When you take out a loan for the purchase of a new vehicle, the lender puts a lien on the certificate of title for the vehicle. This keeps the car, truck or SUV under legal ownership of the lender until the amount due is paid in full. But all too often, a borrower decides to sell the vehicle before it's paid off. Even once you've paid in full, the title may not arrive in the mail as planned. If your lien was originally with GMAC, you should know that GMAC Financial rebranded as Ally Financial in 2010, so you'll be making your release request through Ally.
Gather Your Documentation
Whether you've paid off your loan or not, before you can take any steps toward getting your lien released, you'll need all of your information. This includes your vehicle identification number, the name on the account, the account number and the address on the title. Once you have it all together, you're ready to make a call to Ally.
Contact Ally Financial
To have your lien released, contact Ally at 888-925-2559 or by chat to get your payoff amount. If you have the funds available, you'll need to pay the remaining balance in order to get the lien released. Once Ally has the full amount, the company will release your lien. You can take this lien release notification to your local DMV to get a Certificate of Title for your vehicle.
Transferring the Title
If you plan to sell the vehicle before paying it off in full, the required title transfer makes things a little more complicated. If you're dealing with the sale in person, you can meet the buyer at an Ally Financial branch and have them pay off the final amount, at which point the lien will be released. If there isn't a branch close to you, a bank should be able to help facilitate the transfer of funds from the buyer to Ally Financial in order to get the lien released. Just be aware this part of the process may delay the transaction by a few days.
If Ally Financial has a lien on your vehicle, you'll need to pay the full amount off to have the lien released. This can be done through refinancing the loan through another lender, paying the amount off yourself or selling the vehicle and having the buyer pay off the total. Once you have a lien release form in hand, you'll still need to visit your DMV to get a copy of the title in your own name.