Selling a Motorcycle with a Lien
When a motorcycle title has a lien on it, it means that a third party (lienholder) has a secured financial interest in that specific motorcycle. The lienholder's information is always disclosed on the paper or electronic vehicle title.
The most common title lien is from the lending institution that financed the purchase of the motorcycle. The lien remains on the title until the motorcycle is paid off. The owner also doesn't receive a physical copy of the title until the debt is paid off. Another common lien scenario is when the motorcycle is used as collateral to secure a loan that has not been paid back.
The biggest disadvantage of having a lien on the title is that it can't be transferred to the new owner (buyer) until the lien has been paid off and the lienholder releases the lien.
What You Should Do if Your Title Has a Lien
Contact the lienholder to find out what is required to remove the lien.
- The lienholder will tell you the amount owed and how it must be paid.
- They will also tell you if the payment must be made by you or the new owner (the buyer) of the motorcycle.
- Disclose to interested buyers that your motorcycle title has a lien.
Pay off the lien amount according to the lienholder's requirements.
- Be as transparent as possible.
- Provide the lienholder's information to the interested buyer who wants to buy the motorcycle.
- Sell the motorcycle.
In many states, you can do a lien search to find out if a vehicle title has a lien on it. For example, in the state of Florida, you can do a title lien search on the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle website. Similar websites may be available in your state.
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