Title Liens

A lien is usually placed on a vehicle when you first purchase it unless you pay the full cost with your own funds. A lien may also be placed on a vehicle if you refinance it. Your lien will be recorded on your title.

Once you title your vehicle in Vermont, DMV forwards your title with the lien recorded to your lender (lien holder). You will receive the registration card and license plates if you have also registered the vehicle.

Releasing the Lien

When you pay off your vehicle loan, the lender must send you the title showing your lien as satisfied. When you receive the title, you can either:

  • Exchange it for a clear title and pay the fee for a new title, or
  • Keep the title that displays the lien as satisfied.

Transferring a Vehicle with a Lien

If there is an existing lien on your vehicle and you are transferring the vehicle to another individual, you must contact the lien holder. The lien holder must agree to this transfer and provide you with the Vermont title. If the buyer is assuming the unpaid balance of the loan and was not on the original contract, the lien holder should satisfy the existing lien and record a new lien for the buyer.

Undisclosed Lien

The vehicle has entered the titling jurisdiction from a jurisdiction that does not disclose lien-holder information on the title.  The titling jurisdiction may issue a new title without this brand if no notice of a security interest in the vehicle is recieved, within a jurisdiction defined time frame.


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Related Forms & Information


VIN verifications are currently waived except for salvage vehicles, foreign titles, or vehicles requiring temporary registration.

The title to be changed must contain owner information that matches the owner information on the current vehicle registration. You must complete a registration application form (form #VD-119) providing an updated vehicle odometer reading and updated owner information. Each individual currently listed on the title must sign on the back of the title (as "sellers") and fill in the name of the "buyer(s)". If there are two owners you must indicate the relationship of the two owners.

See types of vehicle ownership for more information.

If the vehicle is more than 15 years old you may use the "bill of sale."

If the vehicle is 15 years old or less, you must obtain a replacement title.


Contact Us

Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles
120 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05603-0001

Monday-Friday: 7:45am-4:30pm
email telephone

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