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I was gifted a car, there seems to be something missing with the titles  ?

I was recently gifted a 98 Ford Explorer from a town local Tony. he gave me what was there of the previous title and bill of sales. Mind you that he was not anywhere on the title or bill of sales. Tony stated that the car was gifted to him because a couple from out of the country had a car, and asked if he wanted it because they were going back to their original country. 

So now I am in possession of the previous title and bill of sales. The title owner says “Michelle” and was issued to her in 2017. The registration says “expiring December 2017” 

 There is an attached bill of sale stating that Michelle had sold her car to a Hyundai dealership in July of 2019. 

On the back of the title under the section “Title Reassignments by Licensed California Dealers” it shows that the Hyundai dealership had sold the car at an auction to a buyer stated “Racing Auto Motors” in August 2019 a month later.

 there is a signature of buyer/agent as well but it is completely unreadable. 

The cars registration ended 3-4 months after that, in December 2019. It has not been renewed since and I’m assuming the last person to have payed registration was Michelle before selling the car to Hyundai in July 2019 and “Racing Auto Motors” has let it expire.

I looked up Racing Auto Motors to call and can not find it anywhere, as if maybe it does not exist? 

if somebody could please help explain.. I am trying to register the car but cannot seem to figure out how I can 

6 Answers

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  • g
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    The guy you gave your hard earned cash to, monica, was not the legally recognized owner.  They were guilty of "jumping title" and you fell for it.  

    Unless you can get whoever this person was to have the title first transferred into their name and then sign over title to you you have nothing more than a two-ton lawn ornament.  

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  • 1 month ago

    You may have the car, but you don't own it. Park it on the street and leave it there. If you park it on your property or you are caught driving it, then you may be arrested for stealing it, because it's not yours, and it's also not owned by the person from whom you got it. Racing Auto Motors owns it, and no one else can "gift" or sell it.

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    The ONLY people who can answer this work for California DMV.  They can access State records.

    You do not have a clean title.

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  • Bort
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    This sounds very fishy. There is a possibility it's "hot" (stolen) and the person that 'gifted' it to you either knows or had the thought that it might be, too, and wanted to get rid of it, get it off their property so if/when it's found they're out of the picture and can claim they don't and didn't have any involvement.

    Since "Tony" didn't legally own it he also can't legally sell or do anything with it including give it to someone else.

    You do have the option of calling police and having them trace it's ownership however doing that, if it is stolen or has had something funky like that go on with it's ownership, you're now involved and could be an accessory or conspirator and charged with a crime. Maybe receiving stolen property or something.

    Me? I wouldn't take that chance. I would take this thing back to this Tony dude and tell him I won't want it and not let him argue or persuade me either way. "I don't want this thing. Period. There's no changing my mind."

    I would do what I could to wipe my finger and palm prints off of it the best I can, get out of there, and never go back.

    That's just too fishy in my opinion. Tony never owned it so he isn't legally able to gift it to anyone. As per the title info you do have that you shared the current owner is Racing Auto Motors.

    Maybe they went out of business. If that's the case whoever owned that business name still owns that vehicle....according to the paperwork.

    Was or is Racing Auto Motors a business name Tony owned? That's a possability. In that case he did own it therefore he can sign the title to transfer it to you.

    Me personally I would just get out of this whole situation and wipe any involvement with "Tony" and this vehicle clear of me having anything to do with it.

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  • Poppy
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Titles show ownership, until the vehicle is titled legally you don’t own it. You may be able to purchase a bonded title. The bond will last 2 years and if uncontested will revert to regular. Like previously stated title skipping is illegal.

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  • May
    Lv 5
    1 month ago

    You are involved in an illegal "jumped title" scheme.  Run, do not walk away from this.

    You were not "gifted" a car.  You were "given" a car.  The car you were "given" was a "gift".

    Made up fancy words are used to impress others.  It is wise to make sure that you are not impressing others negatively.

    Grammar matters

    • monica1 month agoReport

      Are you bored with your life ?

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