Try as you might to stay well organized and on top of everything, sometimes things still go missing. If that missing item happens to be your car title, there is no need to stress. Instead you can obtain a duplicate car title and put the worry behind you. Your car title is what states you are the registered owner of the vehicle, and gives you the right to transfer ownership and/or sell the vehicle.

In the state of Pennsylvania duplicate car titles are granted for people who have had theirs stolen, lost, damaged, or it is just illegible. The title will be issued through the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), with a process that is relatively quick and easy. Here are the steps involved.

  • Begin by downloading, printing, and filling out the Application for Duplicate Certificate of Title by Owner (Form MV-38 O). You will also need information about any lien on the vehicle, your driver's license number, the VIN, and the title number.

  • Be sure to also report a stolen car title to your local law enforcement agency, as a copy of the report will be needed with your application.

  • The cost for a duplicate title is $51, and can be paid as a money order or check payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

  • Submit the fee and completed form to the following address:

    PA Department of
    Transportation
    Bureau of Motor Vehicles
    1101 South Front St
    Harrisburg, PA 17104

  • Keep in mind if there is a lien on your vehicle, the duplicate will be issued to the lienholder only.

You can find more information about replacing a lost or stolen car title in Pennsylvania by visiting the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles site.

This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How to Replace a Lost or Stolen Car Title in Pennsylvania and was authored by Valerie Johnston.


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