Paperwork When Selling a Car in Florida

Paperwork Required to Sell Your Car in Florida

Selling your used car in Florida shouldn't be a pain—not as long as you go about it strategically and ensure that you're well-versed in the FL Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) regulations. We'll break all that down right here, so let's get the ball rolling!

Selling a Vehicle in Florida

The purpose of this page is to briefly outline the process of selling a car and to inform you of the necessary paperwork. For a more detailed description of the process, please refer to our comprehensive Guide to Selling Your Car. It includes essential details on how to evaluate your vehicle's worth and thereby come up with a fair selling price. It also gives you plenty of tips on how to advertise to buyers through different channels, and how to boost your chances of locking down a good deal.

Once you've connected with someone committed to buying your car, you'll sign off on the title transfer and remove the license plate—there's not much more to it!

Required Documents in Florida

To sell your car in Florida, you'll complete the “ Transfer of Title by Seller" section on the front of your state car title certificate.

All such certificates issued in Florida after February 1983, include a space for recording the current vehicle mileage. Marking it down fulfills the odometer disclosure requirements for the purchase, certifying that you and the buyer both clearly agree on the car's mileage. The buyer needs that mileage reading in order to complete his or her title application with the FL DHSMV.
Some car owners maintain their Florida titles electronically, which the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles offers as a service to help owners from misplacing their titles or having them stolen and then having to pay for replacements. If you have an electronically maintained title, you'll have to make a request for a paper copy of the title to be printed in order to transfer ownership of the car to the buyer.

You might also consider providing a bill of sale to summarize the transaction.

Duplicate Title in Florida

If you're missing your car title, or if it's been destroyed or damaged beyond acceptability, you'll need to get your hands on a duplicate title to complete the vehicle sale.

To obtain a replacement, head for your FL county tax collector's office and provide your current registration as well as proper identification.

For more information, visit our Replacing a Lost Title in Florida page.

Duplicate Registration in Florida

If your vehicle registration is missing, damaged, or destroyed, you can request a duplicate registration online at the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles website.

For more information, visit our page about Replacing a Lost Registration in Florida.

FL Vehicle History Reports

As you go about selling a car in Florida, you'll definitely want to be aware of vehicle history reports, which many used-car shoppers request in order to evaluate a particular car's background. The report includes records of accidents, thefts, odometer fraud, and other critical information.

You can read more about such reports and even order your own on our Vehicle History Reports page. Check it out so you thoroughly understand the kind of information people might be obtaining about your vehicle and how they're using it to decide on a purchase.

Transferring License Plates After a Sale

Before you sell your vehicle, make sure to remove the license plates. The plates stay with you, the former owner, rather than remaining with the car itself. You can then transfer the registration and the plate to another vehicle, or surrender it to the Florida DHSMV at a county tax collector's office.

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