Motor Vehicle

Last updated April 10th, 2024

  1. Home »
  2. Bill of Sale »
  3. Motor Vehicle

What is a Motor Vehicle (Car) Bill of Sale Form?

\r\n\"Bill-of-Sale-for-Car\"\r\n\r\nA bill of sale is a legal form that is used to transfer ownership of interests from one person to another. It is used in transactions, including the sale, exchange, gift, or mortgage of objects. Bills of sale are used to transfer ownership of goods, specifically moveable tangible goods, and can only be used by individuals and businesses that are not corporated.\r\n\r\nIn England and Wales, bills of sale are regulated by two Victorian pieces of legislation: the Bills of Sale Act 1878 and the Bills of Sale Act (1878) Amendment Act 1882. These laws were created because of the issue of fraudulent use of bills of sale.\r\n\r\nIn the United States, bills of sale have a historical origin in the 19th century, and various bills of sale laws were enacted to prevent fraudulent practices. They can be of two types: absolute bills of sale, which are simple contracts of sale of goods, and conditional bills of sale, which involve transferring personal property as security for a loan.\r\n\r\nThe historical perspective of bills of sale, their use as a form of consumer credit, and how they address fraud and consumer protection. In the 21st century, bills of sale are primarily used as \”logbook loans,\”. The Law Commission will replace the Bills of Sale Acts with a new Goods Mortgages Act.\r\n\r\n\"\"\r\n\r\nThe motor vehicle (car) bill of sale document is a legal form that records the transaction between a buyer and a seller of a car, truck, or motorcycle. It is signed as the final step in the sales process after both parties have received the vehicle. Once signed, the buyer must keep an original copy of the bill of sale and the certificate of title as proof of ownership.\r\n\r\nThese documents are necessary to register the vehicle with the local DMV office.\r\n\r\nThe term \”bill of sale\” was initially used to describe any document showing or facilitating personal property transfer for a price. In many cases, the seller would still keep possession of the property and continue to act as its owner, even though they had sold it. This could create a situation where someone else might unknowingly accept the same property as collateral for a loan without realizing that it was already mortgaged to someone else. This made bills of sale a popular tool for fraudsters.\r\n\r\nTo prevent this, the US developed several laws governing bills of sale. The first of these was the Bills of Sale Act of 1854, which was later replaced by the Bills of Sale Act of 1878. This second act was very similar to the first. Finally, the Bills of Sale Act of 1882 was passed, further refining the rules around bills of sale.\r\n

The Ins and Outs of Creating a Bill of Sale for Your Car

\r\nBuying a car is exciting. It\’s a journey filled with choices about make, model, and color, but there\’s an important document we can\’t overlook: the car bill of sale. It protects both the buyer and seller in the car-buying adventure. It\’s about trust and safety.\r\n

What is a bill of sale for a car?

\r\nA bill of sale for a car is a legal document that serves as evidence of the transfer of ownership from one person to another. It includes important details about the vehicle and the transaction, providing both parties involved with a record of the sale.\r\n\r\nIn a bill of sale, these contents should be included:\r\n\r\nSeller and buyer details: The names and contact information of both the seller and buyer of the vehicle.\r\n\r\nVehicle description: The bill of sale will specify the make, model, year, color, vehicle identification number (VIN), and any other details about the car being sold.\r\n\r\nPurchase price: The amount of money that the buyer agrees to pay for the car. This part of the document ensures transparency and clarity.\r\n\r\nPayment terms: If the buyer pays the purchase price in installments or uses any other payment arrangement, these details will be included in the bill of sale.\r\n\r\nDate and location: The document will state the date and place where the car sale is taking place. This helps establish the jurisdiction where the deal is legally binding.\r\nA bill of sale provides legal protection and ensures that both the seller and buyer clearly understand the transaction. It can also be used to prove ownership when registering the car with the appropriate government authority.\r\n\r\nOdometer reading: Record the current mileage on the car\’s odometer at the time of the sale. This is essential for documenting the car\’s condition and to ensure transparency regarding its usage.\r\n\r\nCondition of the car: Describe the overall condition of the vehicle, including any known defects or damages. This protects the buyer by accurately representing the car\’s condition before purchase.\r\n\r\nWarranty information: If the seller provides any warranty or guarantee, it should be clearly stated in the bill of sale. This includes any terms and conditions associated with the warranty.\r\n\r\nSignatures: Finally, the bill of sale should be signed and dated by both the seller and the buyer to indicate their agreement to the terms and conditions of the sale.\r\n\r\nBy including all of these details in a bill of sale for a car, both the seller and the buyer can have a clear and legally binding document that outlines the specifics of the transaction. Remember to carefully read and understand the bill of sale before signing it. If you have any questions or concerns, it\’s always a good idea to consult with a legal professional to ensure that all the terms and conditions are included.\r\n

Understanding a Car Bill of Sale

\r\nShowing who owned the car before is a snapshot of the car\’s past. This snapshot includes make, model, and identifying numbers—key details to prevent mix-ups.\r\nIt wraps up the deal, confirming the change of guardianship for new owner.\r\n

Bill of Sale Basics

\r\nBill of Sales are promised on paper, proving that one person sold a car to another. This document is a key player in the car-buying team, making sure everyone agrees on the car\’s details. It is a trusty snapshot of the car\’s journey from one driveway to another. The bill of sale captures the car\’s backstory—make, model, and VIN—with a promise it\’s moving on to its next epic chapter. Every car has a story, and a bill of sale is its first chapter.\r\nConsider this paper as your car\’s birth certificate when joining your family. It includes crucial details (just like your birth certificate says your name and birthday), like the price you paid and the date you became its new owner.\r\n

Legal Significance

\r\n• Proof of Transfer: It magically turns the ownership from one person to another.\r\n• Tax Time: When it\’s time to do taxes, this paper is like a memory chip to remind you of the car\’s price.\r\n• Legal Shield: If someone says, \”That\’s my car!\” you can show this paper as a shield to prove it\’s really yours.\r\n• Loan Document: Banks often want to peek at this paper before lending you treasure to pay for the car.\r\n• Registration Requirement: Many places won’t let you register your new ride without this document.\r\n\r\nThe document seals the magical agreement, making it official in this world. Often, your bill of sale is the key that unlocks the door to your new car adventure, ensuring the paperwork recognizes your claim to the the driver\’s seat.\r\n

List of States that do NOT Require a Notary

\r\nAlabama\r\n\r\nAlaska\r\n\r\nArizona\r\n\r\nArkansas\r\n\r\nCalifornia\r\n\r\nColorado\r\n\r\nConnecticut\r\n\r\nDelaware\r\n\r\nFlorida\r\n\r\nGeorgia\r\n\r\nHawaii\r\n\r\nIdaho\r\n\r\nIllinois\r\n\r\nIndiana\r\n\r\nIowa\r\n\r\nKansas\r\n\r\nKentucky\r\n\r\nMaine\r\n\r\nMassachusetts\r\n\r\nMichigan\r\n\r\nMinnesota\r\n\r\nMississippi\r\n\r\nMissouri\r\n\r\nNevada\r\n\r\nNew Hampshire\r\n\r\nNew Jersey\r\n\r\nNew Mexico\r\n\r\nNew York\r\n\r\nNorth Carolina\r\n\r\nNorth Dakota\r\n\r\nOhio\r\n\r\nOklahoma\r\n\r\nOregon\r\n\r\nPennsylvania\r\n\r\nRhode Island\r\n\r\nSouth Carolina\r\n\r\nSouth Dakota\r\n\r\nTennessee\r\n\r\nTexas\r\n\r\nUtah\r\n\r\nVermont\r\n\r\nVirginia\r\n\r\nWashington\r\n\r\nWisconsin\r\n

Preparing Your Bill of Sale

\r\nBefore creating your Bill of Sale, gather all your car\’s details. In your Bill of Sale, mix in essentials like your car\’s make, model, and year, along with the agreed-upon price, almost like ingredients for the purchasing power. Don\’t forget to sprinkle in both the buyer\’s and seller\’s contact information.\r\n\r\nFinally, make sure to include the current odometer reading and the sale date, sealing the deal in your quest for car ownership.\r\n

Required Documents

\r\nNow, to officially transfer your car, some important papers are needed. Along with the Bill of Sale, you may need the car\’s title, proving you\’re the current owner and have the right to sell it.\r\n\r\nProof of ownership is essential, so the car\’s title is a must-have.\r\n\r\nIf a loan is involved, you\’ll need to show that it\’s paid off.\r\n\r\nDon\’t forget a government-issued ID (driver\’s license) to confirm who you are.\r\n\r\nSome places require a notarized Bill of Sale, which is a stamp certifying your document is authentic in the eyes of the law.\r\n\r\nLastly, record any reports or warranties you\’re passing along, making sure the next car owner knows exactly what kind of chariot they\’re getting.\r\n

Accurate Vehicle Description

\r\nThe cars make, model, and year are important clues to its history.\r\n\r\nColors, features, and any unique accessories.\r\n\r\nAnd if it\’s sporting any scars or quirks, like a scratch or a dent, those must be included, too. Transparency is key to trust.\r\n

Sale Details Essentials

\r\n\"\"\r\n\r\nTerms of the trade must be spelled out clearly.\r\n\r\nKey details like the sale date and amount must be clearly stated. These facts show when and for how much the car was handed to a new adventurer.\r\nMake sure the total amount is truthful and clear.\r\n\r\nImportant numbers on the bill of sale: the purchase price. It is a testament to the agreement, stamped with the honesty of the deal. This amount is like a spell that binds the transaction with integrity. An oath on paper binds.\r\n\r\nThe bill of sale should also include promises or warranties being passed on as if the former owner. These commitments ensure that the car\’s reliability or its protections continue onto the next part of its journey.\r\n

Legal Requirements by State

\r\nEach state holds its own set of rules for car bills of sale. Some require this document as proof of transfer, like a certificate.\r\n\r\nIn some realms, a notary – a trusted scribe of oaths – must witness the signing. This ensures that no deceit taints the exchange of gold.\r\n\r\nCertain states don\’t need a bill of sale to transfer cars. But wise people will keep one, as proof of their fair and honorable bargain.\r\n

State-Specific Stipulations

\r\nEvery state in our vast land has its own set of secret codes and rules for a car bill of sale.\r\n\r\n• California may require a thumbprint for added authenticity.\r\n• In Arizona, the vehicle\’s emission abilities might need to be recorded.\r\n• Connecticut asks for an Oath of the Odometer to confirm how far the steed has roamed.\r\n• Georgia\’s spellbinders insist a notary witness the bill\’s signing.\r\n• The great state of Montana might need proof of no sales tax from other realms.\r\n\r\nSome states will need a notary\’s witnessing while others won\’t blink an eye without it.\r\nIn many corners of our country, buyers may need to show this paper to prove they are the new guardians of their vehicles.\r\n

Notarization: Is it Needed?

\r\nWhen you\’re trading cars, think of notarization as a special seal of approval.\r\n

      • \r\n


    • Check Local Laws: Some places say \”yes\” to notarization for a car bill of sale; others say \”nope.\”


    • Find a Notary if Needed: This person\’s job is to watch and ensure everyone signs the bill of sale correctly.


    • Safety: Even if it\’s not a must-have, getting it notarized can help keep things extra safe.


\r\nGetting that notary stamp can make your car bill of sale even stronger!\r\n

Additional Forms to Consider

\r\nWhen selling a car, there\’s more than just the bill of sale. Sometimes, you\’ll need extra papers like an odometer disclosure statement, to show the car\’s mileage. This piece of paper tells the truth about how many miles the car has rocked and rolled. It\’s super important because knowing a car\’s mileage helps buyers know if it\’s been around the block a few times or is practically a newbie on the road.\r\n\r\nPlus, there might be a title transfer form that\’s like a magic wand, officially changing the car\’s owner. You\’ll need this to prove that you\’re the car\’s new fairy godparent, taking on all its enchanted journeys. The title transfer makes it crystal clear who\’s responsible for the car now, so there\’s no mix-up in the kingdom of cars.\r\n\r\nAnd don\’t forget about a bill of sale\’s best buddy, the sales tax form. This one isn\’t as fun but still super important—it\’s like the toll you pay at a bridge. It tells the treasury trolls precisely what they need to know about the money changing hands. Without it, they might not let you pass into the land of legally driving your car.\r\n\r\nRegarding trade-ins, you\’ll want a vehicle trade-in agreement form. It\’s like a trade spell where both sellers and buyers agree to swap cars. This form ensures that everyone knows what treasures or trinkets are being exchanged. It creates a straightforward story of the trade, so later on, there are no forgotten tales or confusion on what was agreed upon, keeping the storybook of car ownership accurate and without plot twists.\r\n

After the Sale: Next Steps

\r\nOnce you\’ve conquered the mountain of paperwork and the magical keys to the car are in your hands, it\’s time to square away a few more details. Glide down to the realm of the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), where you\’ll register your newfound chariot and get license plates if needed. Like a badge of honor, these plates will declare your noble right to steer the car on all the king\’s roads. Don\’t forget – insurance is also a must! The trusty shield protects you from unexpected bills if there\’s ever a mishap.\r\n

Can I create my own bill of sale for a car?

\r\nYes, you can create your own bill of sale for a car! A bill of sale is a legal document that proves the sale and transfer of ownership of a car from one person to another. While it\’s always a good idea to consult with a lawyer or legal expert, you can create a basic bill of sale on your own.\r\n\r\nWhen creating your own bill of sale, make sure to include important information such as:\r\n

      • \r\n


    • The date of the sale


    • The names and contact information of both the buyer and the seller


    • A detailed description of the car, including the make, model, year, color, vehicle identification number (VIN), and license plate number


    • The purchase price and any other agreed-upon terms or conditions


    • Any warranties or guarantees, if applicable


\r\nIt\’s essential to be as accurate and detailed as possible to avoid future misunderstandings or disputes. Remember that each state or country may have specific requirements or regulations for a bill of sale, so it\’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the laws in your area.\r\n\r\nRemember, a bill of sale is a legal document, so it\’s always a good idea to have both the buyer and the seller sign and date the document. This helps ensure that both parties are aware of and agree to the terms of the sale.\r\n\r\nCreating your own bill of sale can be a cost-effective and convenient solution when buying or selling a car. However, if you have any doubts or concerns, it\’s best to seek professional advice to ensure you follow all the legal requirements.\r\n

How do I obtain a copy of a bill of sale for a car?

\r\nTo obtain a copy of a bill of sale for a car, you can follow these simple steps:\r\n

      • \r\n


    • Contact the Seller or Dealership: Reach out to the person or business from whom you purchased the car. They should have a copy of the bill of sale that they can provide to you.


    • Check Your Personal Records: If you don\’t have any luck contacting the seller, check your own files and records. Sometimes we forget that we have already received a copy of the bill of sale and have it stored away somewhere.


    • Contact the DMV: If you still can\’t find a copy of the bill of sale, you can contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) or the relevant government agency responsible for vehicle registration. They should be able to assist you in obtaining a copy of the bill of sale.


    • Provide Necessary Information: When contacting the DMV or government agency, be prepared to provide them with specific details about the car, such as the make, model, year, and Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). This information will help them locate the correct bill of sale for you.


    • Pay any Fees: Depending on your location, a small fee may be associated with obtaining a copy of the bill of sale. Ask about any fees and be prepared to pay them if necessary.



Are there any taxes or fees associated with a bill of sale for a car?

\r\nYes, taxes and fees are typically associated with a bill of sale for a car. When you buy a car, you not only have to pay for the actual price of the vehicle, but also some additional costs that come with it. These costs are sometimes referred to as taxes and fees.\r\n\r\nOne of the main fees that you may encounter is the sales tax. Sales tax is a percentage of the purchase price of the car that the government collects. The specific tax rate may vary depending on the state you live in, but it is usually around a certain percentage of the car\’s total price.\r\n\r\nIn addition to sales tax, there might be other fees that you need to consider. These fees could include things like title transfer fees, registration fees, and documentation fees. Title transfer fees are charged to change the car ownership from the seller to the buyer. Registration fees are paid to get the car registered in your name and to obtain license plates. Lastly, documentation fees cover the cost of processing paperwork and documents related to the sale of the car.\r\n\r\nIt\’s important to remember that the exact taxes and fees associated with a bill of sale for a car can vary depending on your location and other factors. It\’s always a good idea to check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) or a trusted professional to get the most accurate and up-to-date information.\r\n

Rent Car Before Purchase

\r\nRenting a car before purchasing your vehicle is a great way to make sure you want to go through with your bill of sale agreement. Book online with Turo.\r\n


A Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale should include the following information:

\r\n– Buyer\’s name and address\r\n– Seller\’s name and address\r\n– Vehicle details, such as make, model, year, and body style\r\n– Vehicle identification number (VIN)\r\n– Date of sale\r\n– Transaction details, including the purchase price, trade, or gift\r\n– Warranty information and details are usually sold on an \”as-is, where-is\” basis.\r\n

Motor Vehicle (Car) Bill of Sale on Youtube

\r\nYouTube (eForms) \r\n

Standard Bill of Sale

\r\nStandard blank bill of sale PDF template\r\n

Bill of Sale for Car Sample