Are documentation fees different from title transfer fees?

I am in the process of negotiating a new car, and my dealer is asking for doc fees AND a title transfer fee. From all research I have done, it sounds like the same thing. Please clarify.

Aileen, Lisle, Ill.

Title and documentation fees are separate. The fee to put the title in your name is $95 and is set by the state of Illinois, not the dealer. You will have to pay extra fees to the state to register the new vehicle and obtain new license plates or transfer existing ones.

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The doc fee is levied by the dealer to cover the cost of processing the paperwork involved in selling and registering a new vehicle. It is not a mandatory fee, but Illinois dealers can charge a maximum of $154.38 in 2010, and a dealership is supposed to charge every customer the same amount. That means if the first customer of the year pays $150, all those who follow should be charged the same amount.

The maximum doc fee is adjusted annually by the Illinois attorney general’s office based on the federal Consumer Price Index.

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Answered by Rick Popely on May 4, 2010 | Permalink

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