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  • Bill of Sale in Arkansas

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    Introduction

    A bill of sale is a document that records transaction details; generally, these transactions involve the transfer of personal property. For purposes of the Arkansas Office of Motor Vehicle (OMV), “personal property” means “motor vehicles.”

    Please note that a bill of sale does not replace a title transfer; rather, it is a document that proves that a transaction took place, and shows the details of the buyer purchasing the vehicle from the seller. You must still complete a title transfer during any sale of a vehicle between two parties.

    Arkansas Bill of Sale

    The AR OMV will accept a completed title in place of a bill of sale form; however, the OMV requires a bill of sale if:

    • You’re the seller and want to apply for a sales tax credit (see below).
    • You’re the buyer and there’s no room on the current title for the seller to sign the vehicle over to you.

    Arkansas provides a state-approved printable Bill of Sale, but whether you use the bill of sale form or the back of the title, DFA agents stress the importance of including:

    • Both the seller’s and the buyer’s names, addresses, and signatures.
    • The vehicle’s make, model, and year.
    • The vehicle identification number. Refer to Locate the Vehicle Identification Number if you need help.
    • The sell date.
    • The price paid.

    Odometer Disclosure Statements

    Whether you use the back of the car title or the OMV bill of sale form, you must record the odometer reading.

    You can record the odometer reading:

    • On the back of the title, in the “Assignment of Title” section.
    • On the bill of sale form, in the final section above the signature boxes.

    When to Use a Bill of Sale

    Seller: Sales Tax Credit

    You must have a bill of sale if you want to apply for a sales tax credit.

    A sales tax credit is only applicable if you plan to register a newly acquired vehicle to replace the vehicle you sold within 45 days before or after you acquire the vehicle. For example, you can’t get a sales tax credit for a vehicle you bought last year, or one you plan to buy in a few months.

    NOTE: Even if you aren’t applying for a sales tax credit, use a bill of sale for your own records. Completing the title will suffice, but the title goes with the buyer. Having a bill of sale keeps important transaction details with you.

    Get additional information about fees, taxes, and credits at Arkansas Car Registration.

    Buyer: Title and Registration

    When you title and register a used car, you will need a completed title. You can supplement―but not replace―that title with a completed bill of sale.

    The OMV will accept a completed title in place of a vehicle bill of sale, as long as the title includes all the required information. (See “Arkansas Bill of Sale” above.) Again, with or without the bill of sale, you must have the completed title.

    The state-approved bill of sale form includes spaces for all of that information, and completing one:

    • Ensures you have backup paperwork, in case you or the seller make a mistake or leave something off the title.
    • Provides information not required on the title, such as the seller’s telephone number.

    See “Additional Car Buying Tips” below for more information about buying a used car.

    Salvage Vehicles and Bills of Sale

    The OMV doesn’t require a salvage vehicle bill of sale for reconstructed vehicles, but it does want to know where you obtained every part you used to reconstruct the vehicle.

    Before you can title and register a salvaged vehicle, you must complete an Affidavit of Reconstruction for a Salvage Motor Vehicle.

    The affidavit includes space for you to record:

    • Each part you used.
    • Whether that part was repaired or replaced.
    • The VIN of every vehicle from which you obtained the parts.

    Print the Affidavit of Reconstruction of Salvage Motor Vehicle and record this information as you purchase and replace the parts. You might also keep each receipt for your records.

    Learn more at our guide on Salvaged Vehicles.

    Additional Car Buying Tips

    Below we’ve provided additional tips and requirements you’ll need once you buy or sell a used car; however be sure to visit our guides for:

    Seller Requirements

    • Properly complete the title. The buyer needs this to title and register the vehicle.
    • Hand over the title. This is proof the buyer now owns the vehicle, and also releases you from liability.
    • Remove your license plate. Plates stay with the person, not the vehicle.
    • Apply for your sales tax credit 45 days before or after buying another vehicle (if applicable).

    Buyer Requirements

    • Don’t accept a bill of sale in place of a title. The OMV will accept a properly completed title in place of a bill of sale, but it will not accept a bill of sale in place of a title.
    • Ask to see the seller’s identification. Make sure the names on the ID card and the title match.
    • Make sure you and the seller have properly completed the title. Check that the make, model, and year are accurate, and look to see if the vehicle identification number on the title matches the VIN on the vehicle. Also, look at the physical odometer and make sure the reading is the same on the title.
    • Make sure everyone who needs to sign the title does so. Two names separated by “OR” means either party can sign the title, but “AND” and “AND/OR” means both parties must sign the title.
    • You have 30 calendar days from the date of purchase to title and register the vehicle. Our Arkansas car registration section explains everything you’ll need, but know that if you plan to switch your registration and license plate from another vehicle to your newly purchased vehicle, you must bring your current registration certificate.
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