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Free Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale Template

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Document and article by on November 7, 2023 Written by Easy Legal Docs Editorial Team

If you’ve ever bought or sold a car, you’ve likely come across the term “Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale.” But what exactly is it, and why is it so crucial? Continue reading for a clear and concise breakdown, and to download our free Vehicle Bill of Sale template.

What Is a Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale?

A Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale is a legal document used when buying or selling a car, motorcycle, truck, or boat. It serves as a written record of the transaction and includes essential information about the vehicle and the terms of the sale.

Is it Legally Binding?

Yes. Once properly executed, this document becomes a contract. It verifies the agreement between buyer and seller. If one party doesn’t uphold their end, the other could pursue legal action. So, it’s not just a formality; it’s a document with legal weight.

Key Elements of the Bill of Sale

A Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale is not just any piece of paper. It contains specific details that make it valid and legally binding:

  • Parties Involved: This refers to the seller and buyer, along with their addresses and sometimes contact information.
  • Vehicle Specifics: Think of the make, model, year, and the all-important Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
  • Sale Dynamics: This encompasses the sale date, how much was paid, and the mode of payment.

Remember, while a Bill of Sale is crucial, it doesn’t replace the vehicle’s title. It’s the title that legally designates ownership. The Bill of Sale is more about the transaction itself.

Do You Need One?

While it might seem like just another piece of paperwork, having a Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale can be a lifesaver:

  • Transferring Title: In many places, you’ll need this bill when transferring the vehicle’s title.
  • Ownership Proof: It’s your evidence if someone disputes your vehicle’s ownership.
  • Legal Safety Net: It offers protection. For instance, if you purchase a car “as is” and later discover issues, this bill reminds both parties of the initial agreement.

Although it’s beneficial, whether you’ll need one depends on your location and transaction nature. It’s always good to check local regulations or consult a professional.

Alternate Names to Know

Depending on where you are, the “Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale” might go by another name. Some common alternatives include Vehicle Bill of Sale, Automobile Bill of Sale, or even Vehicle Transfer Form. No matter the name, the purpose remains the same: recording the vehicle transaction details.

Using our Free Template: A Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Begin with Basic Information

Start by filling out the date on which the transaction is taking place where it says [DATE]. Following that, write down the full names of both the seller and the buyer in the spaces marked [SELLER NAME] and [BUYER NAME].

Step 2: Input Sale Amount

In the section that reads [SALE AMOUNT], indicate the total sum of money the buyer agrees to pay for the vehicle.

Step 3: Detail the Vehicle

For the “Vehicle Specifics” section, you’ll need to provide details about the vehicle being sold:

  • Make: Input the brand or manufacturer of the vehicle, for example, “Toyota” or “Ford”, in the [VEHICLE MAKE] slot.
  • Model: Specify the model name or number, like “Corolla” or “F-150”, replacing [VEHICLE MODEL].
  • Color: Mention the vehicle’s primary color in the [VEHICLE COLOR] section.
  • Year: Indicate the manufacturing year of the vehicle at [VEHICLE YEAR].
  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN): Every vehicle has a unique VIN. Enter this number where it says [VEHICLE VIN].
  • License Plate Number: Provide the current license plate number of the vehicle in the [LICENSE PLATE NUMBER] section.
  • Odometer Reading: Lastly, at [VEHICLE MILEAGE], input the vehicle’s current mileage or odometer reading.

Step 4: Seller Certification

The seller must confirm the accuracy of the odometer reading. They should read the provided statement and then sign below where it says “Signature”.

Step 5: Acknowledge Warranties and Conditions

This section outlines various warranties associated with the sale. It’s essential both parties read and understand these terms, especially the condition in which the vehicle is being sold.

Step 6: Governing Law

In the “Governing Law” section, enter the state or country whose laws will oversee this bill. Replace [STATE OR COUNTRY] with the appropriate jurisdiction.

Step 7: Signatures from Both Parties

To finalize the Bill of Sale, both the seller and buyer must sign the document. Each party should:

  • Sign where it says “Signed (signature)”.
  • Print their name below their signature.
  • Date their signature to confirm when the document was signed.

After these steps, both the buyer and the seller should retain a copy of the filled-out Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale for their records. This document serves as proof of the transaction and may be required for various administrative or legal purposes in the future.

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Document Sample

Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale Template

Below you can see a sample of the Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale template:

Template Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale

Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale FAQ's

What is a motor vehicle Bill of Sale?

A Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale is a legal document that verifies the sale and transfer of a vehicle from a seller to a buyer. It serves as evidence of the transaction and details the terms of the sale, including price, vehicle information, and both parties' details.

Can I use the Bill of Sale as proof of ownership?

While it's evidence of the transaction, it isn't the official proof of ownership. The vehicle title handles that. However, the Bill of Sale can be vital in facilitating the title transfer.

Is a digital version of the Motor Vehicle Bill of Sale valid?

In many jurisdictions, digital versions are acceptable. However, it's essential to ensure they capture all required details and both parties' signatures. Verify with local regulations.

What if I lose my Bill of Sale?

It's advisable to keep multiple copies. If lost, the seller or buyer may have a copy. Some jurisdictions might allow you to retrieve a copy if filed with local authorities. Always keep a digital backup when possible.

How detailed should the vehicle description be?

The more detailed, the better. Essential elements include make, model, year, color, and especially the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). Some templates may also have space for mileage and general condition.

Do both parties need to sign the Bill of Sale?

Yes, both the seller and buyer should sign the document to verify the transaction's accuracy and agreement.

Can I use the Bill of Sale template for other types of vehicles, like boats or motorcycles?

While the core idea is similar, different vehicle types may have unique requirements or additional details. It's best to use a template specifically designed for the vehicle type in question.

Why does the sale price need to be on the Bill of Sale?

Documenting the sale price can be essential for tax purposes and to protect both parties. It provides clarity on the agreed amount, which can be useful in case of future disputes.

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