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Automobile Titles and Military Life

A few months ago, we made our last car payment on one of the vehicles we own. Yay! My husband and I have recently changed our state residency and it's time to apply for license plates in our new home state. When I realized that our lender had not mailed the car title with the lien release to us, I naturally assumed that it had been returned to them because we have lived in four separate houses in the five years since we purchased the car. Because our payments were automatically debited from our checking account from the time we bought the car, I never bothered to update our many addresses with the lender over the years. Not a smart move....

But one quick phone call should clear this up, right?

Wrong.

Back in the old days, when you paid an automobile off, the lender mailed you a hard copy of the title with the lien release. Apparently that's no longer the procedure in the digital age. The lender now sends an electronic version of the title/release to the state in which the automobile was originally titled and you have to request the title from the state. It's not automatic. But who am I kidding, even if it were - they would have had a heck of a time trying to track us down!

Yesterday, I spent over an hour on the phone with the lender, the state in which the car was registered, the state in which the car was titled and the state which will issue new plates.

It's just a hoot having a car purchased in one state, registered in another and titled in yet another. I mean, who doesn't wake up every morning and hope they can speak with three different DMV offices that day?

Aye Yai Yai!

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