Chapter 3, Section A:
Documents Required to Title and Register a New Vehicle

Revised November 4, 2011

  1. Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin (MCO)

    All new vehicles built by a manufacturer are identified by the issuance of a Manufacturer’s Certificate of Origin (MCO). All MCO’s must be the original document issued by the manufacturer. Photocopies will not be accepted. If original is lost, stolen or mutilated it is possible that the manufacturer will issue a duplicate MCO.

    The MCO must show:
    a. Complete descriptive information of the vehicle;
    b. Complete assignment from the manufacturer to a franchised dealer (an MCO assigned to a non-franchised New Mexico dealer must first be converted to a New Mexico Title before the non-franchised dealer can negotiate the MCO);
    c. A franchised dealer to the first purchaser of the vehicle.

    An MCO may be accepted without notarization of the assignment if the Motor Vehicle Division in the state of origin does not require notarization. If the assignment and reassignment field have a certification statement and a place for notarization, do not reject if assignment is not notarized.
  2. Purchase Agreement

    The purchase agreement is required on every title transaction involving a dealer sale. The purchase agreement for new vehicles must be the original or a certified copy, including purchase agreements from out-of-state dealers. This document is essential for the computations of the excise tax, based upon the net sale price of the vehicle. A non-certified copy will be accepted if the sale price conforms to the NADA Retail Pricing Index Guide (i.e. is at least 80% of the N.A.D.A. new car/truck MSRP value of the vehicle). If any taxes are paid out-of-state a certified copy of the purchase agreement must be provided.

    The purchase agreement must show the following:
    a. A complete description of the vehicle;
    b. A complete description of any trade-in vehicle;
    c. The gross sales price before trade-in deduction, if any;
    d. The net sales price less any discounts;
    e. If taxes are paid to out-of-state dealer they will be credited towards New Mexico taxes due.

    NOTE: An “Intent to Purchase” document cannot be accepted as a purchase agreement.
  3. Odometer Statement

    The Motor Vehicle Division requires that the seller and buyer of a motor vehicle attest to the accuracy of the odometer mileage reading at the time of sale. The odometer mileage statement can be attested to in the assignment on the back of the MCO, on MVD Form 10187 “Odometer Mileage Statement” or MVD Form 10002 “Application for Title and Registration.” Odometer mileage disclosure statements may be accepted provided that they conform to federal standards, meaning they must have the language stating mileage is actual (AM), exceeds mechanical limits (EL) or warning odometer discrepancy (NM). The odometer statement is required on all motor vehicle title transactions, except off-highway vehicles.
  4. Proof of Trade-In Vehicle

    If a vehicle was traded-in on the new vehicle, a copy of the trade-in registration or copy of Certificate of Title is required. Any vehicle can be traded for any vehicle. Title work brought in by dealers must include verification of ownership on vehicle trade-in. If proof of trade-in is a copy of the Title, verify that license plate number belongs to applicant on automated system before reassigning the plate to the new vehicle.
  5. Affirmation of Insurance (66-5-208) NMSA

    The Mandatory Financial Responsibility Act (MFRA) of 1984 (Chapter 11 Section A) requires that every owner of a motor vehicle registered in New Mexico be able to demonstrate proof of financial responsibility for liability for damages, which may arise from the operation of the motor vehicle. Applicant must affirm that vehicle meets minimum requirements, which are: $25,000/bodily injury to or death of one person in any one accident. $50,000/bodily injury to or death of two or more persons in any one accident. $10,000/injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident.
  6. Power of Attorney (POA) General or Limited

    a. Must be notarized;
    b. Owner must sign in ink;
    c. Certified copies of “POA” may be accepted;
    d. If notary’s commission expires, POA remains active until rescinded by owner;
    e. POA cannot be used to execute any transaction after death of grantor;
    f. Dealers must use a secure POA only;
    g. Proof of ID for Owner's Representative (Motor Vehicle photo I.D. card or license).

    NOTE: A Person appointed with a Power of Attorney CANNOT assign their authority by Power of Attorney to another individual.
  7. Notice of Additional Requirements

    When reviewing all the documents submitted by the applicant, if you should find that ANY of the required documents are missing, you must prepare MVD Form 10282 “Notice of Additional Requirements for completion of Vehicle Transaction”. Use this form to document all requirements that have been met and especially to document everything that is missing or incorrect.

    Transactions will be rejected if documents lack any necessary information, if documents do not have all signatures, or if documents are incorrect or missing information. Any discrepancies found shall be explained to the applicant. Be sure to review documents carefully and note all additional requirements necessary to complete the transaction. Date the form, give it to the applicant and advise them all required documents must be returned within 30 days of the date on the form to avoid late registration penalties and late transfer fees.

    Reject the transaction if there are any erasures, alterations, type-overs or discrepancies on any of the documents. To the extent possible, documents should have the same typeset, ink, etc, to avoid being reviewed by staff as an alteration.
  8. Title Application and Owner’s Signature

    When lien holder, dealer or title company is submitting the title work for applicant, the Title Application completely filled out must be included. The owner or the authorized representative must sign, in ink, on the Title Application. If multiple owners names are joined with “AND”, then both/all signatures are required. If a representative is signing for the applicant, a notarized power of attorney is required. An officer of a company may sign the Application for Title without a Power of Attorney.
  9. Lien Holder Information

    a. File and maturity date;
    b. Name and address;
    c. Lien holder key code, if any
  10. New Mexico Residence Address Required (66-3-4A) (PQU#64rev2)

    Individual owner/applicants for title and registration must provide a bona fide New Mexico residence address and mail address. Acceptable proof of New Mexico residence address can be either: a) a current New Mexico driver's license (DL) or identification card (ID); or b) the same two documents that would be required to prove residency for a DL or regular ID, with reference to the acceptable documents chart and the new rule Q&A. If the DL/ID address and the registration address are not the same, two documents will be required as proof of residency for the vehicle registration.

    When there are multiple owners, at least one owner must be a bona fide resident of New Mexico. Proof of identity and New Mexico residency is only required for that one owner, who should be listed as the first individual owner on the vehicle’s registration and who is the only owner who can use the vehicle registration as proof of the owner’s New Mexico residence address. For this purpose it makes no difference whether the joint ownership designation is recorded as “and” or “or.”

    Similar documentation shall be required of any applicant for vehicle registration and certificate of title that is a firm, association, corporation or other entity (non-individual) owner and is not an established MVD customer. In addition to the specific examples (such as utility bill, insurance bill or bank statement) listed on the chart, acceptable documents to prove New Mexico business address for an entity owner would include a business license, articles of incorporation or equivalent documents.

    Reject the application if the applicant does not have a New Mexico residence or business and mailing address.

    Exception: (See also PQU#64rev2) Sec. 66-3-301E NMSA 1978 requires that a nonresident doing business in New Mexico and owning and regularly operating a vehicle here shall register the vehicle. If the nonresident business does have a bona fide New Mexico business address, the same documentation is required as for any other entity owner. However, it is sometimes the case that a nonresident business, in order to comply with 66-3-301E, wants to register a vehicle in New Mexico but has no New Mexico business address. In that case, the 66-3-4A requirement of a bona fide New Mexico business address does not apply, and we will accept the owner’s out-of-state business address for our records.

    Exception (see Chapter 14 Section A - RVs): A non-resident who takes possession of an RV in New Mexico may register the RV in New Mexico (no proof of NM residency is required). Proof of delivery in New Mexico is required.
  11. Vehicles must be Titled and Registered Within 30 Days of Purchase to Avoid Late Registration Penalties.

    The date of sale of a vehicle and the beginning of the 30-day registration requirement period is established by the date of assignment on the MCO or dealer’s invoice. If the dates on the MCO and the dealer’s invoice are not the same, the earliest date is the effective date of sale. Failure to apply for Title and Registration within 30 days after sale as shown by the MCO assignment, to a New Mexico resident will subject the new owner to registration penalties.