There are a number of reasons why your car title is important and will come in handy especially when you want to insure your car or maybe the police have pulled you over on the highway. Failing to produce your car registration details can be a challenge and may lead to a fine.
However, you shouldn’t lose sleep over it, even if you’ve misplaced your car registration.
The registration isn’t the only piece of document that contains your car’s title number. In this article, we provide you with different options for finding your car title number when you’ve lost the registration.
What Is a Car Title?
A car title is an essential document that establishes the legal owner of a vehicle (whether one or more). Other than that, it also displays a variety of important information, including the Vehicle Identification Number, make, model, and year of manufacture.
Having a valid title is paramount whenever you wish to transfer ownership of your automobile. In addition to the owner's name and address, the certificate includes information such as odometer reading on the last date transferred along with lienholder status — allowing for smooth processing when selling, salvaging, or insuring vehicles. Should original documentation go missing through unfortunate events like theft or misplacement; specific State Motor Vehicle Departments enable access to obtain replacement titles without delay.
What is a Car Title Number
With a car title in hand, you can get information about the model and owner of the vehicle. However, if your title has gone missing, the unique multi-digit character sequence known as a "title number" or “document/control number” is still very useful for tracking down that lost document - making sure to get back on track with owning your vehicle isn't too much of an inconvenience!
You will also need your title number when you want to apply for a lien or when insuring your car. Both the lienholders and insurance agencies will ask for this information to confirm that you’re the legitimate owner of the vehicle.
One thing you want to note about the car title number is that it isn’t fixed, unlike the Vehicle Identification Number. This is to say that once ownership of the car changes, the new owner can get a new title number. However, whether or not the number changes after every purchase will depend on the state you’re in.
Is the Title Number Important?
The title number is often seen as a means to understand the car's ownership, but it merely serves as an identifier in legal records. To gain further insight into a vehicle's background and history, you must look beyond just its title number.
So, if you have the title number without the original Certificate of Title, it might not be of much value!
Where to Find the Title Number When You Lose the Car Registration
Looking up your title number after misplacing the car registration may seem daunting, but have no fear! The key is to check the title of your vehicle. With a few simple steps, you'll be well on your way to finding that elusive information with ease.
The thing is, you don’t exactly need a physical copy of the document since many Departments of Motor Vehicles (DMVs) today keep this information online. As such, your priority should be to contact the DMV in your area or visit their online portals to try and access the information or request access.
Below we discuss ways to obtain your car title number in case you misplaced the registration:
Ask the Lienholder
If you happen to purchase your car through a lienholder, the owner of the car is the lienholder when you're still paying for the car, meaning the title also remains with the lienholder. In such a case contact your lienholder to access the title number.
However, if you’ve settled your debt with the lien and still haven’t been issued with the car title, you need to contact the lienholder. This is because ownership must transfer to you when the debt is settled and you’ll need the title to insure or register the car.
Check the Renewal Notice
For those who may have misplaced their car registration or can't locate it, the renewal notice from your local MVA or DMV is a great source for tracking down your title number. Generally found on the same line as a model and make of vehicle information, this document will ensure you get back to cruising in no time!
Look Up the Title Number
Nowadays, the DMV keeps an electronic version, in addition to the physical title. This allows you to log on to the DMV’s website and check the title number. In most cases, the eight or seven-digit title number should be at the top left corner next to the Vehicle Identification Number.
Nevertheless, in some states, you’ll find it at the bottom corner of the document. All in all, you shouldn’t have a problem locating it, especially with the words “Title Number” next to it!
Can You Get a New Car Title?
If you’ve lost your car title and can't find it, don't worry! You can easily apply for a duplicate. Simply head to the DMV in your state - but remember that each state has its own process for filing this request so double-check before visiting.
While you can fill out the application online in some states, others require you to do it in person.
To receive your new title, you'll need to gather some important documents including a driver's license and proof of registration. Once all paperwork has been submitted, the DMV will typically process it within two weeks or so bringing you one step closer to that special document!
Alternatively, you may also file your application via phone, email, or even online. The process is no different, and it will only cost you around 20 bucks depending on the state you’re applying from.
There are many ways you can find your vehicle’s title number, aside from the car registration. If you still have the car title, you’ll find the number printed on the bottom or top corner of the title. The article also provides you with alternative options you can use to access your title number.
However, you want to note that the tile number may not be that important if you don’t have the original car title. This is because it is merely a record-keeping reference number used by the authorities to find the original Certificate of Title.
So if you are having trouble finding the car title, use the above guide to search for your title number!