Howdy, Driver? When you are unable to obtain a title for a car after trying other options, you can get a court order. Court order allows you to apply to the Registrar of the Bureau of Motor Vehicles directly and submit the proof of ownership of the vehicle such as a bill of sale, or invoice, and a photo ID. In most states, you need a bonded title or a certificate of title surety.
To obtain a court-ordered title, you will a court case with the circuit court or your local county. It is similar to filling lawsuits and could also be called “in rem” or “writ of mandamus”. In this regard, you are informing the judge that the vehicle belongs to you and that you should be allowed to obtain a title and put the car in your name.
Some of the states known to recognize court orders for titles include Ohio, Indiana, Oklahoma, and Georgia. The procedures for obtaining the court order would depend on your jurisdiction, which you have to inquire from the court you intend to file the case.
According to CarTitles, you would typically file an affidavit of facts indicating what you know about the history of the vehicle and how you came to possess it. Additionally, you would be required to make a public notice in the local legal organ newspaper calling out on any parties that claim interest of the car to come forward.
After background research on the vehicle carried out by the court, you will be given a date for the hearing. You are to return to the courthouse to hear your fate regarding the approval or disapproval of your ownership claim of the vehicle.
Depending on your state, you may have to fill additional formal documents or write the complaint in the format outlined by the court.
Below are links to some DMV websites highlighting the required information regarding how to get a court ordered title:
How to Apply for a Court Ordered Title
I have compared the processes of applying for a court ordered title for both Indiana, Ohio, and Georgia after receiving a court order. The difference in the procedure for each state is barely notable.
In this article, I highlight the steps according to the Georgia Department of Revenue.
Below are the steps to apply for a court ordered title:
Obtain a Court Order
As mentioned above, you must get a court order to be eligible to apply for a court ordered title.
The certified Court Order must be signed by the Clerk of the Court and sealed or stamped. Also, make sure that the description of the vehicle, including, VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), year, make, and model of the vehicle is included in the Court Order.
Prepare the Requirements
The requirements to apply for court ordered title include the following:
- Completed and signed Form T-7 Bill of Sale.
- Proof of ownership documents
- A duly completed and signed MV-1 Title/Tag Application form.
- A copy of the Court Order.
- A certified levying order (if vehicle information is absent in the Court Order).
- Completed and signed Form T-22B Certification of Inspection (if the title is not submitted).
- A signed and notarized affidavit.
- A copy of the newspaper advertisement announcing the sale of the vehicle posted at the courthouse (if you are the authorized seller of the car by the court).
- The vehicle’s license plate (do not use a fake license plate).
- A specified fee.
Note: Submit a signed and notarized affidavit if you are the authorized seller and buyer of the car stating that a sale was held publicly and that you or the purchaser won the bid.
The copy of the notice or newspaper that you posted at the courthouse must include the description of the vehicle including the VIN, year, make, and model.
The additional paperwork that you will submit is a completed and duly signed Form T-158 Report of and/or Surrender of GA License Plate.