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Car title trouble, anyone can help?

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OK, I am completely lost on where to start.

My friend bought a car and stupidly only got a bill of sale and not a signed over title. This happened in California. She, while under the initial temporary registration, drove the car to Washington when she moved and attempted to get it registered and titled in Washington and, of course, couldn't.

She eventually found out that the person on the bill of sale is not the titled owner (I guess they only had a bill of sale also). So now! She got a different car and decided it isn't worth the hassle. Me, recently being without a car would be willing to do the work to get it registered in my name but am told I need to get in touch with the last titled owner. Anyone know how to get this information?

I hope I explained this OK enough. Should I proceed with abandon vehicle stuff? I'm just completely lost.

The vehicle is a 1986 Acura Legend which still runs very very well, if the age makes a difference.

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I found this at the unofficial dmv.org website... The point being that there is a law saying you cannot be given that info. I would start with the DMV in Ca and see if they can/ will help you. I doubt it. I know when a car is traded in, you can fill out a form that allows them to take it without title on it. Since that is not what your looking for, I would just drive it and not deal with it like she did. You could of course call the people who gave her the bill of sale, and ask them who they bought it from and track the bread crumbs that way.

Good luck either way.

Title Check

The vehicle's title, often nostalgically referred to as a "pink slip," shows vehicle ownership. Although the U.S. Driver's Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) doesn't allow the names of previous owners to be revealed, a title check tells you how many owners the car had, and crucial information about abandonment, damage, and any rebuilds the vehicle has undergone. A title check reveals whether the vehicle you're considering has ever suffered fire or hail damage, as well as if it has been deemed salvaged, considered a total loss by an insurance company, or been rebuilt. You can also find out if the vehicle has ever been registered and titled in an area prone to storms or other severe weather conditions that cause property damage.

When you know this information about a vehicle, it can help protect you from problems with it in the future. A salvaged or rebuilt vehicle might never give you a headache, but at least you will have the choice of knowing about it before you buy the vehicle. Purchasing a vehicle with that kind of history is your decision; yet you should at least have the option to make informed decision. A title check gives you that option.

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I found some information on the WA Department of License web site. I am not sure if it will apply to your situation. I'd call them to see how they handle a situation like yours. I can't imagine your friend is the first person that has bought a car w/o a title and then wanted to sell it.

I'd also check the VIN number of the car to see if it is listed as a stolen vehicle. You never know if the people she bought the car from really were the owners.

Good luck to you.

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