What Does MSO Mean for a Vehicle?

  • 2 min read

The manufacturer’s statement of origin (MSO), also known as the manufacturer’s certificate of origin (MCO) is the original document from the manufacturer that states the VIN and other vehicle specifications. You can think of the MSO as the vehicle’s “birth certificate”.

The MSO will identify the vehicle’s model year, color, optional equipment, and other important information about your car. It also includes an odometer statement that shows mileage at the time of shipment from the factory to the dealer (or first retail buyer).

How does an MSO differ from a title?

The MSO and the certificate of title are not the same documents. Think of the MSO as the birth certificate of the vehicle. The MSO is issued first before a title is issued to the retail buyer. The certificate of title is issued to the owner when ownership is applied for through the DMV.

How do you get an MSO for a vehicle?

When you buy a new vehicle, the dealer is supposed to give you the MSO. If you didn’t receive the MSO from the dealer, or it’s been lost, contact the dealer to reissue the document.

How to get a title with an MSO

If you are applying for a new title using your MSO as proof of ownership, the application process is typically straightforward since you are the first-ever owner of this vehicle. To get a title for a new vehicle using your MSO, apply using your state’s title application and present your MSO as proof of ownership along with the proper identification, fees, and additional required documents. Depending on your state and vehicle, additional steps may be required by your state’s DMV agency.

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