In the State of Washington you need to complete a Bill of Sale Form when buying or selling a vehicle. Below you’ll find details about the necessary steps for buying or selling your vehicle.
You need to complete all necessary forms – Vehicle/Vessel Bill of Sale – Completed by you and the seller, enter sale price – this is used to calculate the use tax or enter zero if it’s a gift or inheritance.
Sign the Vehicle Certificate of Ownership (Title) Application in front of a notary public, or licensing agent at an office.
Selling a vehicle:
1. Sign the vehicle title and give it to the buyer to release your interest in the vehicle.
2. File a Report of Sale within 21 business days of the sale with the Department of Licensing to document the sale online at dol.wa.gov, use your License express account, in person or mail this form to your local vehicle licensing office or county auditor – fees apply.
Mail a Vehicle report of sale form to a vehicle licensing location. After you’ve filed keep a copy for your records. If you need a copy, submit a Vehicle Record Request and fee. If you end up keeping the vehicle, visit a vehicle licensing location to have the report of sale deleted.
Buying a vehicle:
1. Complete a Vehicle Certificate of Title Application (TD-420-001) within 15 calendar days of purchasing the vehicle
to avoid paying a penalty.
2. Take the signed title certificate and completed title application to any vehicle licensing office and pay the required fees and taxes.
Whenever you sell or give up ownership of a vehicle (including cars, trucks, motorcycles, registered off-road vehicles, and trailers), file a report of sale so you’re not held liable for any tolling bills, towing charges, or civil and criminal liabilities incurred by the new owner. The new owner is responsible for transferring the title!
File a report of sale any time you Sell; Privately; On consignment, or Out of state (Must have a WA license plate); Trade to a private party or dealer; Gift; Donate; Give to a wrecking yard; Turn over to an insurance company, or Dispose of your vehicle!
Make sure everything is correct before you file! If you find an error after you’ve filed, you’ll have to visit a vehicle licensing location to explain the error. The report will be deleted and you’ll need to file another one.
You should file within 21 days. There’s no late fee for filing after 21 days, but you may be held liable for any financial, criminal or civil liabilities that the new owner may incur. It’s in your best interest to file as soon as possible.
For more information go to Washington State Department of Licensing (DOL).
With a strong commitment to great service, Washington State Department of Licensing advances public safety and consumer protection through licensing, regulation and education, and collects revenue that supports the state’s transportation system.
Every year, Washington State Department of Licensing – collects over $3 billion in gross revenue, issues about 6.6 million vehicle tab renewal notices, including over 628,000 by e-mail, collects nearly $1.29 billion in fuel tax revenue, issue or replace about 20,500 special design license plates and about 6,500 personalized plates, issue about 1,000 original vehicle dealer licenses, and renew about 3,600 vehicle dealer licenses and processes about 90,000 destroyed vehicle reports, including over 78,000 over the Internet.