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Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle

Last revision Last revision 20/03/2024
Formats FormatsWord and PDF
Size Size2 to 3 pages
Fill out the template

Last revisionLast revision: 20/03/2024

FormatsAvailable formats: Word and PDF

SizeSize: 2 to 3 pages

Fill out the template

What is a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

A Bill of Sale is a legal document that the seller usually gives to the buyer when selling property. Specifically, a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle is a document the seller gives to the buyer when the transaction involves a motor vehicle.

A bill of sale is a document for the buyer and is similar to an ownership deed. The document helps prove that ownership rests with the buyer after purchase.


What are the different types of Bills of Sale of Motor Vehicles?

There are two types of Bills of Sale of Motor Vehicles:

  • Certified: A certified vehicle is obtained when the seller brings the vehicle to a licensed mechanic to inspect its mechanical fitness based on the required legal standards of inspection. To prove the vehicle is certified, the mechanic provides a Safety Standards Certificate (each Province will have its own similar term).
  • As is: a vehicle sold as is means a licensed mechanic has not inspected the vehicle and the vehicle is not represented as being in a road worthy condition. Legally, licence plates may not be able to be changed on the vehicle without first obtaining a mechanic's safety certificate or without a special permit.


What is the most common type of Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

The most common type of Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle is an as is bill of sale. This means that the seller has not certified the vehicle before selling it and the bill of sale provides no warranties or assurances as to the vehicle's quality or fitness for purpose. In that case, the buyer will be responsible for inspecting the vehicle and ensuring that the vehicle meets their demands.


Is it mandatory to have a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

No. Having a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle isn't necessary in order to finalize the transaction.

Having a bill of sale is an important document that shows proof that the buyer now retains legitimate ownership of the vehicle.

Although the vehicle ownership may be changed and registered in the name of the buyer, having a bill of sale solidifies that the new registered owner is in fact the true owner and purchaser of the vehicle. A Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle may help prevent future misunderstandings or disputes.


What must a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle contain?

A Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle must contain:

  • The make of the vehicle;
  • The model of the vehicle;
  • The year of the vehicle;
  • The odometer reading;
  • The VIN number;
  • The purchase price; and
  • The method of delivery (such as pickup or drop-off).

Also, the Bill of Sale should contain conditions from the seller about title to the property, and the right to sell such property.


Who can sign a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

A buyer and seller may sign a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle. The signatories must be of majority age and not under a disability. The ages of majority are as follows:

  • Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan: 18 years old.
  • British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Yukon: 19 years old.

It is possible that the seller or the buyer may be business entities, such as:

  • Corporation: a corporation may buy or sell used equipment such as a tractor.
  • Partnership: a partnership is a form of business entity between two or more persons in business with a view to profit. The partnership may sell or buy property.
  • Other: other entities such as a trust may sell or buy property.


What has to be done once the Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle is ready?

The document must be filled out, signed by the seller and the buyer, and then given to the buyer in exchange for money. At the time of purchase, print out two copies, or sign electronically and forward copies by email, and sign each of them so that both parties have a copy of the bill of sale.

After the document is signed, the new owner will need to change the ownership of the vehicle. When the Buyer attends the provincial or territorial government office to change the vehicle ownership into their name, they must present the signed Bill of Sale to determine and pay any applicable sales taxes. The province or territory may simply utilize the fair market value of the vehicle. Once the sales taxes have been paid, the ownership will be changed from the seller's name to the buyer's name. The government may provide a new ownership document.


Which documents should be attached to a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

The Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle should accompany the existing ownership of the vehicle. This is a small piece of paper that identifies the owner and describes the vehicle.

The ownership will be required in order to change the name from the seller to the buyer at the provincial or territorial government office.


What are the costs involved in the finalization of a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

Finalizing the Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle itself will not incur additional fees. However, changing the ownership of the vehicle from the seller to the buyer at the provincial or territorial government office will require the payment of sales taxes, which is usually based on the fair market value of the vehicle. For instance, is vehicle value is is $5000.00 and the tax rate is 13%, the amount payable would be $650.00.


Which laws are applicable to a Bill of Sale of Motor Vehicle?

There are many laws in place governing the sale of vehicles. Consumer protection and sales of goods laws protect buyers from unscrupulous sellers with implied conditions that generally can't be waived unless privately sold as is, which still has exceptions. These implied conditions include the buyer obtaining a vehicle free from liens, conforming to the description, and more.

Many jurisdictions require sellers to provide buyers with a Used Vehicle Information Package. Furthermore, under the Canada Weights and Measures Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. W-6), it is an offence to alter a vehicle's odometer. Some pieces of legislation on consumer protection include the following:

  • Ontario: Consumer Protection Act, 2002, S.O. 2002, c. 30, Sched. A and the Sale of Goods Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. S.1
  • Alberta: Consumer Protection Act, RSA 2000, c C-26.3 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSA 2000, c S-2
  • British Columbia: Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act, SBC 2004, c 2 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSBC 1996, c 410
  • Manitoba: Consumer Protection Act, CCSM c C200 and the The Sale of Goods Act, CCSM c S10
  • Saskatchewan: The Consumer Protection and Business Practices Act, SS 2013, c C-30.2 and the The Sale of Goods Act, RSS 1978, c S-1
  • Quebec: Consumer Protection Act, CQLR c P-40.1
  • New Brunswick: Consumer Product Warranty and Liability Act, SNB 1978, c C-18.1 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSNB 2016, c 110
  • Nova Scotia: Consumer Protection Act, RSNS 1989, c 92 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSNS 1989, c 408
  • Prince Edward Island: Consumer Protection Act, RSPEI 1988, c C-19 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSPEI 1988, c S-1
  • Yukon: Consumers Protection Act, RSY 2002, c 40 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSY 2002, c 198
  • Nunavut: Consumer Protection Act, RSNWT (Nu) 1988, c C-17 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSNWT (Nu) 1988, c S-2
  • Northwest Territories: Consumer Protection Act, RSNWT 1988, c C-17 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSNWT 1988, c S-2
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: Consumer Protection and Business Practices Act, SNL 2009, c C-31.1 and the Sale of Goods Act, RSNL 1990, c S-6


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