Titling your Vehicle
The estimated cost to register and title a vehicle for the first time is $420.00, plus any sales tax due. The state of Florida imposes 6% sales tax on the full purchase price less trade-in. Pinellas County residents pay an additional 1% on the first $5,000.
All applications for title must be signed with the applicant’s full name. All transfers of ownership must be completed within 30 days of the sale date on the title. Failure to do so will result in a $20.00 penalty levied at the time of transfer. When application is made for a Florida Title Certificate, the title fee is $75.75 (or $85.75 for a vehicle with an out-of-state title). For each lien recorded, a fee of $2.00 is also charged. The purchaser’s name, selling price, date of sale, odometer reading and date read, must be completed by the seller in the “transfer of title by seller” section.
All person(s) whose name(s) will appear on the title must appear at our office and show proper identification (driver license or appropriate photo ID). If one of the persons whose name will appear on the title cannot be physically present, call 727- 464- 7777 for information about a Power of Attorney (POA), which gives a person the legal right to sign on the other person’s behalf. Find out more information on how to complete a Florida title for transfer.
Additional information, relevant forms, samples and the latest updates are available from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles .
New Vehicles (Never titled in any state)
All new vehicles must have a Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin (MCO), which must be signed by a licensed dealer for transfer to buyer. A bill of sale is necessary if the vehicle is coming from an out-of-state dealer. The 6% state sales tax will be collected on the purchase price less any trade amount or previous sales tax paid in a state reciprocal with Florida. In addition, Pinellas County residents will pay the 1% Pinellas County local option sales tax on the first $5,000 of the taxable amount. An odometer disclosure signed by seller and buyer either on the bottom of the MCO or on a separate disclosure form is required. If the vehicle was purchased from a licensed Florida motor vehicle dealer, the dealer must complete the title paperwork. It cannot be given to the customer to be completed.
Vehicles Previously Titled in Another State
An out-of-state certificate of title must be submitted as proof of ownership if that state issues titles. If a transfer of ownership is involved, it must be properly assigned to the new owner. If the vehicle has been titled in your name for less than six months, a bill of sale showing proof of sales tax paid must be provided. If sales tax paid is not equivalent to Florida sales tax, you may be subject to additional sales tax. A title fee, lien fee, if applicable, and initial registration fee must be paid. In addition, you must have proof of Florida insurance to obtain a license plate.
Please bring your vehicle so our staff can perform a vehicle identification number (VIN) verification, weather permitting, along with your current registration information and the name and address of the bank your vehicle is currently financed through, if applicable.
All used motor vehicles, including trailers with a weight of 2,000 pounds or more, which are not currently titled inFlorida, must have a vehicle identification number (VIN ) verification when registered and titled in Florida. In most cases, our staff
can perform the vehicle identification number (VIN) verification at our offices, weather permitting. There is no fee for this service. If you are unable to bring your vehicle to our offices, there are several other parties who may perform the VIN verification:
- A law enforcement officer from any state
- A licensed Florida State motor vehicle dealer
- An out-of-state motor vehicle dealer (must be on the dealer’s letterhead)
- A Florida DMV Compliance Examiner/Inspector
- A Florida Notary Public
- Provost Marshal, Commissioned Officer, Warrant Officer or Legalman on active military duty
Click here for the VIN verification form on our forms page, or call 727-464-7777 for additional information.
VIN verification is NOT required on the following:
- New motor vehicles regardless of whether purchased in Florida or out of state
- Mobile homes
- Trailer-type recreational vehicles (travel trailers, camp trailers, truck campers, and fifth wheel recreational trailers)
- Trailers and semitrailers with a weight of less than 2,000 pounds
- Vehicles currently titled in Florida
Vehicles Previously Titled in Another Country
If a motor vehicle or mobile home was purchased in a foreign country, 6% Florida sales or use tax and local discretionary sales surtax is required to be paid before a certificate of title and license plate can be issued. The amount on which the tax is applied is the larger of the following:
- 80% of the loan value
- The fair market value on date of entry into the state of Florida
- The outstanding lien on the motor vehicle at the time of entry into Florida
No credit is allowed for any sales or use tax paid to a foreign country.
NOTE: If a vehicle was originally titled in Florida (sales tax was paid), was taken to another country, and is returning from that country in the same owner’s name, sales or use tax would NOT be due. Vehicles entering Florida from a foreign country must have the vehicle identification number verified by a DMV Compliance Examiner/Inspector, including dealer transactions.
EXCEPTION: Any Florida resident on active military duty out of state (applying for Florida title on a used vehicle with proof of ownership from a foreign country), may have the VIN verified by any out-of-state law enforcement officer or military law enforcement authority.
Please call 727-464-7777 for additional information.
Vehicles Previously Titled in Florida
The purchaser must furnish a properly assigned Florida Title to the Tax Collector’s Office for transfer. The Transfer of Title area will include the purchaser(s) name(s), selling price, and correct odometer information completed by the seller. All owners must be present to sign the appropriate applications and show proper identification (driver license or appropriate photo ID). If one of the persons whose name will appear on the title cannot be present, a Power of Attorney may be used. Proof of Florida insurance is required to purchase a license plate. The 6% state sales tax applies to the full purchase price, and the 1% Pinellas County local option sales tax (applicable to the first $5,000 of the taxable amount) will be collected for Pinellas residents.
When names on the title are joined by the word “and,” all owners must sign the appropriate application. The application must be signed by the lienholder if an outstanding lien exists. If the address on record is different than the applicant’s current address, documentation/legal ID will be required. A current odometer reading must be submitted with every application. The fee for duplicate title is $75.75.