Selling a Car in Missouri

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If you’re selling a car in Missouri, you’ll need to provide the buyer with the certificate of title, a valid safety inspection and emissions certificate, and a notarized lien release. You must also submit a notice of sale or bill of sale to the Department of Revenue.
When you enter into the sale of a vehicle with another private party, you will have a few legal responsibilities. Each state has its own rules to ensure the legal transfer of ownership. If you make any mistakes, you could be liable for the car, even after you’ve sold it.
This process can be tedious, so the car insurance comparison and broker app Jerry has compiled everything you need to know about selling a car in Missouri. 

What you need to sell a car in Missouri

To sell your car privately in Missouri, you’ll need to gather all the necessary forms and information, including:
  • Properly assigned Certificate of Title
  • Valid safety inspection certificate, less than 60 days old
  • Valid emissions certificate, less than 60 days old (for county residents of Franklin, Jefferson, St. Charles, or St. Louis city)
  • Notarized Lien Release, if applicable
  • Odometer disclosure and date of sale
  • Notarized Bill of Sale, reported to the Department of Revenue within 30 days from date of sale
You will also need to remove your license plate (valid or expired) before the buyer takes possession of the vehicle.

Getting a pre-sale inspection

Missouri law requires all motor vehicles to pass a safety inspection done by an authorized Missouri inspection station within 60 days of the sale, unless the vehicle is exempted. County residents of Franklin, Jefferson, St. Charles, or St. Louis city also need to get a vehicle smog inspection no more than 60 days before selling the vehicle. 
The following vehicles are exempt from a safety inspection:
  • Vehicles in the first 10 years of their model years with less than 150,000 miles
  • Vehicles registered for 26,000 pounds or above and registered for less than 12 months
  • "Even" model-year vehicles with registrations expiring in "odd" calendar years
  • "Odd" model-year vehicles with registrations expiring in "even" calendar years
  • All types of trailers
  • Motor vehicles for interstate commerce and registered with the Missouri Department of Transportation
  • Motor vehicles that display historic plates
  • Motor vehicles sold for junk, salvage, or rebuilding
  • Motor vehicles sold from dealer to dealer
  • Low-speed vehicles
The following are exempt from an emissions inspection:
  • Vehicles registered outside of the listed counties
  • New vehicles and the first retail sale during the model year and the following year with odometer with less than 6,000 miles at time of sale
  • All types of trailers
  • Motor vehicles and RVs that weigh over 8,500 pounds
  • Motorcycles, dirt bikes, and motor tricycles
  • Vehicles made in the 1995 model year or older, and 1996 model year or older for diesel vehicles
  • Motor vehicles for interstate commerce and registered with the Missouri Department of Transportation
  • Vehicles for sale as junk, salvage, or rebuilding
  • Vehicles for sale at public auction and bought and sold between dealers
  • Low-speed gasoline vehicles
  • “Title Only” vehicles
  • Vehicles with historic, school bus, shuttle bus, or street rod plates
  • Solar power, electric, hydrogen, or dual-fueled vehicles using fuels other than gasoline, diesel, or E10 and E85
  • Plug-in electric-drive vehicles
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Documenting the sale

Once you’ve found a buyer, you must complete the Notice of Sale or Bill of Sale form. The following information should be included and notarized:
  • Year and make of the vehicle
  • Title number
  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Date of sale
  • Sale price
  • Printed legal name and address of the seller and buyer
  • Signature of seller and buyer
You can download the Notice of Sale or Bill of Sale document from the Missouri Department of Revenue

Signing the title over

All sellers and buyers are required to print their names and sign the back of the title within the assignment area (the signatures don’t need to be notarized). The seller must also include the odometer reading and date of sale. 
Be sure to verify the information before writing on the title. Correction fluid or erase marks on the title are not permitted.

Reporting the sale

As the seller, you’ll need to report the sale or transfer within 30 days to the Department of Revenue. You will be required to submit the Notice of Sale or Bill of Sale form with the information listed above.
If you fail to report the sale of your vehicle, you will be guilty of an infraction and be fined up to $200. Therefore, notifying the department as soon as possible will help protect you from possible liability.

Finding affordable car insurance 

If you’ve purchased a new car, it’s time to look for the perfect car insurance policy. The car insurance broker app Jerry will help make this a breeze, as it can compare quotes from 50+ top providers in under 45 seconds. All you have to do is to choose the best coverage for you for the most affordable price!
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Your car’s worth can be found through resources like  Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book. On those sites, you enter the year, model, make, mileage, and condition of your car, and they’ll calculate the fair market value.

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