How To Get Title for ATV With Bill of Sale (Simple Answer 2023)

Many ATVs are privately bought and sold across the country each day.

But, you want to ensure you that you have all of the right information, so that down the line the police can’t take the new powersports vehicle from you in the event it is a stolen vehicle or deemed an illegal sale.

I have included templates, and an ATV buyer’s guide, and of course a detailed description of how to get a title for an ATV with a bill of sale form.

How to Get Title for ATV with Bill of Sale Contract

How To Get Title for ATV With Bill of Sale

Obtaining a title for an ATV (all terrain vehicle) using a bill of sale form is important not only for ensuring your legal ownership but also for meeting state and local requirements when you want to use the ATV on public land.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate this process.

1. Bill of Sale Basics

Ensure the bill of sale contains essential details:
– Date of the transaction
– Full names and addresses of both the buyer and seller
– Description of the ATV (including make, model, year, and VIN#)
– Sale price
– Signatures of both parties

2. Verify the ATV’s Status

Before proceeding, run the ATV’s VIN# through a local or national database to make sure it hasn’t been reported stolen. This step protects you and gives peace of mind.

3. Research State-specific Requirements

Each state in the U.S. has its rules regarding ATV titles. Check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) or equivalent agency to understand specific requirements and documentation needed.

4. Locate Previous Titles or Ownership Documents

Ideally, the seller should provide the ATV’s previous title or a Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin (MSO). However, if these documents are unavailable, a bill of sale might suffice in some jurisdictions.

5. Visit Your Local DMV

With your bill of sale and any other required documentation in hand, visit your local DMV. Some states may require the ATV to be present for a physical inspection.
Pay Applicable Fees:

Be prepared to pay any associated fees for the title application. Costs vary by state.

6. Wait for Processing

Once you’ve submitted all the necessary documents and fees, the DMV will process your application. If all is in order, you should receive your ATV’s title within a few weeks.

7. Consider Additional Protection:

While not always required, consider adding insurance to your ATV once it’s titled. This provides extra protection in case of accidents or theft.

8. Be Aware of Local Regulations

Some states or municipalities might have further requirements for ATVs, especially if you plan to use them on public roads or lands. Ensure you’re compliant with all local regulations to avoid potential legal issues.

9. Keep All Documents Safe

Once you’ve received your title, store it in a safe place along with the bill of sale and any other pertinent documents. These papers prove your legal ownership of the ATV and will be crucial if you decide to sell or transfer ownership in the future.

What is an ATV title?

An ATV title is basically the official paperwork, much like what you’d have for a car, which shouts out, “Hey! This person owns this four wheeler!”

It’s provided by the local Department of Motor Vehicles or a similar agency and establishes who the legal owner of the ATV is.

When I first looked into this, I imagined the title would only have the ATV’s details, but it goes beyond that. The title has the owner’s name and address – fairly straightforward stuff.

Then, there’s the Vehicle Identification Number, and other ATV specifics.

Now, here’s something I always recommend checking: the lien information.

If someone took out a loan to buy the four wheeler, the lender’s details will be right there on the title.

Basically, they’re saying, “I have a claim on this until the loan’s paid off.”

Odometer disclosures are less common on ATV titles compared to, say, car titles.

But, if you’re selling or buying an ATV, I advise always having the title on hand. It’s your golden ticket to proving ownership.

Trust me on this one!

If there’s still a loan on the ATV, the lender will typically hang onto the title papers.

Once it’s paid off, they send it over to the new owner.

I think of it as a rite of passage – once you have that title, you truly own that ATV!

What is a Bill of Sale?

A Bill of Sale is essentially a written document that records a transaction between two parties, typically a seller and a buyer.

This legal document serves as proof of transfer of ownership for an item, be it a car, an ATV, a piece of furniture, or any other tangible asset.

When I think about essential documents in sales transactions, the Bill of Sale is right at the top of the list!

Here’s what I’ve gathered from my understanding:

A standard Bill of Sale usually includes the following details:

  • Seller’s and Buyer’s Information: Basically, this would have the names, addresses, and sometimes contact information of both parties.
  • Description of the Item: It’s fairly important to be as detailed as possible here. For vehicles, this would typically include the make, model, year, color, and VIN.
  • Purchase Price: How much the item was sold for.
  • Date of Sale: This is the date when the transaction took place.
  • Signatures: Both the buyer and seller would sign, validating the transaction.

I advise that if you’re ever in a situation where you’re buying or selling something of value, always make sure you have a Bill of Sale.

It provides legal protection for both parties involved.

And trust me, if disputes ever arise about the sale or the condition of the item, this document can be a lifesaver!

Is a Bill of Sale Required?

For many sales transactions, especially casual ones between two individuals, a Bill of Sale might not be legally required.

But here’s the thing: I always recommend having one.

Why? Because it’s a great way to provide both the buyer and seller with a written record of the transaction.

It can protect both parties in case there’s ever a dispute about the sale.

Now, when it comes to selling or buying vehicles, including ATVs, boats, and cars, things get a bit more stringent.

In many jurisdictions, a Bill of Sale is required to transfer ownership and register the vehicle. Basically, it’s a vital piece of the puzzle in ensuring everything’s above board.

Bill of Sale Template

Here is a “make your own” Bill of sale template I put together. Or click this link to view the PDF version to print and use it yourself: Bill of sale PDF

how to get title for ATV with bill of sale

The Buying and Selling Process for ATVs

Buying and selling ATVs (All-Terrain Vehicles) is a process that demands attention to detail and knowledge of both the product and the market.

If you’re in the market to either buy or sell an ATV, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the process:

1. Research:

  • Buying: Understand the kind of ATV you want. Different models cater to different uses: recreation, racing, or utility work.
  • Selling: Investigate the current market value of your ATV based on its model, year, and condition.

2. Inspection and Preparation:

  • Buying: When considering a used ATV, inspect it thoroughly. Check for frame damage, tire wear, brake condition, and engine health. If possible, as the seller or original owner if you can take it for a test drive. You can also get I checked by a certified mechanic.
  • Selling: Clean your ATV, ensure it’s in good working condition, and consider making any minor repairs. A well-maintained ATV will fetch a higher price.

3. Documentation:

  • Buying: Ask for the title, bill of sale, and any maintenance records. Verify the VIN to ensure it’s not a reported stolen ATV.
  • Selling: Gather all relevant documents like the title, bill of sale, and maintenance records. You’ll provide these to the buyer.

4. Negotiation:

  • Buying: Based on your research and the condition of the ATV, negotiate a fair price. Don’t be afraid to walk away if the deal doesn’t feel right.
  • Selling: Be open to negotiation but have a minimum price in mind based on your ATV’s worth and market demand.

5. Payment:

  • Buying: Use secure methods for payment. Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. A cashier’s check or bank transfer might be safer.
  • Selling: Confirm the payment before handing over the ATV and its documents. Again, secure methods are advisable.

6. Transfer of Ownership:

  • Buying: Ensure that you receive the title (if applicable), a signed bill of sale, and any other relevant documentation. Register the ATV in your name and check if your state requires insurance.
  • Selling: Complete a bill of sale, which should include the ATV’s description, VIN, sale price, and both parties’ details. Sign over the title, if applicable.

7. Post Private Sale:

  • Buying: Get familiar with your ATV’s maintenance needs. Consider joining ATV communities or forums to connect with other enthusiasts and gather tips.
  • Selling: Remove any ads you might have posted online and inform any interested buyers that the ATV is no longer available.

8. Safety First:

  • Buying: If you’re new to ATVs, consider taking a safety course to learn the basics of operating and riding safely.
  • Selling: Remind the buyer about the importance of safety gear and safe riding practices.


To cap it off, the ATV trade requires a mix of research, meticulous inspection, and clear documentation.

Whether you’re on the buying or selling end, ensuring you’re well-prepared can make all the difference.

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