A vehicle lien represents money owed to the lien holder before obtaining free and clear title ownership. Lien holders include financial institutions, vehicle dealerships or private lending firms. When buying a motorcycle with a lien, multiple options are available to transfer ownership.

Paying Off a Lien

Funds received from the motorcycle sale price can pay off the existing lien when a lien holder is owed less or the sale price equivalent. Paying off the lien frees the title from prior financial obligations. Buyers should call the lien holder for the official lien amount and then send a check to that lender for the specified amount, thus avoiding the possibility of a scam.

Taking Over Payments

A buyer can also contact the motorcycle lien holder and ask to take over payments for the person selling the motorcycle. Inquire about interest charges, total amount owed and other fees that may be associated with paying off the lien.

Contacting the Lien Holder

The first thing a person buying a motorcycle attached to a lien should do is ask the seller for the lien holder information. After receiving contact information, call the lien holder and verify the amount of money owed.