Selling a Car in Minnesota

When you’re selling a vehicle in Minnesota, there are some requirements you have to meet. We’ve collected the appropriate information here on these requirements so you can make certain you’re ready for a smooth vehicle sale.

1. Title Information

In Minnesota, you can only sell a vehicle if you have complete ownership of the vehicle. In other words, any “lien” (loan) on the vehicle must be paid off before you can sell the vehicle. If you have paid off a lien, double-check your title to make certain that the lien has been released. If not, contact the lienholder and have them transmit a “lien release” or a “lien termination” form to the Minnesota Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS) office.

You should also make certain that you have the actual title. If you cannot find the title, you will need to request a replacement title from the DVS office. You will need the physical title so that you can fill out the necessary information for the buyer as proof of the transfer of the vehicle. Both your signature and the buyer’s signature will be necessary. You are also required in Minnesota to fill out the Damage Disclosure section on the title if the vehicle is six years old or newer.

2. Bill of Sale Requirements

Minnesota does not require you to have a Bill of Sale when you sell a vehicle, because you will already be putting all the appropriate information onto the title when transferring the title.

However, you will have to fill out a Report of Sale. The easiest way to do so is online, but you can also go directly to a local DVS office and fill out the form there. The Report of Sale includes the following information:

  • The new owner’s name
  • The full address of the new owner
  • The seller’s name
  • The full address of the seller
  • The date of the sale
  • The sale price
  • A full and detailed vehicle description, including the vehicle’s make, model, year, series number (if applicable) and body type (2-door, 4-door, sedan, etc.), plus the vehicle identification number (VIN)
  • The vehicle odometer reading at the time of sale

Also recognize that you are going to have to pay sales tax on the vehicle, with the actual percentage of the sale dependent on the year when the sale occurs.

3. Inspections

Minnesota has no required vehicle inspection or emission testing on its vehicles (previous regulations were cancelled in 1999), so you do not have to get any tests done on your vehicle before you sell it.

4. License Plates

In Minnesota, when you sell a vehicle, the license plates stay with the vehicle. License plates in Minnesota are replaced every seven years, regardless of who owns the vehicle.

5. Odometer Disclosure Requirements

Minnesota requires you to formally disclose the odometer reading on your vehicle when you sell the vehicle and it is 10 years old or newer. Completing the odometer reading section of the title transfer form is sufficient to fulfill this requirement.

6. Other Information

If you have questions or want more details on vehicle selling, check out the website for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.