When selling or buying a vehicle in Kentucky, you will need to complete a Kentucky bill of sale.
This is a document that acts as a written record that shows a transfer of ownership.
It also acts as proof should there be any legal disputes with the vehicle. New vehicle owners will also need a Kentucky bill of sale when registering and titling the vehicle.
Other documents that you will need, when transferring ownership, is a completed Odometer Disclosure Statement (Form TC 96-5)
While a Kentucky bill of sale is not always mandatory, it is still good practice to have one because it acts as proof of the purchase. Registering the vehicle takes place at the County Clerk’s Office.
The title of the vehicle must be signed and must be witnessed by a notary.
Details in a Kentucky Bill of Sale
While Kentucky doesn’t supply its own version of a bill of sale, you can easily create one yourself. You will need to have the following details in the document:
- The full legal names of both the seller and the buyer
- The date that the sale took place
- Details about the vehicle: Make, model, year, VIN, color, and condition
- The sale price of the vehicle
- Contact details of both the seller and the buyer
- Signatures of both the seller and the buyer
In some situations, you may need to have the Kentucky bill of sale notarized. The Kentucky bill of sale needs to be written in plain English, without the use of archaic terms or legal jargon. You should have a copy for both parties.
Registering a Vehicle in Kentucky
For new owners, you need to register the vehicle within 15 days of the purchase date. This can be done at your local County Clerk’s Office.
For those who are moving to Kentucky from a different state, you will have 15 days from the date that you moved into Kentucky to register your vehicle. Be sure to have a current registration receipt with you.
Vehicle registration will need to be renewed annually, normally in the month that the registered owner was born. You can renew your vehicle via the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s online portal.
If a vehicle is being registered after the 15-day time frame, you will need to complete an Affidavit of Incomplete Transfer (Form TC96-3)
Requirements For First Time Registration
For vehicles in the state of Kentucky:
- Bill of sale
- Odometer Disclosure Statement (Form TC 96-5);
- Legal and valid photo ID and social security number
- A completed Application for Certificate of Title or Registration (TC96-182)
- Kentucky title for the vehicle that has been signed over by the previous owner. This must be notarized
- Proof of insurance, which must be with a Kentucky insurer and have an issue date that is within 45 days. The policy must cover the following:
- $25,000 to cover bodily injury (per individual)
- $50,000 to cover total bodily injury (per accident)
- $25,000 to cover any damage to property
- If the name of your title differs from the name on your ID, you will need an affidavit that proves both names are yours. For example, you may use a divorce decree or a marriage license.
- Funds to cover the Registration Fees
- If you are registering a vehicle on behalf of the owner, you will need to complete a vehicle power of attorney (Form 96-336)
For vehicles out of the state of Kentucky, you will also need to have a Sheriff’s Inspection done for out-of-state vehicles. This needs to be done at your county’s Sheriff’s Department. Vehicle inspections cost $5.00 and you will need to bring your driver’s license, vehicle title, and a vehicle licensing form.
Following are free customized Kentucky bill of sale forms:
Where to Register a Vehicle in Kentucky?
First-time registrations need to be done in person at your local County Clerk’s Office.
Registration regulations and requirements
Any vehicle that has an active and current registration must also have insurance. If you will not be keeping your registration current, you are required by state law to hand in your license plate. This must be done at your local County Clerk’s office. You must also cancel your insurance. Failure to turn in your plates and not have insurance will incur penalties.
Exceptions for College Students
College students that attend college both outside or within Kentucky are allowed to keep the insurance and registration from their home state, as long as they have a current student ID card from a college, technical college, or university in Kentucky.
Note That: ID must be kept with you at all times.
There are some situations that are exempt from registration regulations:
- If you are active in the military, you are allowed to use your out-of-state insurance when registering or titling a vehicle in Kentucky. Due to Kentucky insurance companies not having to report insured VIN to the DMV each month, you may get an uninsured notice document in the mail. All you need to do is show proof that you are on active duty at the local County Clerks’ office. You can do this using your military ID, or pay stubs.
- If you are living outside of the state of Kentucky temporarily, and your vehicle is registered in Kentucky, you will need to insure it with an insurance company that has the authorization to do business in Kentucky. Insurance for the vehicle must be maintained.