How to Transfer Ownership at the New Jersey DMV

by Jenny Parker

If you've recently bought or sold a new vehicle in New Jersey, one of the first things you will need to do is officially transfer the title. Transferring the title will provide proof of the new legal owner of the vehicle. This is necessary to register the car so that it can be driven. It takes only a bit of paperwork and one trip to a local New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission office to transfer ownership of a newly purchased car.

Fill in the required information on the back of the title, including the buyer's name, address and driver's license number, the date of sale, sale price and the vehicle's odometer reading at the time it was sold. The seller must remove the license plates from the car and either surrender them to the Motor Vehicle Commission or transfer them to a different vehicle.

Complete the buyer's section on the back of the title. This will require only the buyer's signature and driver's license number.

Fill out an Application for Certificate of Ownership. This can be found online and printed out or acquired from a Motor Vehicle Commission office. This form will ask for the buyer's personal information plus basic information on the vehicle such as its make, model, body type and Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). The buyer will also have to provide the name and address of the lien holder if the purchase of the vehicle has been financed.

Gather the completed Application for Certificate of Ownership, signed title and proof of insurance if you are buying the vehicle. Go to your local Motor Vehicle Commission office. An agent at the office will look over the paperwork to make sure that everything has been filled out correctly.

Pay the title transfer fee if you are the buyer of the vehicle. As of April 2011, this fee is $60 for a vehicle that has been paid for in full and $85 for a financed vehicle. The buyer will also need to pay the sales tax, which will vary depending on the sale price of the car. The buyer will be allowed to register the vehicle in his name once ownership has been transferred and the applicable fees paid.


  • close If the title is not transferred into your name within 10 business days from the sale date, you will be required to pay a penalty fee, which is $25 as of April 2011.

Items you will need

About the Author

Jenny Parker is a New England-based entrepreneur who has been writing since 1995. Parker writes extensively on creative self-employment and genealogy; her work has appeared on and She also has self-published several short story collections and is currently working on her first non-fiction book chronicling the history of her ancestors in America.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Jupiterimages/ Images