Have you ever been in that sticky situation; wanting to insure your car but having to wait because you’ve misplaced your car title? Well, I certainly have and I had absolutely no idea to do. While the situation was certainly stressful, it was honestly nothing to lose sleep over. In fact, answering the question of where can I find my title number if I lost my registration turned out to be pretty simple.
For those who want to know where and how to find their title numbers, as well as what to do about a lost registration — keep on reading.
What Is a Car Title?
So before we can explain what a title number is, we first have to understand what the car title is. A car title is a legal document that proves the ownership of a car. In addition to ownership info, there are all sorts of valuable information on it that we need to register, insure, and sell our cars.
The car title will contain details about our car’s make, model, and year. Also, we can find the odometer reading and basic information about the car owner, such as name and address, along with the title number.
But, perhaps, the most important part of a car title is the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). It’s a unique 17-character sequence assigned to a car by its manufacturer. Using the VIN, we can figure out what type and model the car is, as well as its country of origin.
What Is a Title Number?
Much like the VIN, a title number is a unique multi-digit (usually seven or eight) character sequence. It’s stamped in the information section of our car title. In some states, a title number is referred to as document or control numbers.
On its own, a title number can’t tell us anything about the car’s owner, or its make and model. But it’s extremely helpful when we need to locate our missing title or get a new one.
We also need the title number if we’re applying for a lien, for example, or want to insure our cars. The insurance companies and lienholders need that information to verify that we’re the rightful owners of our vehicles.
It’s also important to know that, unlike the VIN, a title number isn’t fixed. Once the car changes owners, the new owner will get a different sequence.
Why Is a Title Number Important?
Well, if we have the registration on hand, the title number isn’t that important. As we mentioned, it’s a good thing to have if we need help finding the car title.
However, in most cases, governments use the title numbers to keep track of a car’s ownership and life. But without the actual car title, there’s not much we can do with the number alone.
Where Can I Find My Title Number If I Lost My Registration?
Answering the question of where can I find my title number if I lost my registration lies in checking the car title. Now, I know what everyone must be thinking, ‘how can I look it up there if I don’t know where my registration is?’
Well, nowadays, we don’t need a physical copy of the document, as plenty of DMVs have this information online.
So the first step to getting a hold of the title number would be to contact the local DMV or checking their website. We might access the information there or ask for it to be sent by mail.
Asking the Lienholder
If we buy a car through a lienholder, we’re not the rightful owners until we’ve paid everything off. The car’s true owner is the lienholder, and the car title is theirs. So if going to the DMV doesn’t pan out, we should always contact the lienholder to get the title number.
However, if we’ve paid off the entire lien but still haven’t received the car title, we need to get in touch with the lienholder. Once all of the paperwork clears, the car is ours, and we’ll need the title to register and insure the car.
Looking up the Title Number
Once we have a physical or electronic version of our car title, we can check for the title number. Most often, the seven- or eight-digit number should be in the top left corner, right next to the VIN. However, some states put it at the bottom of the document. Either way, finding it shouldn’t be too difficult as the words Title Number are right next to it.
Getting a New Car Title
Now that we’ve answered the question of where can I find my title number if I lost my registration, it’s time to talk about applying for a new one. Usually, the easiest way to do this is to go to the DMV and fill out the proper paperwork.
We’ll need to bring some form of ID, registration forms, and insurance. Then, once we submit the application, the DMV should send the title within the following 15 to 30 days.
On the other hand, we can also apply by phone, email, or online. The process is pretty similar, and, depending on the state, shouldn’t cost more than $20.
There are plenty of answers to the question of where can I find my title number if I lost my registration, and they’re all pretty straightforward. Possibly the simplest one is getting in touch with the DMV or lienholder to get the information. But if we’ve lost our car title, getting a new one as soon as possible is the key to avoiding a fine.