How to Transfer a Car Title in Illinois
Published Aug 16, 2021
If you’re new to Illinois, you may notice that the state’s title transfer process is a little different than in other states. To begin, rather than having a DMV, Illinois’ Secretary of State department is responsible for all motor vehicle and driver license services.
Newcomers are frequently shocked by the SOS’s service prices in comparison to standard DMV pricing in neighboring states. Fortunately, we’re here to ensure you’re not taken by surprise. This article will walk you through the process of your Illinois title transfer.
Regulations for a title transfer in Illinois
The following are the state’s regulations regarding the Illinois title transfer:
- According to state law, drivers must submit an Application for Vehicle Transaction for any service involving car plates, titles, or registration. To complete this form, you will almost certainly require an identification card and a driver’s license number.
- According to Illinois law, the recipient or purchaser of any vehicle transferred within the state must submit a Private Party Vehicle Tax Transaction form (form RUT-50) and pay sales tax on the vehicle within 30 days of the transfer.
- Without a certified title, Illinois law prohibits the sale or transfer of a car.
- Under state law, every vehicle sold in the state that weighs less than 16,000 pounds or is less than ten years old must include an odometer disclosure statement (except for cars without an odometer.)
- Notably, Illinois law does not need a bill of sale for private sales, albeit preparing one has a number of advantages.
What will you need?
A Certified Title (Owner signed)
- Tax Form RUT-50 (get this at the Office of the Secretary of State, or through the Illinois Department of Revenue)
- Application for Vehicle Transaction (Form VSD 190)
- Bill of sale (optional)
- Odometer Disclosure Statement
- A valid form of taxes payments and paperwork fees
- Affidavit of Correction (if applicable)
Depending on your situation, you may require additional documentation for your title transfer.
For example, if you are registered as a co-owner of a car and the other owner dies, you will be required to supply a copy of their death certificate in addition to the above paperwork and costs. If you are the new owner of the vehicle, the title must also be signed by the previous owner.
A Quick Guide to Illinois Title Transfer
Step 1: Get the completed title from the transferor.
In any state, the first step in transferring a title is to obtain the completed title from the transferor. The VIN, mileage, the transferor’s information, your information, and both parties’ signatures should all be included in the original title.
Step 2: Ensure that the information on the title is correct.
To simplify the process of transferring your Illinois title, ask yourself the following questions while inspecting the new title:
- Are there any unsigned co-owners, such as a friend or family member?
- Are the signatures identical to those on the title?
- Is the VIN mentioned on the title identical to the one on the vehicle?
- Is the title invalid due to mark-throughs, erasures, or correction tape? If you have an official copy of an amended title, you must provide it.
- Is the mileage information correct?
- Is the data legible?
Step 3: Create a bill of sale.
Although it is not required, the majority of people create a bill of sale when completing a substantial transaction. This document acts as a record of the transaction and, in some instances, may provide legal protection and serve as proof of ownership. It takes little time to create a bill of sale, and there are numerous free templates available online.
Step 4: Make the seller submit an Odometer Disclosure Statement.
Due to the Federal Truth in Mileage Act, all states require sellers to document vehicle mileage when selling a vehicle. While the majority of states accept the completed title or bill of sale as proof of mileage, Illinois demands completely different paperwork.
The seller must provide the buyer with a written mileage statement, occasionally referred to as a seller’s report, prior to the transaction taking place. According to Illinois law, this document must include the following:
- Both parties’ names, addresses, and signatures
- Exact mileage
- Car color, make, model, and year
- Car identification number
Step 5: Submit an Application for Vehicle Transaction (Form VSD 190).
For almost all motor vehicle services, the Secretary of State’s office needs drivers to complete an Application for a Vehicle Transaction form. You’ll bubble in the service you require in part labeled “Type of transaction.”
By utilizing a single form rather than five, the SOS streamlines these processes, allowing drivers to complete all required paperwork in one sitting. Simply put, it’s a more convenient way to handle an Illinois title transfer. Additionally, the cost of this form is determined by the service(s) requested.
Step 6: Fill out a form for Private Party Vehicle Tax Transaction.
Tax Form RUT-50 should be filed and the 6.25% state sales tax should be paid to the county tax collector with any private car sale. Additional county taxes and title transfer fees are not included in this rate. The entire amount of tax collected is dependent on the model year and purchase price of the vehicle. Automobiles worth more than $15,000 are taxed differently than those worth less than $15,000.
Bear in mind that the tax rate is determined by the vehicle’s “reasonable value.” Simply put, even if you purchase a car for significantly less than its market value, you will still be taxed at the market value rate. This document is used to calculate the vehicle’s tax liability based on the purchase price or fair market value as assessed by a licensed dealer.
Step 7: Pay the Illinois title transfer fees and any other applicable charges.
Transferring a car in Illinois is too expensive. The overall cost of a standard vehicle transfer is just over $300 and maybe higher if additional paperwork is required. The vehicle title is $150; the SOS will add another $151 for registration and tag.
If you need to update your name in the SOS database, an extra $15 will be charged. Transferring vehicles from a deceased joint owner to the single living owner will be assessed a $15 application cost, a $50 title fee, and a $3 registration fee.
Step 8: Apply for a plate transfer or a new license plate.
Transferring your license plate is simple. Just accomplish the same Application for Vehicle Transaction as transferring your title and select the “Title and transfer” box. The cost of transferring your plates is $25, which will be added to the cost of registration if you do so all at once.
To apply for a new license plate, complete the Application for Vehicle Transaction form and check the “Title and plates” or “Plates alone” option. A new plate costs $29, including tax.
Step 9: Wait for your title to arrive.
By mail, it usually takes about six weeks to receive your new title. If it has been more than six weeks since you last saw your pink slip, call your local SOS office to inquire about locating your title or acquiring a copy.
(Related: How to Get a Tanker Endorsement)
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About The Author
Krizzia Paolyn holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. She is a professional writer for various digital magazines and renowned publications. It has always been her passion to share her voice, and at the same time, to encourage others to share their voices as well.