Without knowing what state you live in it’s hard to determine if you need a bill of sale or not. Many states require a bill of sale upon registering a vehicle while many others do not. Responsible car buyers should check their state’s DMV website or contact the DMV directly via phone in order to figure out if a bill of sale is necessary.
Regardless if the state requires you to have a bill of sale when you register the car it could be a benefit to you to have one anyway. A bill of sale is a legal document stating specifically the property being bought or sold in the transaction and also stipulates some other parts of the transaction. One important section that all bill of sales should have is an “as is clause”. An “as is clause” makes sure that both parties in the agreement understand that the piece of property being sold cannot be returned for any reason. A good “as is clause” makes sure that both parties have acknowledged the different details of the property and agree that once the transaction is final there is no way to reverse it.
Many other states provide their own bill of sale to the public. You should use the bill of sale that is provided by the DMV in order to avoid any confusion at the DMV office when you register the vehicle. The problem with the bill of sales provided by the DMV is that they don’t provide an “as is clause”. The way around this is to have both parties in the transaction to sign both the DMV’s bill of sale as well as your own bill of sale which includes an “as is clause”.
All in all you check with your local state DMV to see if a bill of sale is necessary to register your vehicle. If it is required then ask the DMV if they can provide you with a bill of sale form. Whether they provide you with a bill of sale or not you should generate an additional bill of sale which include an “as is clause” and have both documents signed by both parties in the transaction. It’s better to be safe than sorry, cover your bases and always use a bill of sale with an “as is clause”.