By Naaziyah IsmailMon. 18 Dec. 20233min Read

How To Write A Bill Of Sale For A Car

Discover how to write a car bill of sale, including key details like buyer-seller information, vehicle specifics, price, and legal terms for a secure transaction.
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Crafting a bill of sale for a car is essential in legally transferring vehicle ownership, requiring detailed inclusion of the vehicle identification, purchase price, and both parties' contact details.

This document, pivotal for fulfilling legal requirements set by the Department of Motor Vehicles, ensures the proper and protected sale process, outlining the sale form, payment details, and transfer of ownership.

Naaziyah Ismail
Blog Author - B2B SaaS Content Writer
Naaziyah has written many tutorials on apps and software such as, Jira, Asana, Trello, and PDF Reader Pro. She excels at engagingly simplifying complex processes.

What is a Bill of Sale for a Car?

Let's dive into an effective introduction!

How to Write a Bill of Sale for a Car

Step 1: Select an Appropriate Template

Choose a sale form or template that complies with the legal requirements of your state, referencing guidelines from the Department of Motor Vehicles. This step is essential for regions like West Virginia or Rhode Island.

Step 2: Fill in Vehicle Details

Accurately enter all vehicle information, including the vehicle identification number (VIN), body type, make, model, year, current mileage, and license plate number, which are crucial for a legal transfer of ownership.

Step 3: State the Sale Price and Payment Method

Clearly document the selling price, method of payment (such as cash or promissory note), sale date, and applicable sales taxes as per local laws.

Step 4: Include Seller and Buyer Details

Provide comprehensive details of both the seller and buyer, including names, addresses, mailing addresses, and driver license numbers. All parties should sign to validate the sale, and involve a notary public if required.

Step 5: Add Additional Terms

Incorporate any extra terms like an "as-is" warranty or legal protection clauses. Detail specific agreements between the seller and buyer, such as conditions on the transfer of property.

Step 6: Complete an Odometer Disclosure Statement

Ensure the accuracy of the vehicle's reported mileage with an odometer disclosure statement, a mandatory step in many states for added protection.

Step 7: Finalize the Bill of Sale

Create a complete, well-drafted bill of sale, making sure all sections are filled accurately and without false statements. This includes details on title transfer and certificates of title if applicable.

Step 8: Keep Copies for Records and Submission

Retain copies of the sale documents for personal records and submit them to authorities like the county clerk or the Department of Motor Vehicles as part of the title transfer process. This is crucial for legal proof.

For instructions on legal documentation, you can also check our resume resource on How to Write a Bill of Sale.

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Use a Bill of Sale for a Car PDF Template

Using PDF Reader Pro's Bill of Sale for a Car template ensures legal compliance and ease of use with a user-friendly format that covers essential details like vehicle identification, purchase price, and ownership transfer. It offers a professional, customizable, and time-saving solution for both private sales and business transactions, streamlining the documentation process required by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Check out our guide on reselling for more great financial tips.

Bill of Sale of a Car: Best Practices

There are a few best practices for a bill of sale of a car, here are a few:

  1. Verify Vehicle Information: Ensure all vehicle details like make, model, VIN, and current mileage are accurately listed.
  2. Clarify Payment Details: Specify the selling price, method of payment, and any deposit made.
  3. Include Warranty Information: Clearly state if the car is sold 'as is' or if there's a warranty.
  4. Signatures and Date: Both buyer and seller should sign and date the bill of sale, possibly in the presence of a notary public for added legal validity.
  5. Odometer Disclosure: Include an accurate odometer reading to comply with federal law.
  6. Transfer of Title: Ensure the vehicle's title is transferred to the buyer, and any requirements like smog certificates are met.
  7. Sales Tax Implications: Address any applicable sales tax responsibilities.
  8. Keep Copies: Both parties should keep copies of the bill of sale for their records.
  9. Report the Sale: Notify the local Department of Motor Vehicles of the sale to release liability.
  10. Legal Review: Consider having the document reviewed by a legal professional, especially for high-value transactions.




Use PDF Reader Pro Templates to get the best format for your Bill of Sales!

Take a look at our Idaho Bill of Sale PDF template to simplify your sales documentation.

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Bill of Sale for a Car: FAQ

What happens if there are errors in the bill of sale?

Errors in a bill of sale, such as incorrect vehicle information or sale price, can lead to legal complications. It's crucial to ensure accuracy before both parties sign the document.

Is a bill of sale legally binding?

Yes, a properly completed and signed bill of sale is a legally binding document that establishes the terms and conditions of the sale of the vehicle.

Can I create a bill of sale for a car online?

Absolutely. Online tools like PDF Reader Pro offer templates for creating a bill of sale, ensuring all necessary information is included and formatted correctly.

How do I handle a bill of sale for a car sold “as is”?

Clearly state in the bill of sale that the car is sold “as is,” meaning no warranties are provided for the condition of the vehicle post-sale.

Should the bill of sale include a payment plan?

If the purchase involves a payment plan, details of the arrangement, including payment amounts and due dates, should be explicitly stated in the bill of sale.

What if the car has a lien or outstanding loan?

The bill of sale should mention any existing lien or loan, and arrangements for its clearance should be agreed upon before completing the sale.

Explore our resource on the Bill of Sale Arizona PDF Template to streamline your transaction processes.

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Learning the Format of a Bill of Sale for a Car

Understanding the format of a bill of sale for a car is essential for both the buyer and the seller in ensuring a smooth and legally sound transaction.

It's important to include comprehensive details like vehicle identification, purchase price, and transfer of ownership, and to adhere to legal requirements such as notarization where necessary. By following these guidelines, both parties can confidently navigate the sales process, ensuring a clear transfer of ownership and protecting their legal rights.

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