When you sell a used car, you want to make sure that you’re following all the rules. That means brushing up on the regulations specific to your state. Resident in PA? Then here are all of the car-selling laws in Pennsylvania that you need to know about.
Everything You Need to Know About Selling a Car in PA
1. You Need to Have the Original Title
According to used car laws in PA, you need a real paper copy of your vehicle title when selling your car.
If your car title is currently with your lien holder, you’ll need to pay the outstanding loan in order to claim your title.
If your car title is lost, you can apply for a duplicate title using Form MV-380, available from PennDOT. There’s a fee of $58 for duplicate titles.
2. You Have to Fill in the Title Document
Car-selling laws in Pennsylvania state that a seller has to list the following on the car title:
- the buyer’s name and address
- an up-to-date odometer reading
3. Don’t Sign and Date the Car Title Until You’re in the Presence of an Authorized Agent
Sellers and buyers have to print and sign their names on the car title. They also need to provide acceptable proof of identification.
They have to do this in the presence of an authorized PennDOT or tag agent who can notarize the car title.
4. You Have to Pay Sales Tax
According to used car selling laws in Pennsylvania, you have to pay the following rates of sales tax at the time of tile transfer:
- City of Philadelphia residents — 8% of purchase price
- Allegheny County residents — 7% of purchase price
- Residents anywhere else in Pennsylvania — 6% of purchase price
5. The Buyer Has to Get Insurance Before They Register the Vehicle
When you go to get your car title notarized, ensure that the buyer has insured the car and can provide proof of insurance. Without it, they will not be able to register the vehicle or receive a license plate to drive it.
6. You Should Return Your Vehicle License Plate
After the title is transferred, but before you hand over your vehicle to its new owner, you should remove the license plates. Unless you plan to transfer the plates to another car, return your vehicle plates to:
- Bureau of Motor Vehicles, Return Tag Unit, P.O. Box 68597, Harrisburg, PA 17106-8597
7. You Can’t Sell More Than Four Cars per Year Without the Proper License
If you want to sell more than four cars in a year, you need to apply for a Dealer’s license.
Car Selling in Pennsylvania FAQs
How many cars can you sell annually in Pennsylvania?
Car selling rules state that you can sell up to four cars in a year. If you wish to sell more than four cars, you need to apply for a Dealer’s license.
What are the penalties for selling too many cars in one year in PA?
If you are found to have sold more than four cars in a year, without the proper Dealer’s license, you may face a fine or jail time.
Are the rules different for selling privately vs selling to a dealer?
Car-selling regulations are largely the same whether you sell to a private buyer or to a dealership.
The only difference? A dealership will know exactly what paperwork is required and participate in completing that process. When you sell privately, it’s up to the seller and buyer to ensure the paperwork is completed properly.