West Virginia Bill of Sale

You should have a bill of sale if you’re transferring ownership of a boat, car, or firearm in West Virginia. Learn more about what a bill of sale is and how to draft one that will work.

West Virginia Bill of Sale Forms by Type

Important Terms for a Bill of Sale

  • Seller: A bill of sale should include the primary seller’s information, such as name and address, as well as the information of any additional sellers.
  • Buyer: The person taking ownership of the asset is the primary buyer. The bill of sale should include their name and address, along with any additional buyers’ information.
  • Sales tax: If a sold item is subject to sales tax, the bill of sale should include how much sales tax should be paid and whether or not sales tax is included in the price. 
  • Property: The asset that’s being transferred is the “property.” The bill of sale should list the date of transfer and a description of the property for identification. 
  • Property location: This is the property’s whereabouts, such as a county or state. Disclosing this information is important if the property is in another state.
  • Witness information: Some bills of sale must be witnessed to be legally binding. The witness can be a notary public or a third party agreed upon by both buyer and seller.
  • As-is: If a bill of sale lists the item as being sold “as-is,” then the buyer agrees to buy the item in its current state with no holds on the seller. 
  • Gift: For particularly large or expensive presents, a gift bill of sale can help all parties file taxes properly during the next year.
  • Certification/Signature: All parties involved must sign a bill of sale for it to be legally binding. Physical signatures are always valid. Digital signatures are valid if they are processed through a certified digital signature provider such as PandaDoc.

1. West Virginia Bill of Sale Requirements

Using a bill of sale is always a good idea. Sometimes, it’s a legal requirement. In West Virginia, a bill of sale is required if you’re selling or purchasing a boat, mobile home, or motor vehicle. You can use document templates provided by the state or a company like PandaDoc, or you can draft your own. 

Why Use a Bill of Sale?

Beyond legal requirements, a bill of sale offers multiple benefits. Buyers receive proof of ownership, while sellers are protected from certain liabilities. Both parties can present the bill of sale when faced with legal disputes after the transaction is complete.

Additional Considerations

Language Requirements

You can draft a bill of sale in any language. However, the government of West Virginia only offers bills of sale in English. You can work with a state-certified interpreter to get your bill of sale translated. Reach out to the Division of Education, Training, and Access to Justice to request legal translation services

Number of Copies

Having a bill of sale to give to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is important if you’re buying a boat, trailer, or motor vehicle. These transactions should involve three copies of the bill of sale: one each for the buyer, seller, and DMV. 

Otherwise, it’s enough for the buyer and the seller to each keep a copy.

Junk Vehicles

Any car in West Virginia that is declared “totaled” must have a salvage title before it can be repaired. After it has been repaired, the title will carry a permanent “brand” stating that the car has been reconstructed. 

Sellers are obliged to disclose the above information to buyers. The practice is meant to protect the latter from unknowingly buying a vehicle that could be uninsurable.

After Purchasing a Vehicle

You need more than a bill of sale to transfer ownership of a car in West Virginia. Whether you’re selling or buying, you’ll need to provide other documents to make the transfer of ownership official.

If You’re the Seller

In West Virginia, a vehicle seller must fill out the back of the title with the buyer’s information, then give the document to the buyer along with the completed bill of sale. If the original title has been lost or destroyed, the seller can apply for a replacement by filling out an Affidavit of Duplicate Title for a Vehicle or Watercraft (Form DMV-4-TR) and submitting it to the DMV.

The seller should also fill out a lien release — if applicable — and complete the odometer disclosure statement on the title if the vehicle is less than 10 years old. 

If You’re the Buyer

Buyers have 30 days to title and register new vehicles in West Virginia before facing late fees. To complete the registration process, buyers must provide:

  • Vehicle title
  • Owner’s identification and proof of residence
  • Proof of insurance
  • Notarized bill of sale
  • Copies of both the buyer’s and the seller’s driver’s licenses
  • Registration and titling fees

The buyer must also pay sales tax based on the purchase price of the vehicle or the relevant National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Clean Loan Book Value. 

2. West Virginia Car (Vehicle) Bill of Sale 

In West Virginia, car ownership transfers are required to include a bill of sale. The state provides a summary of your responsibilities during a vehicle transaction, whether you’re the buyer or the seller.

A West Virginia motor vehicle bill of sale must include:

  • Buyer and seller’s names and addresses
  • Date of sale
  • Make
  • Model
  • Year of production
  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Weight
  • Whether the title is reconstructed
  • Lienholder information
  • Purchase price

3. West Virginia Boat Bill of Sale

In West Virginia, any boat that is powered by a motor must have a title. To be eligible for titling, untitled boats in West Virginia must have a bill of sale. You can use a bill of sale form template (Form DMV-7-TR) provided by the West Virginia Department of Transportation.

A boat bill of sale should include:

  • Contact information of the buyer and the seller
  • Date of sale
  • Make
  • Model
  • Year of production
  • Lienholder information, if applicable
  • Purchase price
  • Hull Identification Number (Hull ID or HIN)

4. West Virginia Firearm Bill of Sale

Firearms are not required to be registered in West Virginia. However, a bill of sale offers important liability protection for all parties. 

For example, it is illegal to sell a firearm to someone who has been convicted of certain felonies. A bill of sale modeled after the federal Firearms Transaction Record (ATF Form 4473) helps protect all parties because it provides a record of ownership and includes questions confirming whether or not the buyer can legally purchase a weapon. 

5. West Virginia Horse or Livestock Bill of Sale

In West Virginia, livestock dealers are legally required to keep their sales records on hand for two years. Livestock bills of sale must include:

  • Number of animals sold
  • Breed
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Weight
  • Brands, marks, ID numbers, or descriptions
  • Name, if applicable
  • Purchase price

Animals that are intended for consumption undergo more rigorous inspection protocols during the sale process. On the other hand, sales of individual horses and similar animals don’t require quite as much documentation.

6. West Virginia General Bill of Sale

A general bill of sale helps prove the transfer of any non-regulated item. The information contained within is often the bare minimum required to put together any bill of sale:

  • Purchase price
  • Transaction date
  • Contact information of all parties involved
  • Signatures

FAQ: About the West Virginia Bill of Sale

What is a bill of sale? 

A bill of sale outlines the terms of the property’s ownership transfer and provides legal proof of the transaction. Bills of sale are almost always drafted by the seller.

How does a bill of sale benefit the buyer?

It’s possible to experience legal problems with an asset even after officially buying it. In some cases, a bank may try to place a lien on the asset or the seller may make a fraudulent claim about the sale. In either case, the bill of sale helps prove the buyer’s ownership.

Additionally, a bill of sale may be legally required if the asset must be registered with the state.

How do I get a bill of sale? 

Anyone can write a bill of sale in West Virginia. As long as the bill of sale is signed by both the buyer and seller, it can be legally binding. Having a notary sign the bill of sale can help it hold up in court. In some cases, notarization can be a legal requirement.

You can take cues from online services to create a bill of sale or draft one yourself. For sensitive assets such as firearms, using document templates from platforms like PandaDoc can ensure that your bill of sale isn’t missing important information.

What information do I need for a bill of sale?

Some regulated or registered assets must include specific information on their bills of sale. For example, car bills of sale require the VIN.

Otherwise, bills of sale generally include some or all of the following information:

  • Date of purchase
  • Buyer and seller’s contact information
  • Purchase price
  • Description of the sold item
  • Guarantee that the asset is cleared of any liens or claims
  • Ongoing terms, such as warranties
  • Signatures of buyer and seller
  • Signature of a notary public

Bill of Sale Forms by State

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