Vehicle Inherited or Purchased from an Estate

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The Georgia Department of Revenue, Motor Vehicle Division has issued an updated Motor Vehicle Manual. This manual is detailed and addresses the State's requirements for titling and registering vehicles in the State of Georgia.

To view this manual online click "Motor Vehicle Online Manual".

 Note: If a Georgia title has not been issued for the vehicle and the inheritor is not a legal resident of Georgia, the inheritor must obtain a title in their name first from their home state before selling or transferring ownership of the vehicle to a Georgia resident.

Titles and license plates can be obtained at the County Tag Office where the owner resides for a vehicle that has been inherited or purchased from an estate. The following information is required:

  • Application - Completed Form MV-1 Tag and Title Application.
  • Title Document - Original valid title issued in the deceased’s name or properly assigned to the deceased with all recorded liens and/or security interests  released in the spaces provided on the title.
  • If the title is not available, a replacement title cannot be issued in a deceased person's name. The title holder will have to request a duplicate title to assign to the estate.
  • If the title is issued to someone else and titled in another state, the title must be submitted, issued to, or properly assigned to the deceased.
  • Lien Release - Completed and signed Form T-4 Lien or Security Interest Release.
  • Inheritance Document – submit one of the following: 
  • Certified copy of the Letters of Testamentary
  • Certified copy of Year’s Support, or
  • The following: 
  • Completed and signed Form T-20 Affidavit of Inheritance in the inheritor’s full legal name
    - If there is only one heir, a legible copy of No Administration Necessary may be submitted in lieu of Form T-20 Affidavit of Inheritance. - If Form T-20 Affidavit of Inheritance is submitted, the inheritor must title the vehicle in their name first before selling or transferring ownership
  • Certified copy of the deceased’s death certificate.
  • If will is not to be probated, (i.e., will contains only "limited" assets), a legible copy of the non-probated will must be submitted.
  • If the inheritor does not have Letters of Testamentary, they must title the vehicle in their name first before selling or transferring ownership.
  • Transfer Document
  • If vehicle is purchased from an estate, the executor must complete the title assignment transferring ownership using their full legal name.
  • If the vehicle is exempt from odometer disclosure requirements and the title is not available, the executor should complete and sign a Form T-7 Bill of Sale, transferring ownership. 
  • If the title is not available and an odometer disclosure is required, the executor must title the vehicle in their name or in the name of the estate first before transferring ownership.
  • Emissions inspection (not required in Columbia County)
  • Proof of Insurance, by one of the following:
  • Filed by the insurance company directly in the Department’s database.
  • Insurance binder showing insurance liability coverage.
  • Fees - Columbia County accepts local checks, money orders, cash and credit cards. The fees are as follows:
  • $18.00 title application fee when the vehicle requires a title and application is made within 30 days of the date of purchase or ownership transfer;
  • $20.00 license plate/registration decal fee; or $5.00 license plate transfer fee;
  • If a title is not applied for within 30 days of purchase date, a title penalty fee of $10.00;
  • Any penalty fees due for late registration renewal or late application for title.
  • Taxes – Subject to Title Ad Valorem Tax (TAVT), Annual Motor Vehicle Ad Valorem Tax, or Georgia Sales and Use Tax.
  • Exceptions:
  • Executor is Deceased 
  • Submit Temporary Letters of Administration. 
  • Apply for a title in the name of the estate only. 
  • Cannot sell or transfer ownership of the vehicle without Permanent Letters of Administration. Title Issued to a Company Whose Sole Owner is Deceased - Submit a signed letter from the office that issues business licenses stating the deceased (using their name as it appears on the death certificate) was the sole owner of the company.


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