can't get trailer title transferred

Discussion in 'Trailering' started by boatman37, Mar 29, 2017.

  1. boatman37

    boatman37 Member

    734
    Jun 6, 2015
    pittsburgh
    1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer
    5.7 Merc
    bought my boat and trailer 2 years ago from a guy in Ohio (i'm in PA). Ohio doesn't issue titles for trailer so i have a bill of sale along with the origin or manufacture and the PO's registration. went to the local notary 2 years ago and transferred the boat but he said i didn't have the correct paperwork for the trailer. forgot about it until a few months ago and went to a different notary and they said i had everything but the bill of sale wasn't notarized so i needed the PO to go with me to get it notarized and to bring the trailer. PO was in FL for the winter but called him the other day and called the notary again today and confirmed they needed to see the trailer. they told me they needed to see the VIN tag and i told them there was no tag on the trailer so they told me they couldn't transfer it. called PA DOT and they told me i needed to fill out form MV41 and get a police officer to sign off then go to a PA enhanced inspection shop to have them verify the weights to put on the new title and trailer tag. that leads to my next issue, its a tri-axle trailer but only has brakes on 2 axles, in PA i think all axles are required to have brakes (didn't find this out until after i bought the boat). the origin of manufacture has the weights on it (shipping = 1500lbs, GVWR = 8000lbs, capacity = 9984lbs).

    not sure of any other way around this? trailer is in great shape (built in 1986). it was custom ordered through Olympic Trailer in Hubbard, OH in 1986. tried finding them but the only Olympic Trailer i could find is in Washington state. ughhh. remind me to never buy an out of state trailer again.

    rant over....lol
     
  2. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    2010 Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    boatman, my suggestion is to take all the paperwork you have and go see the guys at the enhanced inspection station. You might want to call ahead to see if an appointment is needed. Sit down with them, explain all the things you have written above and beg them for their help.

    I don't know about PA but in WA the people that work in those departments have all kinds of power. It's up to you to convince them you're not trying to do anything illegal, just trying to play by the book. Once you convince them of that they likely will be able to help you.

    Good luck.
     
    Leardriver likes this.
  3. Sea Gull

    Sea Gull Active Member

    Oct 19, 2006
    CT
    2015 L650 Fly #509
    CAT C-18, 1,150 HP
    I had a similar experience many years ago, buying in New Hampshire and trying to register in Connecticut. The boat was no problem, but the trailer was a long beurocratic nightmare.

    The work around for me was CT had me post a bond for the value of the trailer and get a DMV inspection. It took me two years and lots of visits/ phone calls, but it got done.
     
  4. SCORPIO

    SCORPIO Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    Apr 7, 2008
    Delaware
    1989 300 DA
    Twin 5.7 Merc Alpha I
    You will need to install brakes on the third axle, PA requires brakes on all axles. I agree about going to enhanced inspection station and see what they can do.
     
  5. dpmulvey

    dpmulvey New Member SILVER Sponsor

    Dec 19, 2007
    Homeport: Charles City, VA
    1999/2007 330 Sundancer Hardtop.
    6.2 Merc Horixons
    1.5:1 Velvet Drives
    IF that doesn't work and IF you have relatives you can trust in another state that doesn't require all the hassle PA does, sell the trailer to them. Let them title it and register it for a year. Buy it from them with a title and bill of sale, and current registration.
     
  6. KevinC

    KevinC Active Member

    503
    Feb 25, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    2004 340 Sundancer
    1988 Proline Center Console - 90hp Mariner/Mercury
    1969 Boston Whaler
    Twin 8.1 V-drives
    Some states allow for the registration of "home built" trailers. I have been told that this is used as on option sometimes.

    -Kevin
     
  7. boatman37

    boatman37 Member

    734
    Jun 6, 2015
    pittsburgh
    1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer
    5.7 Merc
    a home built title is basically what i would be doing. i have to fill out a state form and have a police officer come see the trailer (i guess to verify i didn't steal it) then i have to take it to a state enhanced inspection facility to have the weights verified (i have this info on the original manufacturers statement of origin). then i have to go to a notary and have everything sent to the DMV. my only concern with this is that i have been to the closest enhanced inspection station and they are tough. if you buy anything with a salvage title in PA it has to go through enhanced inspection to get re-titled. i bought a wrecked car from a guy that did the repairs and the enhanced inspection failed because the cruise control didn't work. hard to think he would let me through with brakes on only 2 axles. but i plan to go talk to him tomorrow and take my paperwork to see what he has to say. i spoke with the PO who bought the trailer new in 1986 and he confirmed that it never had a VIN tag on it. he custom ordered it
     
  8. SCORPIO

    SCORPIO Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    Apr 7, 2008
    Delaware
    1989 300 DA
    Twin 5.7 Merc Alpha I
    Brakes are the easiest thing to fix, just buy a set of drum or disk brakes and install on that axle and plumb in the brake lines and you're done.
     
  9. boatman37

    boatman37 Member

    734
    Jun 6, 2015
    pittsburgh
    1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer
    5.7 Merc
    yeah, thought about that. wouldn't be too hard but not sure of the cost for something i only tow twice a year.
     
  10. boatman37

    boatman37 Member

    734
    Jun 6, 2015
    pittsburgh
    1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer
    5.7 Merc
    went to the enhanced inspection station today and it went well. i have the original manufacturers statement of origin from 1986 that is notarized so they were ok with using those weights. it didn't require a full inspection, only weight verification so they signed off on it. now have to have a police officer sign off then have the notary send everything in to the state. hopefully the rest goes
     
  11. paulswagelock

    paulswagelock Active Member

    Oct 25, 2010
    pa
    2018 SDX 270 OB on order
    Sold 2008 270 SLX 496 mag bravo 3
    Verado 300 pro
    Former 8.1 496 / bravo III
    Why bother with any of this if you only tow twice a year?
     
  12. sibnai1

    sibnai1 Member

    287
    Jul 18, 2014
    NJ, USA
    195 Bow Rider 5 Series
    4.3litre V6 I/O Alpha I Gen II
    glad to hear that things went better than you thought, If things change I've heard that Maine is the State to register trailers.
     
  13. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    2010 Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    Good job on getting it inspected. See, those guys who do that for a living are very thorough bit if they believe you're not trying to pull a fast one they go easy on ya.
     
  14. boatman37

    boatman37 Member

    734
    Jun 6, 2015
    pittsburgh
    1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer
    5.7 Merc
    the trailer is still in the previous owners name even though he signed a bill of sale. as far as Ohio knows he is still in possession of it. for liability reason i'm sure he would like it out of his name but also i need a license plate for it and can't get one without a title and without it registered in my name. the few times i have pulled it i grabbed a license plate off another trailer just to get from point A to point B. thats all well and good until i happen to encounter the police for whatever reason. i was stopped once years ago for a burned out light on my old car trailer and my plate was inside my truck because the bracket had broke off the trailer. i didn't get a ticket but had i had an illegal plate on there i'm sure i would have been in some trouble
     
  15. SeaVette

    SeaVette New Member

    14
    Sep 29, 2009
    Foley Al.
    1999 210 BR follows behind a 05 Tahoe SOLD
    Now have 2008 205 Sport
    5.0 L EFI
    Wow. here in Alabama, boats no titles. Trailers, no titles. no registration.
     
  16. boatman37

    boatman37 Member

    734
    Jun 6, 2015
    pittsburgh
    1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer
    5.7 Merc
    thought i had updated this thread but anyway...i was able to get it transferred. had to basically register it as a home built trailer. made it easier that i had the manufacturers statement of origin with the weights already on there. had to have the police sign off on the form then the notary sent everything in.
     

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