My mother passed away in April of 2014. According to her, before she dies, she owed less than $1300 on her vehicle, which is worth about $4500. After contacting the finance company several times and providing them with the death certificate, they still have not picked up the car. I don't have the title, just the death certificate, showing that I was her son. I am moving soon and I need it gone. Can I sell the vehicle or donate it? I live in California.
Contact the DMV. If her estate was valued at less than $150,000 and you are the sole heir, you should be able to transfer title into your name. If you can't locate the title you'll have to apply for a duplicate title.
I am not your attorney. Avvo and its users acknowledge that no attorney-client relationship is established by using avvo.com. Nothing published in this website constitutes actual legal advice. You should consult with an attorney of your choice who has experience in your inquired field of law. If you are in California and have questions about estate planning, I'd be happy to receive your call.
You don't have legal authority to do either of the two things you suggested. Nevertheless, counsel has suggested you contact the DMV and there is a possibiilty you can get the title without too much hassle.
Legal disclaimer: This answer does not constitute legal advice. I am admitted to practice law in the State of Missouri only, and make no attempt to opine on matters of law that are not relevant to Missouri. This answer is based on general principles of law that may or may not relate to your specific situation, and is for promotional purposes only. You should never rely on this answer alone and nothing in these communications creates an attorney-client relationship. less
You can go to the dmv or autoclub, if you are a member, with death certificate and will, if she had one, and fill out a form of affidavit which will give you and her other children or whoever is named in the will as beneficiary, title to the vehicle. You can then sell it. If you don’t care about it, then let the finance company know you don’t want it and will return it and ask where you should deliver the car. You can also go to used car dealer who may be able to give you some money and will have the forms necessary for you to transfer title to it.
As the personal representative of your mother's estate you can take title to the vehicle using a small estate affidiavit under Probate Code section 13100 IF the total value of your mother's estate was less than $150,000. Notwithstanding, if there was a loan on the vehicle there is an outstanding lien and you cannot pass clear title to the vehicle without paying off the outstanding balance on the loan.
Our Rating is calculated using information the lawyer has included on their profile in addition to the information we collect from state bar associations and other organizations that license legal professionals. Attorneys who claim their profiles and provide Avvo with more information tend to have a higher rating than those who do not.What determines Avvo Rating?Experience & background
Years licensed, work experience, educationLegal community recognition
Peer endorsements, associations, awardsLegal thought leadership
Publications, speaking engagementsDiscipline