Laws for Selling a Car
Unfortunately, selling a car isn’t as simple as selling a trinket at a garage sale. You can’t simply slap a “for sale” sign in front of it and waiting for a buyer to come and hand over a pile of cash. There are laws r
egarding car sales that must be followed.
The laws surrounding car sales vary by state. In some states, for example, sellers may be required to show that they have valid registration for the vehicle in question, whereas other states make this a matter of choice.
Even the seemingly simple and straightforward act of selling your car is not immune from the red tape of bureaucracy. When your car sells, you will have to transfer its title to the buyer. This is most often performed by both parties filling out the required information on the back of the title. In most states, law dictates that the paper must then be signed and witnessed by a notary public. It is important to diligently check for any mistakes because this can render the car title worthless. A duplicate may be requested, but this makes things take a lot more time.
The act of placing a car for sale that is parked on the street, public parking lot or local business without being a licensed car dealer is known as curbstoning. This is a popular method used by people who wish to sell several vehicles while avoiding the necessary licensure process and requirements. By leaving the car someplace other than their residence, these people often hope to make themselves and their transaction harder to locate should something run afoul with the car.
It’s not a great idea to start selling used cars without first acquiring your dealership license. In most states, there are laws that prevent unlicensed individuals from legally selling more than one or two cars annually. Anyone who tries to work around such laws leave themselves vulnerable to prosecution and possibly even jail time and asset seizure. A license may also be required if you wish to act as a salesperson on behalf of a dealer.
Receipts are helpful in the event that something should go wrong with your item and you need to return it. Those for cars are no different. Most states will require that you provide the buyer with a bill of sale that shows the car’s exact purchase price. It is advised that you keep a copy for yourself and give the buyer the original.