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What To Do If Late To Transfer Title on a Gifted Vehicle
My girlfriend and I were given a car in May as a gift. The registration expired in July. Due to financial difficulties we were unable to complete the title transfer in the allotted amount of time. This is a first for both of us and we are really confused as to how to handle the situation now.
On a side note regarding registration renewal fees owed during a title transfer, the California Department of Motor Vehicles will not apply registration renewal late fees if a transferee acquires a vehicle, the registration subsequently expires, and the transferee pays the renewal fees within 20 days from the transfer date. Unfortunately however, it appears in this specific case you may not be eligible for this penalty exemption due to it having passed the 20 day grace period. None the less, you are still allowed to transfer the vehicle's title over to you and complete the change of ownership. Just keep in mind, the longer you wait, the greater the penalties will be. With that said, and for our readers, if you purchase a vehicle with expired tags, please know that the DMV will give you a 20 day grace period to transfer title and pay registration renewal fees without penalty. The grace period does not apply to the vehicle's previous owner; only to you, the buyer.