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  • Paperwork When Selling a Car in Wisconsin

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    Required Paperwork

    Before accepting payment from the buyer for your car, be sure that all of the paperwork is in order. This includes:

    • The vehicle's title. You CANNOT sell a car without a title in your name. When handing over the title, be sure to include the odometer reading, price, brand disclosure (if applicable), the buyer's name and address, the date and your signature.
    • A lien release document (if applicable).

    You must remove the plates from the vehicle, unless it's a truck registered at 10,000 lbs or more, a farm truck registered at 16,000 lbs or more, a moped, a trailer or a recreational vehicle trailer. In these instances the plates stay with the vehicle. If you do remove the plates, you can transfer them to another vehicle you own.

    NOTE: Though not mandatory, the Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) recommends creating a bill of sale for your records. It also advises photocopying both sides of the title.

    Selling a Car Without a Title

    You cannot sell a vehicle without a title; it's your responsibility to produce the title.

    If you can't find the title, request a replacement title online. Once you have the title, you'll sign the document over to the buyer.

    • Your account will be charged a $20 application fee and an online convenience fee of $.50.
    • You should receive the replacement title within 10 business days.

    Selling a Car Without Registration

    While you're not required to give the registration paperwork to the buyer, doing so can help facilitate the sale by showing the potential buyer that all your records are in order.

    Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability

    You are not obligated to notify the DMV of your sale.

    Bill of Sale

    Though a bill of sale is not mandatory, the state advises keeping a copy for your files. You can download a form from our Bill of Sale page.

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