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Bought bike with no title, bill of sale, easiest way?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by cafetools, Feb 13, 2019.

  1. cafetools

    cafetools XS650 Addict

    I bought a bike several months ago and got a bill of sale ($500 purchase) no title. Owner was a retired fireman and I belive the bike was not stolen.

    What's the easiest, quickest, cheapest and all around best method to get a title? The tricky part is that I already restored this bike and now it's worth thousands of dollars, if that matters. I did take pictures of all 4 sides before resto.

    App for duplicate? Abandoned vechile?
  2. xjwmx

    xjwmx XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Call your DMV. A quick glance shows it's simple to get a title in Utah.
    gggGary likes this.
  3. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Good luck. Scary stuff investing money in a bike you don't really own...... Some states smell cash and don't care what you paid, base the "value" on blue book, $$$$$ales tax revenue. There's been more than one guy lost the bike after he was done fixing it up, when an :eek:riginal owner showed up. There's even rumours of a scam based on doing that...
    That said, I've done what you've done, Livin' on the edge. LOL.. Not a restoration but started with a $100 "parts only" hulk.
    DSCN3025.JPG DSCN3453.JPG
    DSCN3039.JPG DSCN3458.JPG
    azman857 and Mailman like this.
  4. cafetools

    cafetools XS650 Addict

    I know what you mean, I just kept putting this title thing off and wanted to work on restoring the bike... Big risk I knew it.
    gggGary likes this.
  5. YamadudeXS650C

    YamadudeXS650C Central New York XS650 Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    I suggest stopping in to your local DMV, and ask to speak to a supervisor. With a forlorn look on your face, ask what could be done to get the bike on the road.
    Jim likes this.
  6. What state are you in? In some it’s no big deal. I know Georgia doesn’t require a title at all. In some states, you can get a bonded title easily. In some, like Pennsylvania, the situation is impossible.
  7. Machine

    Machine Race the wind Top Contributor

    Utah ? Cant be as bad as Washington.
    WA does like to tax imported vehicles. All of mine came across the river from Oregon.
    WA always gets its cut :thumbsdown:
    Good luck to you in Utah !
    Brassneck likes this.
  8. 650Skull

    650Skull Dinosaur Lives Top Contributor

    YamadudeXS650C likes this.
  9. Brassneck

    Brassneck XS650 Guru

    I picked up a bike without a title for next to nothing. WA has a process, that's for sure, but other than being a bit tedious and time consuming...it's not all that bad depending on how you acquired the thing....if I recall correctly, the steps below outline a quick and dirty for WA state. (For me, I bought it from a guy who had found it on his property...no title, no interest in it...and couldn't be bothered...so I had to go the long route)

    Step 1) Have the previous owner relinquish rights to the bike. (There's a form to do that. Send via certified mail w/proof of delivery)
    Step 2) Get either the form back signed and relinquished or Don't get it back and have receipt of delivery that it was sent:
    2a) If you get the form back, you can go straight to the DMV and get a new title...simple.
    2b) If you don't get the form, then take the receipt of delivery/failure to sign to the DMV, and they'll give you a form to take to the State Patrol.
    3) Make appointment w/State Patrol to have it inspected.
    4) Show up to appointment and they'll verify it's not stolen and has the required equipment to be road legal
    5) Take documentation from State Patrol back to DMV and they'll issue you a REGISTRATION and classify it as a "Title in doubt" which comes with a 3 yr. waiting period (For the previous owner to potentially claim it). No title is issued at this point.
    6) You can now ride the bike (legally), sell it, do what you want with it. For the next 3 yrs, it's as if you own it and when the 3 yr period is up, you apply for a title and it's yours.

    No, not simple, but can be done without a whole lot of work. Assuming the previous owner doesn't come looking for it. In my case, VERY doubtful anyone is looking for it...so I wasn't worried.
    gggGary likes this.
  10. 50 states. 50 different sets of rules.
  11. rjz1

    rjz1 XS650 Member

    Does anyone know how it works in Minnesota if I have the most recent Registration (still dated to 1998 or something). I do not have the title. I found on their website says "Original vehicle title (if the title is not available you may use a current vehicle registration card)"

    Does the current vehicle registration really mean current?

    I also have a titled neck as backup in case I can't get this to work. The problem is that I'm living in and fixing the bike in Pennsylvania at the moment (which, yes, PA is the worst for vehicles...) My wife lives in Minnesota, so I would just have to get the bike there if this is the case...
  12. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Think any proof of ownership will help alot. Got into a hoo-hah with minn long ago about a norton title, copy of reply paperwork for your enjoyment. I had gotten a bit snotty with them about getting a lost title not in my name by mail....

    min norton title.jpg
    From an era where PO's names were much easier to get. We used to go down to DMV they would let us go in the records room and look up owners from the licence plate number books. Yeah they had books of all WI license plate numbers in alpha numeric order! If the cops radioed in a plate# they would go in the room and look it up! And they'd just let us go in, do the same, things have changed a bit.
    YamadudeXS650C likes this.
  13. YamadudeXS650C

    YamadudeXS650C Central New York XS650 Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    This was a fun reminder of the beginnings of your "parts only hulk" :)

    ...and it resonated with me cuz I finally dragged my '81 Special out of the shed a few days ago,

    81 Xs650.jpeg

    ...and brought it into the winter workshop for a "wake-up".
    Last year, a generous member (you'll recognize him..:)) sold me the only missing items, a nice '81 carb set, for a great price.
    What I'll make of it, is yet to be determined....
    gggGary likes this.
  14. YamadudeXS650C

    YamadudeXS650C Central New York XS650 Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    Most or all of the motorcycling websites appear to have xtensive threads regarding this topic.
    The most in-depth discussions I've encountered have been at ADV Rider
    I recommend that you do a search there.
  15. 59Tebo

    59Tebo 59Tebo Top Contributor

    Well, Café, here in the Republik of New York State, you'd be S.O.L. The trick, on this side of the planet (so I've heard), is to go to the DMV in Vermont, with a bill of sale, an affidavit saying it's yours, and a 'rubbing' of the VIN. Vermont does not issue titles, but after they do the (exhaustive) search, you get a registration card, sticker, and license plate. Then you take it to the NYS DMV and transfer it. They give you the reg, plate, and that elusive title. Sounds easy, right? Having purchased (what I refer to as the "$50.00 North country lawn ornament") an '81, if the titling process is too involved (time or $$wise), I'll part it out, and buy something with a title. Sheeesh!...
    gggGary likes this.
  16. rjz1

    rjz1 XS650 Member

    Thanks Gary. So you did eventually get the MN title with just proof of ownership? (even though they lost it initially)
  17. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    yeah we got it, note date, this was 1980 LOL
    TwoManyXS1Bs likes this.
  18. Well, I just toted my mess to Mississippi from Georgia. God, I'm homesick! I tried to buy tags for the bikes I'm riding. Title...check! Tag reciept from GA....:wtf: No tag receipt from the old state, no tag in Mississippi. I have four bikes without titles. Can I get a MS title? Yes. Go get title bond. Great. May I then by a tag? Not without a tag receipt. :banghead:
    gggGary likes this.
  19. I went back today and got tags for the runners. The man in charge told me not to get in a hurry about a title bond. Says he may be able to work with me. “You shouldn’t be fined for moving here.” :bow: I’ll go back early April and see what hoops I have to jump through, if any.
    gggGary likes this.

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