How Do I Write A Bill Of Sale For A Car?

When it comes to selling a vehicle in Colorado, crafting a comprehensive bill of sale is a crucial step in the process. This document not only serves as a receipt for the transaction but also provides legal protection for both the buyer and the seller. Understanding How Do I Write A Bill Of Sale For A Car? is essential for anyone looking to conduct a vehicle sale smoothly and efficiently.

Essential Information to Include

A bill of sale for a car in Colorado must contain specific pieces of information to be considered valid. It should clearly list the full names and addresses of both the buyer and the seller. The vehicle’s description is paramount, including the make, model, year, VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), and the odometer reading at the time of sale. Pricing details, including the sale price and any applicable taxes or fees, should be explicitly stated. Additionally, the date of the sale and signatures from both parties are required to authenticate the document.

  1. Full Names and Addresses of both the buyer and the seller.
  2. Vehicle Description, including make, model, year, and VIN (Vehicle Identification Number).
  3. Odometer Reading at the time of sale.
  4. Sale Price and any additional applicable taxes or fees.
  5. Date of Sale to document when the transaction took place.
  6. Signatures of both the buyer and the seller to authenticate the document.
  7. Payment Terms, if applicable, including payment method and schedule.
  8. Notarization if required by Colorado law, especially for vehicles titled out of state.
  9. Emission Information, depending on county requirements in Colorado.
  10. Additional Terms or Conditions of the sale, such as warranty information or “as-is” status.

Legal Requirements in Colorado

In Colorado, the bill of sale must meet certain legal requirements to be recognized as a valid document. It’s important to note that Colorado requires the bill of sale to be notarized if it is used to support the application for a title when the vehicle is currently titled in another state. Including the vehicle’s emission information might also be necessary, depending on the county in which the transaction takes place. Checking the latest local regulations can ensure compliance with all state-specific requirements.

  1. Notarization Required for Out-of-State Titles: If the vehicle is currently titled in another state, the bill of sale must be notarized to support the application for a Colorado title.
  2. Emission Inspection Information: Depending on the county, emission inspection certification might be required to be included or referenced in the bill of sale.
  3. VIN Verification: For vehicles coming from out of state, Colorado may require a VIN verification to be completed and attached with the application for title.
  4. Odometer Disclosure: Colorado law requires that the bill of sale include an accurate odometer reading for vehicles less than ten years old to prevent odometer fraud.
  5. Seller’s Notification: The seller must notify the Colorado Department of Revenue that the vehicle has been sold. This is typically done through a specific form or online process.
  6. Sales Tax Compliance: The bill of sale must accurately reflect the sale price, as this is used to calculate the sales tax owed to the state of Colorado.
  7. Proper Identification: Both parties involved in the transaction should be properly identified in the bill of sale with their full legal names and addresses to comply with Colorado laws.
  8. Clear Title: The seller must ensure that the vehicle’s title is clear of any liens and is properly transferred to the buyer, accompanied by the bill of sale.
  9. Registration Requirements: The buyer must use the bill of sale to register the vehicle in their name at a Colorado DMV office within a specific timeframe after purchase.

Benefits of a Well-Written Bill of Sale

A well-drafted bill of sale provides numerous benefits beyond just being a purchase receipt. It acts as a legal record that can protect the seller in the event of future disputes over ownership, liability, or condition of the vehicle. For the buyer, it serves as proof of ownership transfer and can be used for registration and titling purposes. Ensuring that all information is accurate and complete can save both parties time and prevent legal complications down the line.

Steps to Drafting Your Bill of Sale

  1. Begin with Basic Information: Start by writing down the names, addresses, and contact information of both the buyer and the seller.
  2. Describe the Vehicle: Include a detailed description of the car being sold. The VIN, make, model, year, and odometer reading are crucial for identification.
  3. State the Sale Details: Clearly outline the sale price, any additional fees, and the total cost. Mention the payment method and any terms related to it.
  4. Date and Signatures: Ensure that the document is dated and signed by both parties. If required, have the document notarized to meet Colorado’s legal standards.
  5. Include Any Additional Agreements: If there are any additional terms or conditions associated with the sale, such as warranties or “as-is” sale agreements, include them in this section.

Example Bill Of Sale For A Car

Seller Information:

  • Name: John A. Doe
  • Address: 1234 Pine Street, Denver, CO 80203
  • Phone Number: (555) 123-4567

Buyer Information:

  • Name: Jane B. Smith
  • Address: 5678 Oak Avenue, Boulder, CO 80301
  • Phone Number: (555) 765-4321

Vehicle Information:

  • Make: Toyota
  • Model: Camry
  • Year: 2018
  • VIN: 1HGBH41JXMN109186
  • Odometer Reading: 45,000 miles

Sale Information:

  • Sale Date: February 20, 2024
  • Sale Price: $15,000
  • Taxes and Fees: $450 (if applicable)
  • Total Amount: $15,450
  • Payment Method: Cash

Additional Terms: The vehicle is sold “as is,” without any warranty expressed or implied. The seller disclaims any warranty as to the condition or working order of the vehicle. The buyer accepts full responsibility for the vehicle and its maintenance from the date of sale forward.


  • Seller’s Signature: ___________________________ Date: ___________
  • Buyer’s Signature: ____________________________ Date: ___________

Notarization (If Required): This document was acknowledged before me on this ___ day of ____________, 2024, by John A. Doe and Jane B. Smith.

Notary Public: ___________________________

My Commission Expires: _________________


Finalizing the Sale

Once the bill of sale is completed, it’s crucial for both the seller and the buyer to keep a copy for their records. The seller should also ensure that they complete any necessary notifications of sale, which may include submitting a Notice of Sale or Transfer to the Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles. This step is vital for releasing the seller from liability for the vehicle.

In conclusion, writing a bill of sale for a car involves detailing the transaction in a manner that meets legal standards and provides protection for both parties. By following the outlined steps and ensuring that all required information is included, sellers in Colorado can facilitate a smooth and legally sound vehicle sale.