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What is a Motorcycle Bill of Sale?

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  • Written By: Lori Kilchermann
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 31 October 2016
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A motorcycle bill of sale is a document that details the transfer of a motorcycle's ownership from one party to another. Details that should be included within the motorcycle bill of sale are the model of the motorcycle, names and addresses of the prior and new owners as well as any identification numbers found on the motorcycle. Dates, the amount paid and terms of the sale should also be represented in the motorcycle bill of sale. Suitable examples of blank motorcycle bill of sale documents can be found on the Internet and in many motorcycle trade publications and magazines.

Many areas require a vehicle title to be exchanged at the time of a motorcycle sale. It is wise to include a motorcycle bill of sale even when the transaction includes a title transfer. The bill of sale will detail the terms of the sale as well as any special circumstances, such as parts owed or any mechanical issues that are to be addressed at a later date. This is especially important when dealing with antique motorcycles. Often, these vintage motorcycles will not have a title.

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When purchasing a motorcycle that is said to have notable history, such as prior famous ownership, racing history or the like, it is imperative to get this in writing and on the motorcycle bill of sale. In the event that the motorcycle is not as represented by the previous owner, the inclusion of this documentation in the motorcycle bill of sale will be invaluable in a court of law. Having witness signatures included on the document serves to make it more valuable in this instance as well.

When making any changes on a motorcycle bill of sale, it is necessary to have the changes initialed by all concerned parties. If using multiple copies of a single document, it is wise to initial all copies and denote changes on all copies as well. This aids in any disputes in the future concerning any meaning of a purposed change in the document. It is also wise to note the number of each copy, such as "one of three" and "two of three" and so on.

Some jurisdictions may require having the bill of sale witnessed by a notary public. When required to do so, these offices are easily located and typically charge a nominal fee. In a dispute, a notarized copy of a document often holds more weight than a non-notarized version.

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