When you decide to sell your vehicle privately most think of the positives associated in doing so, however, there are many issues that can arise even years down the road if the purchaser doesn’t transfer the ownership correctly.
Unfortunately, many people are not aware that their vehicle (even after sold) is still registered to them until the purchaser transfers the ownership into their name. Many sellers naively believe they have done their due diligence by providing the purchaser with the required signed documents, who then is supposed to bring to Service Ontario to change over the ownership. Regrettably this is not always the case...
If the purchaser doesn't register the ownership in their name, this can lead to the seller being held liable for a variety of things including traffic fines, towing bills, even legal liability; "should an accident occur, you could be held financially responsible if the new owner has not obtained insurance."
It appears the issue may originate with the procedure outlined in the Ontario Used Vehicle Information Package (UVIP). "Sellers are told they have the "option" of visiting a Service Ontario centre to report their used vehicle as sold." Understanding the potential risks involved, shouldn't this be mandatory not optional? Especially considering sellers are at the mercy of the purchaser who may or may not go and register the vehicle in their name. The procedure for the purchaser involves, "bringing the proper paperwork to a license issuing office, paying retail sales tax, plate and permit fees, plus showing proof of insurance and vehicle safety."
Sellers cannot and should not depend on the purchaser to transfer the ownership into their name. Protect yourself - do not give anyone your vehicle until the purchaser shows you signed and approved transfer of ownership documents from Service Ontario.
We at Youngs Insurance Brokers want to ensure you are fully aware of what can happen when selling your vehicle privately. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us today!