Selling a Car in North Dakota

When you’re selling a vehicle in North Dakota, there are some state-specific requirements that you need to meet. We’ve collected the appropriate information here on these requirements so you can know what is necessary for an easy, hassle-free vehicle sale.

1. Title Information

In North Dakota, you can only sell a vehicle if you have absolute ownership of it. 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, have the lienholder submit a lien release (SFN 2876, only available at state offices) to the state. You will not be able to sell the vehicle until the lien release has been accepted by the state.

You should also make certain that you have the actual title. If you cannot find the title, you’ll need to request a replacement title from the North Dakota Department of Transportation (DOT). 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.

2. Bill of Sale Requirements

North Dakota requires a Bill of Sale for any vehicle sale. You can use the state’s official Bill of Sale form or make your own. If you make your own document, be sure it includes the following:

  • The new owner’s name
  • The full address of the new owner, which cannot be a P.O. box
  • The seller’s name
  • The full address of the seller, which cannot be a P.O. Box
  • 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
  • The signature of the seller
  • The signature of the buyer

If the vehicle you are selling is less than nine years old, you are required to fill out a Damage Disclosure Statement, which focuses on revealing any known mechanical issues.

3. Inspections

North Dakota has no required vehicle inspections or emission testing that impact the selling of your vehicle.

4. License Plates

In North Dakota, when you sell your car, the license plates stay with you rather than with the vehicle. Transferring the plates is entirely legal within the state and is possible as long as the new vehicle is registered in the same name as the plates. If you are not going to transfer the plates to a new vehicle, make sure you return them to a DOT office before you cancel your insurance or you could face unintended fines or liability for the vehicle after you’ve sold it.

5. Odometer Disclosure Requirements

North Dakota requires people to formally disclose the vehicle odometer reading when they sell a vehicle that is 10 years old or newer. The state requires you to use a specific form to disclose this information.

6. Other Information

If you have questions or want more details on vehicle selling, check out the North Dakota Department of Transportation website.