What to do if we want to sell a vehicle privately and the current registration and title have my husband’s ex-wife on both?

UPDATED: Oct 15, 2012

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What to do if we want to sell a vehicle privately and the current registration and title have my husband’s ex-wife on both?

They have been divorced for over 12 years. We do not have a current address or phone number for her and do not know where she is. How do we go about releasing the vehicle without having consent from her?

Asked on October 15, 2012 under Family Law, Pennsylvania


MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You will need to talk with your state department of motor vehicles. If the vehicle was awarded to your husband in the prior divorce, you should probably bring that divorce decree with you to meet with the DMV. You may need to obtain a lost title application (some states believe this is the only way to get clear title) but if you have no way of knowing where she is, see if the law in your state allows for an affidavit by legal counsel on true ownership. Again, meet with the Department of Motor Vehicles first; ask for a manager or senior supervisor, not the clerk.

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