One of the most common questions that new dirt bike buyers have is: “do dirt bikes come with titles?” The answer is yes, and it’s important to get one for your bike. Read on to know more.
If you love riding a bike on rough terrain, then you should get a dirt bike. You can buy a new dirt bike or a second-hand one. But, try to get a title for your bike. A title for a dirt bike will help you if any problems like theft or fraud occur. Continue reading to find out more about titles for dirt bikes.
Do Dirt Bikes Come With Titles? Are They Mandatory?
Titles for dirt bikes are proof of ownership. While not all dirt bikes have titles, they may be necessary if you want to sell an old bike. The title states that you are the legal owner of the dirt bike.
The Secretary of the State gives titles for all vehicles purchased in the state. If you require a title for your dirt bike, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will issue it.
However, several laws surround the availability of titles. These laws change depending upon the state. For example, a state may require a notary to be present when you complete the title paperwork.
Apart from the regulations, the details stated on the title of your dirt bike may also be different in different states. Usually, the title for a dirt bike will have the following information.
- Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
- Make and model of the dirt bike
- License plate number
- The year the dirt bike was manufactured
- The owner’s name and address
- Taxation information
- Title number
If you have borrowed money to buy your dirt bike, you will have to state that at the time of filing for a title. The title will also have the person’s name to whom you owe money for the dirt bike on the title.
Why Do Dirt Bikes Come With Titles?
Now you might be wondering if you need a title for your dirt bike. While it is not necessary, it can be of some help.
Titles help you prove that you are the owner and have not stolen the bike. So if someone claims that you stole their dirt bike, you can show the title as proof.
It will also come into use if someone steals your dirt bike and you need to file a police report. Check the laws in your state to make sure if you need a title or can go without one.
Should You Get a Title for a Second Hand Dirt Bike?
If you buy an old dirt bike, you might not get a title. The previous owner is likely to have lost the original title or didn’t have one in the first place.
However, this might also be a scam. In recent years, the sale of stolen bikes has increased. So it is better to insist on getting a title at the time of purchase. If the dirt bike is stolen and reported missing by the owner, the police will confiscate it.
Then you will lose both the bike and all the money spent on it. If you cannot prove that you bought the bike, you can face jail time as well. To avoid such issues, you must get a title for your dirt bike.
How To Ensure A Safe Purchase If There is No Title?
Verify the VIN
If there is no title, immediately ask for the VIN. Once you get the VIN, run it to check if the dirt bike is registered as stolen or salvaged.
Do not buy the bike if the owner is not willing to disclose the VIN. No matter how low the price is, you need to verify the VIN before confirming payment, and if you can’t get the VIN, refuse to buy the bike.
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Check About Any Liens
A lien on a dirt bike means that the owner financed it and is still paying for it. Use the VIN to find out how much money the previous owner still owes. If you buy the dirt bike before the payments are complete, you will have to pay the remaining amount.
Avoid purchasing the dirt bike if you find out about any liens. You do not need to take on any additional payment and should look for a different bike.
If the VIN checks out and there are no liens, try looking for a dirt bike with a title. The title is the ultimate legal proof, and it will save you a lot of trouble.
How Do I Get a New Title for My Dirt Bike?
While old dirt bikes may not have titles, you can get a new title. If you buy directly from a store, you are more likely to get a title. So if you want a new title, here are a few things that you can do.
Contact the Last Known Owner
The easiest way to get a title is, of course, by contacting the previous owner of the dirt bike. Ask the owner to give you the title for the bike along with the VIN.
If only the VIN is available, you can run it to find out if the dirt bike had a title at any point in time. If you get both the VIN and the title, match the VIN with the title number to ensure that the bike is not stolen.
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Check the Bill of Sale
The bill of sale for your dirt bike will have most of the information that you need. Read it carefully to understand if the bike has a title and if there are any liens. The bill of sale may also include the cost of repairs.
The bill will also help you get the name of the owner. You can then find out if the owner has an insurance policy for the dirt bike and whether the insurance covers issues like theft. If you do not know the insurance company, ask the seller to provide a policy number.
Visit a Title Company
If you have a bill of sale for your dirt bike, you can go to a title company with it. The title company will examine the bike and conduct a thorough inspection.
The company will then give you a new title for the dirt bike. If a title for the dirt bike already exists, the title company will also be able to provide the previous owner’s name.
Find Out if You Need a Notary
Many states require a notary to be present when issuing the title for a vehicle. Before you file for a title, find out more about your state’s laws.
The states where you will need a notary are Arizona, North Carolina, Kentucky, Ohio, Wyoming, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. If you are in any of these states, follow the necessary procedures to get a new title for your dirt bike.
Buy the Dirt Bike From a Registered Seller
A safe way to ensure a title is to buy the dirt bike from an authorized seller. If you buy a new dirt bike, you are the first owner, and you can easily file the paperwork for a title.
Go to the DMV and ask for a new title to be issued for your dirt bike. If you can show proper proof of the sale, you will get a title without any problems.
New titles are essential for dirt bikes, particularly when you are not the first owner. If a previous owner can give you a title, do not immediately take it to be an authentic one. The title can be fake.
Go to the title company and ask them to verify the identification. Sometimes, the government may suspend a title. If the title is fake, the company will not find out further details as it will not be present in any database.
When this happens, ask for a new title. Sometimes the title company and the DMV cannot give a new title. The previous owner may have a title, or the bike may be stolen property.
You should then contact the police and let them know the details. They will be able to track down the owner and clear all confusion.
Do Dirt Bikes Have VINs?
A Vehicle Identification Number or VIN is essential for every vehicle, including a dirt bike. It is 17 digits long, and as the name suggests, the VIN helps correctly identify the bike, especially if someone has stolen it.
The VIN depends on the make and model of the dirt bike. It might also depend on the age of the bike or the year of manufacture and the manufacturer. The VIN is unique to your dirt bike.
Where Can I Find The VIN on My Bike?
Now, you need to know the location of the VIN. The VIN on a dirt bike is usually near or on the steering component. It will be close to the underbelly of the dirt bike, on the right side.
Some dirt bikes have the VIN around the cylinders, near the motor. It is essential to know where the VIN is so that you can quickly check it when required.
Maintain your bike well so that the VIN is visible at all times. It might seem impossible to keep the dirt bike clean all the time, but wipe it down after a ride or at least clean the area that has the VIN.
Check every part if you are buying an old dirt bike and don’t know where the VIN is. Make sure that the bike is spotless. Then start inspecting it from the neck of the dirt bike. Move towards the steering head and then check both sides.
If you still haven’t found the VIN, check the underbelly and near the engine. You should see the VIN on any of these parts. Do not buy the bike if the VIN is not visible or only partly visible. The bike might be stolen or salvaged, so look for a better one.
Do Pit Bikes Have Titles?
Pit bikes are smaller than dirt bikes and have less power but are still suitable for riding dirt. Racing staff in the pit often use these bikes to help racers.
You can make a pit bike street legal, but it will involve several steps as pit bikes usually do not come with license plates. Pit bikes can have titles, but it is difficult to get one because of registration issues.
Many states consider bikes of a particular CC size to be mopeds and refuse registration. A pit bike is not a moped since you can use it to do stunts. But if your state decides that it is and does not allow registration, you won’t be able to get a title.
How Can I Get a Title For My Pit Bike?
To get a title for your pit bike, you will first have to get it checked. After the inspection is complete, you need to take the bill of sale to the DMV.
The authorities will require you to provide proof of residency and recent tax receipts and fill out the registration form and other paperwork. If you have installed any new parts that are road-legal, you will need to provide pictures.
The DMV authorities may also spend some time trying to determine why your pit bike is not a moped. Once that is over, you might have to wait a long time for your paperwork to be filed and then be accepted.
If you are visiting your local DMV, they will probably not process the paperwork and issue the title in-house. So, you will either have to wait until the title paperwork arrives via post or drive to the state capital and get it.
What Are The Rules For Getting a Title For A Pit Bike?
The rules for getting a title for a pit bike may differ from state to state. For example, Minnesota requires bike owners to visit the Department of Natural Resources and fill out some paperwork before going to the DMV.
Do your research before you start the process so that you can save time. If your pit bike has an off-road title, MSO or even a bill of sale, you can get it registered as a street-legal bike.
Yes, Dirt Bikes Come With Titles. Get One Before Purchasing a New Dirt Bike
You’ve reached the end of this article, and now you know why a title for your dirt bike is essential. Follow the proper steps to ensure legal ownership of your bike, and don’t forget to share this with others interested in buying dirt bikes.