legal enduro, you will not.

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  69. mario f says:

    I bought a 2002 cbr with no title. Only a bill of sale. Will vt issue me a title and plates. ? It’s a 2002 so does the bike qualify ? The last time this bike was registered was in 2011 ? California dmv says if I can’t provide a title they will put the bike under non transferable which means I will never be able to sell it when the time comes. Any ideas if the Vermont loophole will work for me ? Anyone ? Please ?,

  70. This is an extremely helpful walk-through although here in MA we don’t have “auto tags” places. I recently did this for a 1971 Bultaco Alpina with no title that I want to put on the road. I received my Vermont plates and registration in about 20 days. I recommend waiting a month or two before transferring the VT registration for a MA title/registration so you don’t have to double-up on the taxes. Now on to inspection ;)

  71. Steven says:

    Hey guys, quick question. Im trying to title a moped…it has no VIN or a NADA value. How should I proceed to get a new title? Just leave VIN blank and a give the price I bought the bike for?

    Thanks!

  72. Jake says:

    @mario f, have you had any luck? I too have a 2002 cbr. I bought the bike w/ a clean title, but it turned out the frame wasn’t clean (had obviously been wrecked and not reported, once you take the plastics off). Seller vanished. Don’t have bill of sale for “clean” title bike.

    I bought a clean (undamaged) frame from a salvage place, but no title there. Doesn’t show up on free VIN check as stolen or salvaged either. I’d like to rebuild the bike around the good frame and get it titled that way. Does anyone think this will work? If this won’t work I may revert to a previous plan to cut out the bad part of the frame and replace it with same good part from the good frame. But I’d rather the frame not be repaired if I can help it.

  73. Chris says:

    How abt salvage cars

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