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From the Forum – Out-of-state Private Used Car Purchase

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Photo by PoPville flickr user Casey Labrack

Out-of-state Private Used Car Purchase

“I’m purchasing a car from a friend who doesn’t live in DC (or Virginia or Maryland, for that matter). I generally understand the process of getting it registered in DC — get it insured, bring proof of insurance and the title and so forth to the DMV, prepare to pay excise taxes, etc.

My question is how to legally get the car to DC. I plan to pick it up from her, and in her state, she is technically supposed to hang onto the plates when she sells the car. My understanding is that DC won’t give me temp plates until I bring in the signed title. Should I get the title signed and bring it in to get temps to put on the car when I go to pick it up? Or should I just keep her plates on it and mail them back to her once I can get the car back to DC? I’m wondering if anyone in POPville has experience doing this sort of thing and can advise.

Separately, I’m also curious if anyone has kept their excise taxes low by bringing in a bill of sale that reflects the actual purchase price — since I’m getting this for a bit cheaper than what is likely provided in their database.”

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