Imagine buying a used car, and signing a completed free bill of sale form in Louisiana prepared by the previous owner. The next morning you have the sheriff at your door for an enquiry related to the car! Sounds scary right!
Well, no need to worry as the Louisiana auto bill of sale is there to protect you.
Bill of Sale is a legal document that validates ownership of an asset/personal property from one owner to another. This document is proof of a seller’s voluntary intention to hand over the ownership of an item in lieu of some amount or under certain conditions. Besides cars, this document can also be used to transfer ownership rights for items like horses, firearms, furniture, boats, etc.
As a legal instrument, a BOS is used in court as evidence. To initiate its use, the seller needs to draw the BOS and fill in the details, like; details of the item on sale, information about the buyer, etc. So, to protect interests and have a legal clean-chit for ownership of goods and motor vehicles, you must create an appropriate type of BOS matching with what you are selling.
You must note that the state of Louisiana recommends signing the BOS in the presence of notary public.
Conditions to complete BOS for motor vehicles in Louisiana:
While selling a used or new car, you can only transfer your vehicle ownership by filling out and signing a BOS for motor vehicles. This document ensures you are not forced to pay for the tickets if buyer abandons the car, fails to pay due to the government, or register the vehicle within the allotted time. Here is all the information required to make the document valid.
Seller’s and buyer’s information: Since a BOS is a legal channel to transfer the ownership of a motor vehicle, it must consist of details like; the full legal names of both the parties. It must also have the state ID numbers or the driver’s license numbers of the buyer and the seller, complete physical and mailing addresses, etc. An ID number or the license number is vital to prove the parties involved in the transaction, in case a dispute arises.
The description of the motor vehicle on sale: You can only prove your ownership in one way, i.e., by describing the attributes of the article or vehicle. You must highlight the vehicle’s identification number, year of making, model, colour, and other features specifying the car on sale. Any serial or registration numbers of the motorcar or its parts need to be highlighted.
It’s purchase price: If the car is sold for cash or is traded for something else, the deal must be stated explicitly in the BOS. If it is a trade, what the seller is getting in place of the car and is there a mutual agreement? If it is sold for cash, how much amount, the seller is accepting for the car? Once the price is mutually agreed upon by both the parties, the seller must state the amount in writing, and then in numbers. The date or the expected date of payment must be included in the document.
Odometer readings: To prove your disclosures about all details and information provided under the car’s mileage, you need to note down the exact number/reading from the odometer at the time of sale. If the motor vehicle is less than ten years old, then an odometer disclosure statement is compulsory.
Seller’s disclosure: The document must state the seller’s disclosure about the validation of information and facts about the motor vehicle on sale, including any defects. By signing the disclosure, the seller promises that the information is accurate to the best of their knowledge.
Don’t forget to keep a copy of Louisiana auto bill of sale after notarization.