Paperwork When Buying a Car in South Dakota
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Buying a vehicle from an individual instead of a dealer presents a few challenges.
For starters, you'll need to verify that there aren't any liens on the vehicle you're interested in buying. You can do this by taking a look at the title's lien release section. You'll need to get a lien release if there is an active lien, or else you could wind up in a legal mess.
Also, the lien release needs to be attached to the title, unless the county treasurer marks the release on the title.
Make sure that your title has been correctly assigned to you by the seller. Also, be sure that both you and the seller have filled in the "retail sale" section of the title.
If the vehicle is under nine years old, the odometer reading section of the title must be completed. If the seller knows that the odometer reading is inaccurate, they must indicate this on the title.
Now, if the vehicle is under seven years old, both the odometer reading section and the uniform damage disclosure sections must be filled out.
The disclosure section indicates if the vehicle has sustained at least $5,000 in damages due to an accident, or other type of single mishap. It doesn't matter whether the damage was fixed or not―it still needs to be reported.
You'll also need to have a completed bill of sale.
If you don't get your vehicle titled and registered within the time permitted, you'll pay $1 for every week you're late, up to a maximum of $50.
If you haven't received your title from the seller within 30 days of the purchase, file a complaint with the Division of Motor Vehicles at the address listed at the end of this section. Be sure to include a copy of the purchase form or bill of sale.
A bill of sale is necessary for registering and titling your vehicle. You can, if needed, conveniently download this form from our Bill of Sale page.
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