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Vehicles Belonging to Deceased Individuals

The Department of Vehicle and Drivers’ Licensing understand that it can be an emotional journey when dealing with the loss of a loved one, and the stress that accompany those who try to finalize and administer the assets that were left behind.

To assist in expediting the processing of a deceased person’s vehicle, the DVDL asks that these simple steps be followed, which no doubt will alleviate unnecessary time being spent during this procedure:

  1. An Original or Notarized Death Certificate MUST be produced.
  2. An Original or Notarized Marriage Certificate.
  3. Evidence or proof of identity and signature of person seeking the transfer.
  4. When there is NO Will or Letter of Administration, a Notarized Letter or Affidavit   stating that there is no Will or Letter of Administration as well as no claims or interests in the vehicle(s) being transferred.
  5. When there is a WILL with more than one trustee, a letter signed by all stating that there is no objection to the transfer to said person.
  6. The Notary Public MUST be the same person signing on both the Death Certificate and Letter being notarized.

Once complete, these documents MUST be reviewed and approved by Management before any vehicle is transferred. With these requirements satisfied, vehicles that are registered to the deceased may now be transferred.

Should there be a bank lien registered against the vehicle, you must first obtain a “Notice of Lien Removal” from the lending institution before the transfer of ownership can occur.

When a person has died intestate (without a Will), that person’s property rests in their estate, including real and personal property, that is land, cash, vehicles, etc. In order for the vehicle to be transferred under the Traffic Act (2021 Revision) to someone having legal personality (real person, company, corporation, charitable organization, trust company, Strata, etc), the person must produce a sworn Affidavit stating that there is no will of the deceased. They should also state their connection to the deceased, and that there is no other interested party, who will have a claim to the vehicle. In the event that the deceased has a spouse or children, they must also sign the affidavit stating that they have no interest in the vehicle or objection to it being transferred.  

In the event that the vehicle is remaining in the name of the deceased (no change of ownership), we will have to change the record to now say “The Estate of John Doe”. This will allow the administrator to obtain insurance in the same name (In the Estate of John Doe) and have the vehicle renewed. Remember that if there is a lien on the vehicle, the institution should be given a copy of the new log book. 

Please ensure that the Certificate of Insurance or Cover Note bears the name of the deceased person preceded by (In the Estate of). Then a new log book will have to be issued to reflect this change, after paying the prescribed fee. Please advise the party that they have to give a copy of the Log Book to the lending institution that has an interest in the vehicle to reflect the change of legal personality. 

Valid identification is required for all involved with the transfer. Valid insurance is also required for the individual who is taking ownership of the vehicle.

Fundamentals of Export and Termination of the Vehicle

For export or termination of the vehicle, a stringent process must be followed. First of which is the termination of the vehicle’s registration.

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