A Trailer Bill of Sale is a document that records the change in ownership of a trailer. Legally, a trailer is any non-motorized vehicle pulled by another vehicle.
What Is a Trailer Bill of Sale?
A Trailer Bill of Sale is a document that documents the transfer of ownership of a trailer vehicle from one individual to another. A bill of sale is often required by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to register the vehicle.
If you’re selling a trailer and other items (e.g., a boat and its motor), you can record the entire sale on a single bill of sale form.
Why You Need a Bill of Sale for a Trailer
Both the buyer and seller need a bill of sale for different reasons:
- If you’re buying a trailer, you need a bill of sale as proof of ownership and to register the trailer with the DMV.
- If you’re selling a trailer, you need a bill of sale to protect yourself if there’s a future dispute regarding the trailer’s ownership or condition.
How to Write & Use a Trailer Bill of Sale
Take these steps to complete your Trailer Bill of Sale.
Step 1: Gather details of the parties involved
Collect the information of all parties involved in the sale. This would be the buyer and the seller. Include their contact details such as their name, address, number, and even their email address if possible.
Step 2: Check state requirements
Your state may have specific requirements for transferring the title of your trailer. For example, Texas requires trailers with an empty weight of over 7,500 pounds to undergo a safety inspection before transfer.
Many states also require you to sign the bill of sale in the presence of adult witnesses or a notary public.
These requirements are typically listed on your state’s DMV website. If you have trouble finding the requirements online, call or visit your local DMV office.
Step 3 – Fill in Trailer information
Details include the trailer make, model, production year, empty weight, license plate number (if any), and Vehicle Identification Number.
Details of an example travel trailer:
- Make: Winnebago
- Model: Minnie Winnie 2108FBS
- Year: 2019
- Color: White
- Body Style: Travel Trailer
- Empty Weight: 3,900 lbs
You should also include information about the condition of the trailer. Refer to these options:
- Very Good
You can write down any additional information you feel is relevant to this section of the document.
Step 4 – Provide Terms of the Sale
In this section, you should provide details about how the sale is being made. For example, you need to specify whether the sale is a gift or not. If it is a gift, the relationship between the buyer and seller must be made clear.
Further information you should provide is the following:
- Unless otherwise indicated, the buyer will be buying the trailer “AS IS,” and the seller makes no warranty or guarantee. The buyer takes on all responsibility for the trailer once the sale is complete, including any repairs or maintenance that need to be made. However, the seller can provide exceptions to the “AS IS” condition and provide a warranty on all or a part of the trailer.
- Date of Sale
Step 5: Sign the form
Once the buyer and seller have agreed to all the terms in the bill of sale, both parties should sign the form.
Your state may require witness or notary signatures to validate the bill of sale.
Even if it’s not required, we recommend having a third party witness your signature and sign the document in case of a future dispute over the sale.
Step 6: File with the DMV
Usually, the buyer keeps the original bill of sale, and the seller gets a copy. You can also create two identical copies and have the buyer and seller sign both copies.
Depending on state requirements, both the buyer and seller may need to file the bill of sale with the DMV or other governmental agencies.
If only a trailer is sold, file the bill of sale with the DMV. If a boat and/or outboard motor is sold along with the trailer, another office may handle the transfer, such as a marine board or recreational agency.
You can find out how boats are registered in your state on DMV Boat Registration and Licenses.
Free Printable Trailer Bill of Sale Templates
The bill of sale template you need depends on whether you’re selling just a trailer of any kind or a trailer along with a boat and/or motor. If you want to fill it out yourself you can download our blank Trailer Bill of Sale in PDF or Word format.
Trailer Bill of Sale Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can register a trailer with a bill of sale. But in some states, the title of the trailer is also required. You should check your state requirements to determine which documents you need to register your trailer.
Yes, you can sell a trailer with just a bill of sale, and that document can be used as proof of ownership. However, certain states require you to have a Certificate of Title for a legal transfer of ownership.