To apply for a title for a vehicle currently titled in Georgia, the following documents and fees must be submitted to the Columbia County Motor Vehicle Office.
Tag/Title Application, Form MV-1 – The application must be completed in detail – typed, electronically completed, or legibly hand-printed in blue or black ink in the current owner(s)’ full legal name(s) reflecting their current address. The owner(s) or an authorized representative of the owner(s) must sign the title application. The authorized document (Power of Attorney) must be submitted if the application is signed by a representative. The full, legal name(s) of the owner(s), Georgia identification card number(s) or driver’s license number(s) and the name(s) of the issuing state/country are required for the first certificate of title.
If the vehicle was sold by a licensed Georgia dealer, the dealer must enter his/her signature and the dealership’s current motor vehicle assigned Customer ID number in the spaces provided on the title assignment. The 12-digit motor vehicle assigned Georgia Dealer Customer ID is required on the application if it is not shown in the title assignment.
Transfer Document – The current, original Georgia title properly assigned to the new vehicle owner(s) using his/her full legal name(s) must be submitted showing their current Georgia address. All vehicle owners, other than licensed dealers, must obtain titles in their names before transferring vehicle ownership to another person, dealer or business.
Completing the Title Assignment
When the owner(s) are transferring the ownership of their vehicle, the owner(s) on the face of the title must complete the first assignment on the back of the title to the purchaser(s). This requires the entry of the purchaser(s)’ full legal name(s), current address, date of purchase and the odometer reading, when required (vehicle is less than ten (10) years old.)
The seller must print his/her name and sign his/her name in the assignment. If the vehicle is jointly owned, each owner must print his/her own personal name and sign. The printed name(s) and signature(s) should agree with the name(s) as they appear on the face of the title. If the vehicle is currently titled in a company name, the printed name of the company is required in addition to the printed name and signature of the company’s authorized agent.
For vehicles requiring an odometer reading declaration, the purchaser(s) must acknowledge the odometer declaration made by the seller(s) by printing and signing his/her name in the assignment.
If the vehicle is jointly purchased, each purchaser must print and sign his/her name to acknowledge the odometer declaration. If the vehicle is purchased by a company and the vehicle is subject to the odometer declaration requirements, the printed name of the company is required in addition to the printed name and signature of the company’s authorized agent.
A licensed dealer is the only entity allowed to transfer ownership utilizing the assignments or secure dealer reassignment supplement forms without first having to obtain a title in the licensed dealer’s name.
In order to perfect a lien or security interest in a vehicle, the lien or security interest holder’s name and address must be recorded on the application in the space provided.
It is acceptable for a dealership to use a secure dealer reassignment supplement form when there are still title assignments available. Subsequent dealers may then go back to the title and use the available assignments.
Stamped signatures are acceptable for agents or representatives signing for a business.
Security Interest/Lien Releases and Recordings – All liens or security interests printed on the face of a title must be released before vehicle ownership is transferred. All liens or security interests recorded on the back of a title in a title assignment or on a secure dealer reassignment supplement form must be released even if recorded in error. If a lien or security interest has not been satisfied, the lien or security interest’s holders name and address must be printed on the title application in the spaces provided.
Fees – Pay all fees and taxes due with a check or money order payable to the Columbia County Tax Commissioner. The Columbia County Motor Vehicle Office also accepts cash and credit cards (VISA, MasterCard & Discover). The title fee is $18 if the title application is submitted within thirty (30) days of the purchase date. If a title is not applied for within thirty (30) days of the purchase date, a title penalty fee of $10 must be included in your payment.
Title Ad Valorem Tax – Effective March 1, 2013, any motor vehicle for which a title is issued shall be exempt from sales and use taxes and shall not be subject to the annual ad valorem tax. Any such motor vehicle shall be subject to a Title Ad Valorem Tax (TAVT) based upon the fair market value of the vehicle. The title ad valorem tax shall be paid to the Columbia County Tax Commissioner at the time of titling and registration.
An owner who purchases a vehicle from an individual has thirty (30) days from the date the vehicle was purchased to apply for a title to avoid being charged a 10% TAVT penalty fee, with an additional 1% penalty every thirty (30) days thereafter.
For vehicles sold by a dealer, a penalty of 5% of the TAVT liability will be assessed for any application that is not submitted to the Motor Vehicle Office within thirty (30) days from the date of purchase. An additional 5% is assessed every subsequent month that the application for title and/or TAVT is late.
Note: If an owner moves to Georgia with an out-of-state title already in their name (on the face of the title), 50% of the TAVT is due at the time of title application. The remaining 50% is due to the Tax Commissioner’s Office within twelve (12) months.
Georgia Sales and Use Tax (if applicable) – When applying for a title and license plate for a vehicle that is exempt from Title Ad Valorem Tax and was purchased from an out-of-state dealer or business, Georgia sales and use tax must be paid at the time of application; proof submitted that the sales and use tax has already been paid or proof submitted that the applicant is exempt from this tax. A Georgia title and license plate will not be issued until any Georgia sales and use tax due is paid.
In Columbia County, sales and use tax due may be paid to the Georgia Department of Revenue Office (DOR) located at 610 Ronald Reagan Drive, Evans, GA 30809. You may contact the DOR office at (706) 650-6300 with any questions.