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   >> Horn Depot

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TwoForFlinching
< 25 posts
02/11/08 10:45 AM
Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferred

I sold an old car about 6 months ago and signed the title over to the buyer. Today, I got a certified letter from Southside Wrecker -- apparently the car got towed and is now impounded. Obviously, the buyer never completed the title transfer, so the car got traced back to me. The value of the car is probably less than the impound/tow/storage fees at this point. And of course, I don't have the title anymore, so even getting it out of the impound lot will be time consuming and difficult. What are my options?




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speaksoftly
< 25 posts
02/11/08 11:05 AM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferred [re: TwoForFlinching]

Intriguing question. I just sold my vehicle a couple weeks ago, and hope that nothing like this happens to me.

Did you complete a Texas Motor Vehicle Transfer Notification? You can download the form from the TX-DOT website. Fill in the buyer information from your Bill of Sale.

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TwoForFlinching
< 25 posts
02/11/08 11:15 AM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferre [re: speaksoftly]

In reply to:

Did you complete a Texas Motor Vehicle Transfer Notification? You can download the form from the TX-DOT website. Fill in the buyer information from your Bill of Sale.




No... and unfortunately, I no longer have a record of who I sold it to (well, I remember his first name... that's it). I've only lived in Texas a couple years, and was unfamiliar with the title transfer process here (it's quite different where I'm from - both parties must sign the title in front of a notary, then the seller submits the application for the transfer).




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speaksoftly
< 25 posts
02/11/08 11:36 AM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferre [re: TwoForFlinching]

I think that is the ideal way here, as well - take it to the tax assessor and get everything in order there. I sold mine after hours for the office, so buffed up on all the paperwork.

I am not sure what to do next in your case, but would be interested in hearing how it turns out. Best of luck!

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NCAAFBALLROX
2500+ posts
02/11/08 12:03 PM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferred [re: TwoForFlinching]

Especially if you're selling a beater for very little money, you need to be careful with a title.

One of the guys on my roofing crew says that often, 'illegals' will buy a vehicle & not transfer the title so if they get in an accident, they can just ditch the ride & not look back (no insurance, obviously).

NOT my guys. First of all, they have 'green' cards.. They have both dualies fully insured (I know this for certain because one of them was rear ended by a white dude on Airport Boulevard - wiped out the back 1/2 of the truck & the other guy didn't have any insurance... he was too drunk to run).

Fast forward to 3 or 4 weeks later, you couldn't tell it had been in a wreck. My guy's insurance covered uninsured drivers.






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Bernard
1000+ posts
02/11/08 02:37 PM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferred [re: TwoForFlinching]

Toss the letter in the trash and forget about it.

In reply to:

My guy's insurance covered uninsured drivers.




...or one of the eight other guys he shares a one bedromm apartment with works at body shop and did the job gratis.

Bernard

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TxStHorn
2500+ posts
02/11/08 02:51 PM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferre [re: TwoForFlinching]

I wouldn't concern myself with it.

The worst would be if you get sued for something involving the vehicle after you sold it.

The sale can be confirmed by a notarized verification regarding the sale:

Here are some cites to cases that might help. These cases hold that, assuming a valid agreement between the parties to sell a vehicle exists, technical problems with the sales or title paperwork are immaterial in determining whether there was an actual sale. These were pulled several years ago, so there may be more current cases.

Gulf Insurance Company v. Bobo, 599 S.W.2d 847 (Tex. 1980); Phillips Ford, Inc. v. St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Company, 465 S.W.2d 933 (Tex. 1971); Negarien v. David Taylor Cadillac, 705 S.W.2d 809 (Tex. App. -Houston 1986, no writ); and Rush v. Smitherman, 294 S.W.2d 873 (Tex.Civ. App. -San Antonio 1956, writ ref’d). None of these cases address the issue before the Court.

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TwoForFlinching
< 25 posts
02/11/08 02:51 PM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferre [re: TwoForFlinching]

Spoke with somebody knowledgeable at the towing company... they said to disregard the letter they had sent me. Their files indicated somebody else was indeed the owner. Maybe the title transfer did go through after all. Apparently, my old car had been involved in the crime, as the car was on hold with the towing company, under an APD detective's name. Whatever, not my problem.

I was worried that I would have to pay the towing/storage fees, then try to sell the car again to recoup the costs. Glad that won't be necessary.






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accuratehornSponsor
2500+ posts
02/11/08 04:11 PM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferred [re: TwoForFlinching]

There's two things you can do, but sounds like you already got the answer: ignore the letter, because the salvage yard won't come after you for the fees, they will eventually file a lien for the title and take possession of the vehicle, then dispose of it legally; or you can go to the DPS, get the proper form, and file that you sold the car on the approximate date, and state that you do not have a record of the new owner.
In the future, always tear off that top part of the title and send it in to state you sold the car, the fee is $5 I think.

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speaksoftly
25+ posts
02/11/08 07:00 PM
Re: Sold My Car But The Title Was Never Transferred [re: accuratehorn]

i am glad that you got your answer quickly, and that it ended in an amenable way!

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