How to Get an Auto Title when a Person Has Died in Arizona

by Si Kingston

The Arizona Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) will transfer a vehicle title into your name, even if the original owner did not transfer or sign over the title before his death. The MVD will only transfer a vehicle title if at least 30 days has expired past the owner's death, the vehicle's value doesn't exceed $50,000, and if you have the right to inherit the vehicle by will or intestate succession, which implies that you are the spouse or child of the deceased. If the vehicle exceeds $50,000 in value, there is no will, you aren't the rightful heir or there is a dispute, action in probate court is required.

Step 1

Obtain a certified death certificate. A certified death certificate can be ordered from a local Arizona vital records office. The applicant must be 18 and be able to provide proof of relationship. Proof of relationship would include a birth or marriage certificate that shows your relationship to the deceased. Only spouses, immediate family members and legal representatives may order a certified birth certificate. The cost of a certified death certificate is $10, as of 2010.

Step 2

Complete the non-probate affidavit form. This form is required by the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division and is used to transfer a vehicle from the deceased owner to the applicant. The deceased's full name, date of death and place of death must be entered in the corresponding fields on the form. The VIN, year, make and model of the vehicle must also be entered. You must also duly swear that you are the right heir by will or by intestate succession. If not, see Tips for probate information.

Step 3

Have your signature on the non-probate affidavit form notarized. You must sign the form in front of a certified notary or MVD agent. When you sign this document, you are also swearing that the vehicle's value does not exceed $50,000, the owner died more than 30 days prior to completing this form and you are rightfully entitled to the decedent's property.

Step 4

Submit the completed form, vehicle title, state-issued identification and certified death certificate to the MVD representative. You are required to pay the title transfer fee of $4, as of 2010, and take care of any back registration before the title is transferred to your name.

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