Mike, do you know how long does it take to get a replacement car title in Virginia? This is one of the questions our readers ask a lot. Well, we´ve got you covered.
Your car title is an important document that needs to be placed in a safe folder or file and kept inside the glove compartment—center console or another secure area—of your vehicle.
Without it, you can’t sell it, give it away, or even donate it to a charity.
So, how long does it take to get a replacement car title in Virginia? On average you can expect between 3 to 4 hours to get a replacement car title in Virginia for In-person visits. Online orders are more convenient but are followed by a few business days to receive a replacement, you can expect between 4 to 7 days. However, in both case, you must have the proper documentation to apply.
Lacking a title on your vehicle creates a lot of limitations on what you can and cannot do. While you don’t need it just to drive around, if you ever want to take out a loan with your vehicle as collateral, you’ll have to have it.
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What Documentation Will You Need To Get A Replacement Car Title In Virginia?
Whether you go online or to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, you’ll need to have the appropriate documentation to get your title replaced. However, before you use either method, you’ll have to file a Replacement and Substitute Title (VSA 67).
When you file the VSA 67, it has to be in person. Since you’re filing for a replacement title, you’ll only have to fill out section 4 of the document. There is a $15 replacement fee that you’ll have to pay when you submit the form.
Going To The DMV
When you arrive at the DMV, you’ll need:
- VSA 67 form
- Social security card
- Vehicle registration
- Driver’s license or state-issued ID.
Optional/If Applicable –
- Court order
- Lien documentation
Once your information is processed and verified, you’ll have to pay a fee—including applicable taxes—before you’ll receive your replacement title.
Online is easier and doesn’t require as much documentation, although you will have to verify a good deal of personal information.
When you access the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles website, you’ll be required to enter your Driver’s License information and/or customer ID. You’ll also obtain a PIN # for the current and future online transactions.
After your DL is verified, you’ll go through a series of questions and identity verification screens before submitting the payment for a replacement title.
Once that’s covered, the VA DMV will mail out your title and you should receive it within a few days.
How To Turn In A Damaged Title In Virginia
If you’re looking to replace your current title because the old one is damaged, it is recommended that you turn it in at the Virginia DMV. All you have to do is bring it to your local DMV.
While it’s not entirely necessary—you could simply file as if it were a lost title—if there is still legible information, it may save you some headache with additional documentation.
If you apply for a new title to replace a lost one and later discover that title, you can destroy it in whatever manner you see fit, as the previous title is no longer valid once you receive a new one.
How Do You Get A Replacement Title From An Inherited Vehicle?
The only thing that’s different from ordering a replacement title under normal circumstances, is that you have to provide a certified or notarized death certificate to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.
Everything else applies, including if your relative—who passed away—has a damaged title that still exists.
The Virginia DMV highly recommends turning over that title anyway, despite the fact that it is invalidated when the new one takes effect.
What If You Need To Make Changes Or Corrections To Your Title?
Your vehicle’s title has all the important information connecting your vehicle to you and your lienholder—if applicable. If you need to make changes, you should do so immediately to avoid difficulties down the road.
- Lienholder’s information (unless you own the car outright)
- License plate Number
- Vehicle’s information – make, model, year, and VIN Number
- Specification information on the vehicle
- Name and address
If you lose your title and your name has changed, legally or via marriage/divorce, it will make it that much harder to get a replacement title because the information has to be updated before you can get the new title.
For instance, something as simple as a registration renewal could become a real headache if you haven’t kept your title’s information current.
The Virginia DMV won’t renew your registration if your current information doesn’t match the title.
If you change addresses—even if it’s something right down the road—get married, legally change your name, divorce, or any number of things that are different from the information on your vehicle’s title, you should make the corrections through the Virginia DMV.
You’ll use the same form—Application for Supplemental and Transfer Liens or Replacement and Substitute Title (VSA 66)—to make a name change on your title.
You’ll also have to provide marriage, divorce, or legal documents showing your name change.
Also, your name change will have to be reflected on your Virginia State Driver’s License.
The application fee is $15. Once the forms are filed and fees are paid, your vehicle’s title will be updated by the Virginia DMV.
For address changes, you’ll submit an Address Change Notification (ISD 01). Unlike the name change information, an address change is only $5. Once you file the application and pay the fee, you’re all set.
Is A Substitute Title And A Replacement Title The Same Thing?
A substitute title isn’t the same as a replacement title in a few ways. It’s usually issued in cases where there are co-owners on the title and one needs to be released due to death or divorce.
The Virginia DMV issues a substitute title if you need to make changes on the existing one, and replacement when no changes need to be made, you just need the title replaced.
To remove a deceased person from a vehicle’s title you’ll need:
- A certified/notarized death certificate
- The current title—if you don’t have it, you’ll have to file for a replacement
- Payment for the substitute title fee
Things get more complicated if you are listed on the title, but don’t have the right to survivorship. You’ll have to file an Authority to Transfer Virginia Title Certification” (VSA-24, a form proving that the property of the deceased falls under Virginia’s small estate law, or a copy of a will and VSA-24.
You’ll also need the current title—or file the VSA 67 for a replacement—and proof of your current address.
Once you file the appropriate paperwork and pay the substitute title application fees, you’ll get a new title, voiding the previous one.
Does Virginia Do Electronic Replacement Titles?
Virginia has an Electronic Lien Program, but it doesn’t issue replacement titles electronically.
The Electronic Lien Program works when a new title application is made for a vehicle that has a lien on it. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles issues an electronic lien/title to the lienholder via email.
Once the lienholder opens the email, they will file the information within their system.
Once the vehicle is paid off, the lienholder has ten days to send that information to the Virginia DMV. Once it’s received by the DMV, it is matched with current information you have on file for that vehicle, and a paper title is mailed to you.
This doesn’t cost you any money and is done automatically by the lienholder and the DMV. It saves the Virginia DMV a lot of money to forego paper documentation and the process of filing and storing physical documents.
Thankfully, those savings are passed on to you.
All Things Considered
Getting a replacement car title in Virginia isn’t an arduous process, nor does it take a crazy amount of time. DMVs—regardless of which state—are notoriously slow at the best of times.
However, getting a replacement title isn’t complicated enough to create an inordinate level of paperwork and much of the process can take place online.
Information changes, co-ownership, and the unfortunate circumstances of a death in the family or of a friend, complicates matters. But the state of Virginia has a pretty streamlined process.
So long as you know what paperwork to file, where to file it, the associated fees, and the documentation necessary to file, you’ll be in good hands and the process will go forward pretty quickly.
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