Vehicle Industry Registration Procedures Manual

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Section 2 of 38

Chapter 1: General Registration Information

1.125 Signature by Power of Attorney (POA) (VC §1652)

A POA is a written document whereby one person (the principal) conveys to another the right to act for that person as attorney-in-fact. A POA may be used to release ownership on a title or bill of sale.

As referenced in this manual, a POA generally refers to a DMV form which is limited to vehicle/vessel transactions. However, the DMV also accepts a restricted POA (limited to a specific type of transaction, such as transfer of ownership) or a general POA (conveys the right to transact unlimited types of transactions).

For convenience, a Power of Attorney section was included on the Vehicle/Vessel Transfer and Reassignment Form (REG 262), but this does not prevent the use of the Power of Attorney (REG 260) form, which is available on the DMV website only.

A photocopy or fax copy of a general POA, including the REG 260 is acceptable. However, copies of the REG 262, a secure document that includes a Power of Attorney section, are not acceptable.

A POA must:

  • Contain the vehicle/vessel identification number (VIN/HIN).

Exception: A general POA will not contain a VIN/HIN.

  • Contain the name of the designated attorney-in-fact.
  • Be signed by the principal.
  • Accompany applications signed by the attorney-in-fact.

When a business entity is the attorney-in-fact, the business name must be included in the countersignature. Example: Jim Smith by Uome Loan Company by John Brown as POA.

Unacceptable Use of a POA—A POA cannot be used to:

  • Sign a certification or Statement of Facts (REG 256) form attesting to the knowledge of the principal, except when the certification is regarding disposition of the original California Certificate of Title on an Application for Duplicate or Transfer of Title (REG 227) form.
  • Disclose odometer mileage.
  • Reassign the right conveyed to the attorney-in-fact by the principal.
  • Appoint an attorney-in-fact pursuant to a POA by executors or administrators.
  • Assign the duties of a trust to an attorney-in-fact by a trustee. A trustee may assign specific duties to an attorney-in-fact, such as transferring a vehicle or retaining agents to advise and assist in the administration of the trust. A trustee cannot delegate all administrative duties. Therefore, accept only a restricted POA from a trustee, limited to a particular asset of the trust, or to a particular transaction.