Are you wondering what to give as proof of the sale of personal property? Selling a private property is a tricky affair-you may end up buying fake or stolen goods without knowing. That is why you require a general bill of sale form to protect you from mischief by the seller.
So, what is a general bill of sale form? It is a legal document that functions like a receipt and usually issued by a seller of the property for exchange of cash or something else of value.
The form is useful to the new owner as proof of ownership. A general bill of sale form must be signed by the buyer and seller, making it legally binding. Since it is a valid contract, the seller also gains protection in case the buyer reverts to you when they become dissatisfied with the product. By signing, the buyer agrees to own the property on an as-is basis.
What does a general bill of sale form contain?
The form contains:
- Legal names of the buyer and seller as per the identification documents
- Contact information and physical address
- Date of the transaction and that of signing the bill
- Signature of legal witness
- Signature of buyer and seller
- Warranty signifying that the seller has the authorization to trade
- The monetary value of the property on sale
- Description of the property on sale
- Identification information
- Statement regarding the transfer of ownership
Now that you know the contents of a general bill of sale form, let us explore why it is essential.
General Bill of Sale Form
Here are a few:
- You need the general bill of sale form for evidence in case the party files a legal lawsuit in court.
- The document serves as proof of ownership. Similarly, the form protects buyers who get cheated into buying or selling stolen property.
- It also details critical aspects of the sale agreement, like the terms and warranty conditions.
- The form backs up bank transactions, which prevents fraud just like a General Release of Liability Form
Different Types of Bill of Sale Form
Bill of sale forms vary depending on the type of property on sale. There are many categories of the bill of sale forms you could use to transact.
In this article, we will take a look at:
- Auto bill of sale form
- Motor Vehicle bill of sale
- Used car bill of sale
- Firearm bill of sale
- Bill of sale for boat
Now let us, deep dive:
Auto Bill of Sale Form
An auto bill of sale is a contractual document that captures the agreement made between the seller and the buyer of a motor vehicle. The form shows the date the agreement is sealed and includes other details like price and motor vehicle registration number aka vehicle identification number
It also obligates the seller to provide specific details about the commonly used car that facilitates an authentic transaction. Additional details include the latest registration of the vehicle and the certificate of title.
For more transparency, the seller ought to disclose the odometer reading. It is important to note that sellers need to comply with the necessary certifications by the government. Smog certifications are mandatory for vehicles that are more than four years old.
In an auto bill of sale form, the seller presents warranties about the condition of the vehicle. He/she discharges himself by having sold the vehicle on an “as is” basis.
The form also states the timeline for the transfer and release of liability. Another critical part of the auto bill of sale form is the signing by the buyer and the seller. Note that the names must correspond to those in the identification documents of both parties.
Besides, the form indicates the mode of payment. Generally, sellers are flexible and will give a range of options like a blank check which could be self printed, cash, or money order. If there was a deposit, the amount of balance accompanied by a promissory note must go into the auto bill of sale form.
Vehicle Bill of Sale Form
The first thing to note is that a vehicle bill of sale is regulated at the state level, usually where the vehicle sale is happening. It is worth checking with your state before using any vehicle form because most states have a recommended vehicle bill of sale. Another thing to put in mind is the fact that not all states consider the vehicle form as a legal document. It could just be a personal record without a legal connotation.
The critical aspects of the vehicle bill of sale are the VIN, general description of the vehicle, and vehicle odometer reading. For validity, some states require notarization of the vehicle document. Otherwise, they prefer it for use for personal use.
Vehicle or vessel bill of sale forms have a place to specify whether the purchase is an ordinary sale or a gift. If it is a gift, the forms will require the buyer to state the relationship with the seller. The importance of this information is to minimize fraud.
Again, make sure that the vehicle form adheres to state bylaws to avoid running into trouble with authorities for using fake forms. Vehicle bills of sale are available for free on online platforms. But be sure to have it from a reputable source just like in the case of a Donation Receipt
The forms have made it easy for the seller to have tax reports of the vehicle. They have protection for selling a vehicle in the as-is condition preventing a lash back by the buyer in case something backfires.
For the buyer, it is an authentic proof of vehicle ownership. It indicates the date of transfer and the accompanying warranty information.
Point of note: A bill of sale is not final proof of vehicle ownership. Therefore, you must finalize the transfer to make sure that the ownership changes. But the good thing is that the document is legally binding and may be used to launch legal action.
Car Bill of Sale Form
Writing a bill of sale for your car is easy if your state provides a recommended form. Not every state specifies the form details, so you have to customize yours to fit your requirements.
Having a car bill of sale prevents misunderstanding between the seller and the buyer, especially when the latter becomes dissatisfied with the bought vehicle.
The first thing to do when preparing a car bill of sale is to check with your state website. A quick search on the internet will lead you to the vehicle department website of the state you are buying or selling the vehicle.
Each state has a set of rules governing a used car bill of sale. Some recommend them getting notarized, while some states have no specification at all.
Without a state-provided bill of sale download, you may still find many free templates online. In this article, we sample a few.
By signing a used vehicle bill of sale, the seller agrees to transfer all rights, title, and interests to the buyer. A form is a place for freeing the buyer from encumbrances. But if there is any, the seller must indicate it in the form.
Other details included in the used vehicle bill of sale are:
- Vehicle Body style
- Number of cylinders information
- Color of vehicle
- Mileage information of the vehicle
- License plate number information
- vehicle identification number (VIN) information
Firearm Bill of Sale Form
A firearm bill of sale may sound weird, but the truth is that it is very critical for both the buyer and the seller. The document memorializes a sale of a firearm. It could be a shotgun rifle or a handgun.
A Firearm bill of sale records details about the buyer and seller. It will contain:
- Name of buyer
- Name of seller
- Their driver license numbers information of seller and buyer
- Firearm information
Firearm details will include the serial number, caliber, price, the make, and any distinctive markings. A firearm bill of sale falls in two categories:
- Absolute bill of sale
- Conditional Bill of Sale
An absolute bill of sale confirms that a transaction happened, thus leading to a transfer of ownership. The unique thing about the absolute bill of sale is the fact there is no due amount after a purchase transaction completes. That means the buyer assumes ownerships without any strings attached.
For a conditional bill of sale, ownership is not absolute, and there are inherent conditions to fulfill. To explain a conditional bill of sale, let us use an example-When you buy a firearm using borrowed money, the ownership remains yours, but with default, the new owner has a right to repossess the gun.
The condition bill of sale requires the buyer to commit through presenting a promissory note. That way, the seller gets some assurance that payment will come at a specified later date. The option is useful when the payment mode accepts installment to pay.
A seller benefits by using a firearms bill of sale in several ways that include:
- Protection from liability in cases where the buyer was ineligible to hold a firearm
- Protection from a malicious buyer who wants to take advantage of the seller
- Reduction of penalties arising from an irregular sales
To a buyer, the firearms bill of sale:
- Makes it easy to clarify the origin in case the firearm to commit a crime
- It is useful if someone sells you a malfunctioned firearm.
- When accused of using the firearm in dates before the purchase of the firearm
The firearm bill of sale forms is relevant to different parties for different reasons. It is required when sold to family members or friends. Participants of gun forums like the craigslist forum need the form as proof of ownership of a gun.
Organizations dealing with firearms also find this form very useful. That is because it releases liability on their end at the moment when the firearm leaves their premise.
Bill of Sale for Boat
A bill of sale for boats comes into play when transferring a water vessel from one owner to another new owner. The good thing about this bill is that it itemizes the prices of each component. The main components are the trailers and motors.
The bill takes effect upon successful payment, accompanied by the delivery of a boat. It is relevant when conducting private or commercial transfers. The bill also applies to other watercraft vessels like kayaks, yachts, rowboats, tug boats, and canoes
There are many similarities to the bill of sales forms discussed before and the bill of sale for boats. Here is what is unique about the latter:
- The specifics include the hull ID, odometer reading i.e. odometer disclosure statement, title number, the year of manufacturer, and make and the make model of the boat.
- Another thing is the certificate of acknowledgment that indicates the state where the transaction happened.
Other details are common to all bills of sales forms. You will find the seller and buyer names and signatures, serial numbers, and prices of the boat.
The document is part of the requirements needed to register a boat. But be sure to consult with your state for all other requirements needed during the registration of vessels.
The bill applies to new and used boats. It also indicates the warranties provided by the seller. The form becomes valid once signed by the buyer, seller, and witness.
Often, the bill of sale for a boat determines the insurance of the boat. Insurance companies will only cover boat vessels with proper documentation. However, the primary purpose of having this kind of bill is for the protection of buyers from stolen boats.
The boat bill of sale is applicable for boat dealers, and craigslist offers. It also works when sold components of a boat, like trailers and motors.
A point of note: A bill of sale for boats releases liability from the seller by using classes that transfer the liability. A good example is an as-is sell clause, common for the different types of bills of sale. That means buyers accept liability in the condition that they buy a boat and cannot blame the seller if the boat doesn’t work as expected.
Bill of Sale Texas
In Texas, a bill of sale form is necessary to keep a paper trail for a motor vehicle sale. A bill of sale transfers liability for anything that happens as soon as the transfer becomes successful. A certificate of title cushions the buyer and seller against fraud and instances of misunderstanding in the state.
When selling a car in Texas, you must process the document immediately. The document is a protection in case a buyer causes an accident after assuming ownership of a purchased vehicle. It also acts as a receipt when sold a car as an individual.
It is mandatory to process a bill of sale in Texas because you could potentially lose your vehicle and not have money in return if the seller launches a complaint that they didn’t sell the vehicle. The details captured in a Texas bill of sales include those mentioned earlier.
The details contained in the BOS include:
- The VIN information
- Name of buyer
- Details of buyer
- Name of Seller
- Make Model description and information
- Description of the condition
- Price information
- Date of sales/ sold information to the buyer
Bill of Sale Florida
The state of Florida requires you to have a bill of sale template when selling personal property. When transferring a vehicle in the state, you must have the bill of sale, and it must be notarized. Whether you are buying or selling the car from an individual or dealership, the paper title must be in print.
Florida accepts electronic liens and titles, thus facilitating safer transactions. In the state, the electronic titles have an orderly database maintained by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
The bill of sale template for motor vehicles in Florida has a statute governing any motor vehicle sale. Anyone who has sold a personal property must adhere to section 319.24 of the statute laws. Authorized Service Providers have an article to refer to on the statute.
The Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles department implements an Electronic Lien and Titling System(ELT). There are numerous benefits to using the system in processing titles for motor vehicles.
Here are some of the benefits:
- Elimination of title theft
- Minimized need for bigger space for physical titles
- Lowered costs
- Enhanced customer service
- Minimal chances of title fraud
- Better lien satisfaction from the fast processing
- No need for more paper
Paper titles work better when selling a vehicle individually, but if you are doing it through a dealership, then there is no need for a physical bill of sale forms. Apart from motor vehicle bills of sale, Florida has the Horse Bill of sale.
What does the legal horse bill of sale entail?
A horse bill of sale is a legal document signifying the transfer of ownership of a horse from the seller to the buyer. Before completing the bill of sale, a health examination of the horse is pertinent-you do not want to buy a dying horse.
There is a provision to deposit an installment as you await the health results of a horse. The deposit reduces the total cost of the horse. Before buying or selling a horse, consider your budget, price, and health condition of the horse.
Here are a few things to look out for:
- Names of buyer and seller /owner
- Date of sales or other important date
- Description of the horse-the breed, gender, age, and other characteristics
- Purchase Deposit used
- Acknowledgment from the notary public to be used
Florida has Boat BOS as well. The bill of sale allows you to transfer the ownership of a boat through a legal means. Apart from the details of the price, and registration details of the boat, it also captures certification details.
Oregon DMV Bill of Sale
An Oregon DMV bill is inevitable if you are transferring a car from one party to another. Whether you are selling, sold, donating, or gifting someone with a car, a DMV bill of sale is pertinent.
What is an Oregon DMV bill of sale?
It is a legal document that confirms the legal motor vehicle sales template within the state of Oregon. Like the DMV bill of sale commonly used in Florida and Texas, the Oregon one contains similar details. It captures critical vehicle information together with the seller and buyer details.
The law requires that when buying or selling a car in Oregon, you must notify the DMV within ten days. Registration must be done within a 30-day time frame, commencing from the date of purchase. The difference with other states is that the Oregon DMV bill of sale does not require notarization.
How Do You Register a Vehicle in Oregon
The law requires every vehicle owner to register their vehicle with DMV failure to which you won’t operate on any state roadways. New residents must finalize title and registration works before using their vehicles within Oregon.
Here are the steps to register a vehicle in Oregon:
- Complete form 735-226 which is the application for title and registration
- Complete a bill of sale template used for Purchase
- Provide driver license information
- Provide Manufacturer Certificate of Origin
- Process lien release from the vehicle dealer
- Get smog certification for old vehicles
- Provide Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) for inspection
- Provide odometer reading of the to be sold vehicle
- Pay licensing, titling, and registration fees.
- Get a legal plate number
By following the above steps, you become Purchase compliant with the law.
Bill of Sale Georgia
A bill of sale in Georgia is available for use in the sale of the property. The document is applicable when selling animals, vehicles, and firearms. Other areas where a bill of sale template works is when an aircraft, boats, electronics furniture, and other home appliances are to be sold.
But the most common one is the motor vehicle bill of sale template. The BOS facilitates the transfer of the title and registration of a vehicle. If you are new to Georgia, you must register your motor vehicle within 30 days of arrival.
The process of registering a motor vehicle starts by initiating the process at the county tag office. Newer vehicles don’t require registration, only those made before 1985 or those without a title. Note that not all bills of sale require notarization, you may need to consult the statutes and other laws to know which ones need notarization.
The Georgia general and motor vehicle bill of sale is common in the state. The motor vehicle bill of sale is similar to those of Texas, Oregon, and Florida.
A general bill of sale applies to the sale of any property. For example, when a mountain bike is to be sold, you will use a general bill of sale.
With the mountain bike example, what should you expect to capture using a general bill of sale?
Check what it contains:
- A description of the bike you are going to Purchase
- The model
- The color
- The form of Purchase payment
- The date of sales
- Details of buyer or seller
- Conditions or warranties
- Signatures of both parties witnessed by a notary public
Then there is the Georgia bill of sale for boats. The document contains the description, model, hull ID, and the necessary disclosures that facilitate a smooth sales template.
Missouri Bill of Sale
The Missouri Department of Revenue provides a free and comprehensive bill of sale. With one form, you may capture details for different types of property to be sold. A typical form allows you to capture the sale of a motor vehicle, boat, outboard motor, and traded vehicle.
The form indicates any penalties for the transaction. The buyer and seller must sign, and it should include the signature of a notary public. Below is an example of a comprehensive available for use in Missouri.
Utah Bill of Sale
Utah State Tax Commission provides a simplified Bill of Sale form, which you may download from their website for free. The bill of sale is applicable for use when selling any automobile. You may use these rights reserved bill of sale for selling a light truck, motorcycle, trailer, boat, snowmobile, or off-highway vehicle.
The form records:
- Buyer and seller names
- The make/model of the vehicle
- Vehicle Identification Number VIN
- License number identification
Besides, the form includes a warranty for each sale. The essence is to protect the seller from claims of a buyer who may find the vehicle unsatisfactory. However, it is worth noting that the Utah bill of sale does not represent evidence of purchase.
Bill of Sale Utah
When selling property, the first thing that comes to mind is the bill of sale. However, not all the time, do you require a bill of sale, especially if the law doesn’t require you to process one.
So the big question beckons-do you require a bill of sale in Utah? The answer is a straight NO. You do not need a bill of sale in Utah to sell a motor vehicle. It serves as a document for a personal record.
The bill of sale provided by the Utah State Tax Commission gives credibility to a sales process. But you may only use the document when you already have a title, and the motor vehicle on sale is registered. Note that you will only drive for 30 days, after which the document becomes invalid.
Colorado Bill of Sale
In Colorado, a bill of sale isn’t a requirement for registering a motor vehicle. But that doesn’t mean a bill of sale is irrelevant. In the absence of a title, the bill of sale establishes ownership. But keep in mind that you may only use a bill of sale for the first 30 days after making a purchase.
A motor vehicle bill of sale is not the only type of form commonly used in Colorado. There are other bills like bills of sale for boats, guns, the general one.
The Colorado bill of sale for guns contains these details:
- Serial Number
- The driver license number of buyer and seller must be included
- Price of the gun in words and figures
Buyers and seller must make a disclosure, and though not a must, the gun bill of sale template may be notarized. Otherwise, it is only useful for rights reserved personal records.
Bill of sale Alabama
A free bill of sale is a requirement for trading property in Alabama. The Alabama Uniform Certificate of Title and Antitheft act requires that buyers and sellers of all vehicles, including those that need titling.
Alabama Department of Revenue does not compel buyers and sellers to use a bill of sale. But for the protection, it is imperative to sign a free bill of sale in the presence of a notary public or witnesses.
The good thing about a bill of sale used in Alabama is that you may handwrite the bill. So, in the absence of a place to edit the document, you may pre-print it and sign it at the seller location.
Another point to note is that Alabama doesn’t compel you to generate a seller bill of sale when buying a vehicle. But for insurance purposes, the bill of sale is proof of sale template for the seller and buyer.
Bill of Sale Colorado
As earlier discussed, it isn’t a requirement to produce a bill of sale when selling personal property in Colorado. However, the state provides a motor vehicle bill of sale that allows you to show it as evidence when paying for insurance. It is also essential in instances where the vehicle doesn’t have a title.
Below is an example of a motor vehicle bill of sale used by buyer or sellers in Colorado. Eforms has made the form-fillable.
Bill of Sale Louisiana
Louisiana state will require you to notarize a bill of sale form when purchasing a personal property. For motor vehicles, you should contact the Lousiana Office of Motor Vehicles. To sell a vehicle in the state, you must have a title and a notarized bill of sale.
Here is an example of a bill of sale in Lousiana:
Bill of Sale
As we come closer to the end of the article, we have some learnings from the different Bill of sales forms. We know by now that a bill of sale is a legally binding document that confirms a sale. You can adduce the document as evidence in court.
A bill of sale gives a description of the property on sale. It is proof of ownership and can be used to facilitate a transfer. The Bill of sale documents also shows the value of a property. And we know that the terms of the Bill of sale determine whether it is absolute or conditional.
How to write a bill of sale
Writing a bill of sale isn’t a complicated task. Many free downloadable forms on the internet will have you started. On our website, we provide a number of them you can pick and edit immediately.
To write a bill of sale don’t forget to include the following information:
- The names of the new owner and seller
- Descriptions of items including serial numbers, hull ids, color and more
- Warranties that bind a sale
- Price of the item
- Method of payment
- Promissory notes in case payment have pending dues
- Print the Bill legible enough for anyone to read without strain
- Ensure accuracy of information and signatures
- Keep a copy in case the original gets lost.
When selling personal property, a bill of sale form is an initial document that provides proof of ownership. These documents facilitate the processing of titles for motor vehicles, expedites insurance processing, and protects you from buying stolen items. The forms clear the air on the terms of payment and indicate the criteria for clearing pending payment.