Transferring Ownership of Used Cars in the Philippines

Transferring Ownership of Used Cars in the Philippines

Updated on April 19 2024

Planning on getting a used car and wondering about the papers? Read our simplified guide on how to transfer ownership. The main question this guide seeks to answer is how do I change ownership in LTO and we'll give you the steps and requirements.

How do I change ownership of my car? How do I transfer my second-hand car? These follow the same process of transfer ownership in the Philippines.

How do I change ownership of my car in the Philippines?

Step 1 - Prepare All Official Documents

To transfer ownership, you must have the following:

  1. Release of Chattel Mortgage (if applicable, and if the unit is encumbered)
  2. Promissory Notes
  3. Original LTO Receipt (also known as the “O.R.”) and Certificate of Registration (C.R.)
  4. Deed of Absolute Sale
  5. PNP Highway Patrol Group (PNP-HPG) Clearance
  6. Certificate of Emission Compliance for Passed Testing
  7. Third-Party Liability (TPL) Insurance Certificate of Cover (COC) in the name of the new owner – your name.

Photocopy these documents for the next step. Note: If you buy the car from a bank, getting the documents takes about a month.

Step 2 - Go to Registry of Deeds

Go to the nearest Registry of Deeds for the cancellation of the chattel of mortgage. (i.e. Cancelling chattel of mortgage = proof that the car isn't mortgaged anymore.) Prepare photocopies of the aforementioned documents.

Submit the necessary requirements and pay a processing fee. (For us, it’s P800 but it varies.)

You will be issued a receipt which you will present to LTO later on.

Note: this might take a day to process.

Step 3 - Go to LTO of Original Registration If Possible

Proceed to the LTO branch where the vehicle was registered, this is where you will be getting a new certificate of registration under your name. If the branch the car is registered in is far away, any branch is fine but you're going to have do an extra step later on.

Prepare the following documents:

  1. Cancellation of Chattel Mortgage properly stamped by the registry of deeds.
  2. Original LTO certificate of registration.

Pay the necessary fees for removing your encumbrance to the LTO.

What is encumbrance? - Basically, it’s a status that says the vehicle is a loan. Removing the encumbrance = the car isn’t a loaned car anymore.

Once the payment is done, you will receive a new original LTO certificate of registration without the “encumbered” label. After this, you may proceed to transfer your vehicle under your name.

Step 4 - Proceed to the Records Section of the LTO where You Want to Register the Car

Proceed to the records section of LTO with photocopies of your new O.R. and C.R. It is time for approval and getting a circular.

They will confirm the region where your car was registered.

After the confirmation, proceed to the approval section of LTO for the approval of documents.

Afterwards, go back to the records section of LTO for the circular which you will need later on.

After you’re done, bring the documents to the approving section.

All of this will take some time, wait for them to be released in the records section.

Congratulations! If you went to the branch where the car was registered, the necessary documents are now where they need to be and the car is now in your name!

But for those who didn't, there's an extra step:

Step 5 - Finalize the Transfer of Title

Once all your documents have been processed by the LTO branch where you went, you will need to send the following documents to the specific regional LTO branch where the car was registered.

  1. Original Confirmation
  2. Photocopy of Deed of Sale
  3. Photocopies of the Original Receipt and Certificate of Registration (or the OR/CR)

After this, you’re going to have to wait for the documents to be mailed back. This might take about 2 weeks to a month.

We know, the process takes a while. But is spending a bit of effort for a used car you got a phenomenal deal on that bad? Not really.

See Resource: Deed of Absolute Sale for Transfer of Ownership

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