I'm trying to buy a 69 Camaro from a guy I've known a long time who bought the car in 1977 and NEVER transferred the title.
He planned to only race the car, so he didn't care about plates or any of that. He raced it on and off until 1986, and the car hasn't moved an inch since then. The prior owner was killed in a traffic accident, so the current owner has a title and a death certificate. He checked into what he needs to do, and a notary at a bank said to bring the surviving spouse in to sign (the title I presume) in front of her and she will then notarize it. He tracked down the dead guys wife (who luckily is still alive and in the area) but she's apparently not wanting to cooperate. I don't necessarily blame her; after all of these years and maybe old memories of the car and husband, I might not want to either.
I've looked at the title and I don't think there is anything written on it about the sale. I think the wife signed it for the dead owner, and provided the death certificate with it.
I'm not sure if I should let this drag on week after week like it is, or just buy the car, get the title and death certificate myself, and try to resolve it on my own like the current owner never even had the car.
I need to look at the title again and see if she only signed it, or signed and dated it. If it's not dated I could treat it like I'm buying it from her. Maybe give her a couple hundred bucks for her trouble?
If it's dated as sold in 1977, then there is the issue of why somebody didn't transfer the title at the time of sale.
It used to be easy to handle this stuff; I have purchased both a car with no title and an old motorcycle that had never been titled and easily got those taken care of, but this seems different, AND I think the laws have tightened up quite a bit in recent years.
Anyone had any similar situations? Any ideas?
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