About bills of sale

Before you purchase a vehicle, a trailer, a boat, a snowmobile or an ATV, make sure that you can receive acceptable proof of ownership. Without it you can have difficulties when you go to register the vehicle, get a title certificate or transferable registration in your name.

Proof of ownership normally includes a bill of sale (in addition to a 'Retail Certificate of Sale' (MV-50) if purchased from a dealer, or a 'Certificate of Title' (MV-999) for private sales). The seller and the buyer complete the bill of sale. 

You can use the Vehicle Bill of Sale (pdf) (MV-912).


What information is included on a bill of sale?

An acceptable bill of sale includes all of this information

  • year and make of the vehicle, boat, snowmobile or ATV
  • vehicle identification number (VIN) or the hull identification number (HIN)
  • date of the sale
  • purchase price
  • names and signatures of the buyer and the seller

The buyer and seller can make photocopies of the bill of sale to keep in their records. The new owner must give the original bill of sale to the DMV with the other required proofs of ownership. A bill of sale is not an acceptable proof of ownership without other proofs.


Gifted vehicle

If the vehicle is transferred as a gift, indicate this on the bill of sale and indicate that the purchase price is '$0.' You must also indicate the vehicle is a gift on a Statement of Transaction {Sales Tax Form} (pdf)  (at NY State Department of Tax and Finance) (DTF-802).

Note: Regardless of presenting a bill of sale, the seller or donor MUST also complete Section 6, on page 2, of the DTF-802 if:

  • the motor vehicle is a gift or is sold below fair market value to a person other than a spouse, parent, child, stepparent, or stepchild; or
  • the trailer, ATV, boat, boat/trailer combination, or snowmobile is a gift, or is sold below fair market value


More information

Read the DMV brochures, Let the Buyer Be Aware, and Q&A About Your Title Certificate.