Can I Trade a Vehicle That Has My Husband's Name on It?

Dealer Requirements

A dealership must follow state rules when accepting a trade-in vehicle. For this reason, your husband must sign the title. Your dealership likely requires your husband present to sign. If your husband is unable to come to the dealership to sign his portion of the vehicle title, the dealer may allow you to bring the title to him to obtain his signature. The dealership will speak to your husband to confirm his identity before doing so. Ask your dealership to explain your options.

Transferring Ownership Before Trading

If your husband owns the vehicle outright and you're driving it, you might want to ask him to sign the title over to you before you try to trade the car. Otherwise, your husband may want to be involved with the car purchase. States differ on title transfer requirements, but in most cases, your husband can simply sign his name on the vehicle's seller section to release his portion of ownership. If the vehicle is in both of your names, he must still sign the title.

Acceptable Paperwork

Your dealer will also accept a Power of Attorney form if you have one. A Power of Attorney form allows you to sign documents, including a vehicle title, on your husband's behalf. Your dealer might be able to provide you with this form or you can download the form from an Internet source. Expect to have the form notarized for it to validate it. Ask your dealership if it accepts the form and work with your husband to obtain it.

Overcoming Trade-in Issues

If you and your husband can't come to an agreement about the vehicle, you may want to sell it instead. Your husband may find selling the vehicle favorable if you agree to split the profit of the sale. Unfortunately, you and your husband will have to work together to sell or trade the vehicle. If he wants to keep the vehicle, then he has final say as the titled owner. You may also consider leaving the vehicle out of the purchase process.