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What Is an Illinois Bill of Sale?

An Illinois bill of sale is document that's used to document the exchange of legal interest in a piece of property of some sort. In a bill of sale, there are two main parties: the buyer and the seller. An Illinois bill of sale should include a description of the property being sold as well as the price. It should also be signed and dated by both the buyer and the seller.

What Are Some Common Bills of Sale Used in Illinois?

In Illinois, the most commonly used bills of sale are a general bill of sale, a bill of sale for motor vehicles, a bill of sale for junk vehicles, a bill of sale for a boat, and a bill of sale for a gun.

How Do I Write an Illinois Bill of Sale?

To write an Illinois bill of sale, you must include the proper information. The information you must include will depend on the purpose for the bill of sale. However, all bills of sale in Illinois must have specific information about the buyer and the seller:

  • Full legal name;
  • Full physical address; and
  • Driver's license or state identification number.

Below, you'll learn about the necessary elements for the most commonly used Illinois bills of sale.

Illinois General Bill of Sale

With an Illinois general bill of sale, you should have the full legal name, physical address, and driver's license or state ID number of both the buyer and the seller. Next, you should describe the property. If the item being sold has a serial or registration number, such as a laptop, you should list it. It's also important to list descriptive characteristics. For example, if you sold your old flat screen TV, your description might look like this:

52" flat screen Sony color television in working condition, serial number #00000, with remote control and power cord.

Next, you'll list the price for the item in words and then in numbers. For example, three-hundred dollars and no cents ($300.00). If there are other terms or conditions for the sale to be completed, those should be explained. The bill of sale should also disclose if the item is being gifted to the buyer. If there is a trade, that should be explained and a description of the trade item should be included.

A seller's disclosure isn't a requirement for an Illinois general bill of sale, but it can be a useful provision. The purpose of a seller's disclosure is to inform the buyer if the seller is aware of any defects in the item that's being sold.

An Illinois general bill of sale should be signed and dated by both the buyer and the seller.

Illinois Bill of Sale for Motor Vehicles

For an Illinois bill of sale for a working motor vehicle, you'll need the legal name, physical address, and driver's license or state ID number of both the buyer and the seller. To describe the vehicle, you should document the make, model, and year of the vehicle; the VIN; the color; and the odometer reading. You should also document whether the seller is including the title.

The bill of sale should list the date that it was created along with the date that the payment or trade for the vehicle was made. This is particularly important if the bill of sale and the payment were finished on separate days.

With regard to documenting the payment for the vehicle, the amount paid should first be listed in words and then in numbers. For example, five-thousand, five-hundred dollars and zero cents ($5,500.00). If the vehicle is being gifted to the buyer, that should be indicated in the bill of sale. Any traded vehicle or other items used in a trade should be described.

The bill of sale should explain any additional terms and conditions that are part of the sale.

Although a buyer's disclosure isn't legally required according to the Illinois Secretary of State, it could be beneficial in the event that a lawsuit arises over the sudden breakdown of the vehicle. In the buyer's disclosure, the buyer is made aware of any potential mechanical issues or other problems that the car has.

Illinois Bill of Sale for Junk Vehicle

In Illinois, if you're selling or gifting a junk vehicle, you must use a specific bill of sale known as an Illinois Junk Vehicle Bill of Sale VSD 658. That form must be completed in full. It requires the legal name of the owner of the junk vehicle, physical address (including city and zip code), the name of the buyer, and you must indicate whether the vehicle is being sold or if it is a gift. Next, the form requires the year, make, model, and VIN of the vehicle. There's also a space for you to list the amount the buyer is giving for the vehicle.

The current owner of the vehicle must sign an affirmation that there is no outstanding lien on the junk vehicle and that they have the legal right to provide the Certificate of Title to the buyer even if the title was lost. It must also be signed by the buyer and dated.

Illinois Bill of Sale for Boats

An Illinois bill of sale for a boat must list the legal name and address of both the buyer and the seller. You should document the make, length, and year of the boat; Hull ID; registration number; odometer in hours; and the title number. The bill of sale should specify whether a trailer and / or outboard motor will be included with the sale. If a trailer will be included, should include the make and year. If an outboard motor is included, you should include the number of motors, the make, the year, and the horsepower.

An Illinois bill of sale for a boat should document whether compensation will be made using some form of money (such as cash, money order, or a cashier's check), a trade, or a combination of the two. Because a bill of sale should include the date that it was created, you should remember to include the date that the payment for the boat was or will be made. This is very important if the date of payment is different from the date that the bill of sale is created.

You must list the amount of money that is paid for the boat first in words and then in numbers. For example, four-thousand, two-hundred and fifty dollars and zero cents ($4,250.00). If a trade of some sort is being made for full or partial payment for the boat, the trade item should be described in the bill of sale.

Although a seller's disclosure isn't a legal necessity in Illinois for a boat bill of sale, it is a good idea to include one. The purpose of a seller's disclosure is to inform the buyer if there are any problems or defect with the boat that the seller knows about.

The bill of sale should be signed and dated by both the buyer and the seller.

Illinois Bill of Sale for a Gun

To write an Illinois bill of sale for a gun, you must include the full legal name, physical address, and driver's license or state ID number for both parties. You must include the make, model, caliber and serial number of the gun. You should add the date that the bill of sale was created.

Your Illinois bill of sale for a gun must have an approval number generated by the Illinois State Police that verifies the buyer has a valid Firearm Owner Identification card (FOID card). To get the approval number, you'll need the buyer's date of birth.

Next, you should document the compensation received for the gun. If it is being given as a gift, that should be documented in the bill of sale. If there is a trade, the traded item should be described. If compensation is made in cash, check, or by a cashier's check, you should list the amount in words and then in numbers. For example, five-hundred dollars and no cents ($500.00). If the buyer is paying for the gun on a date that is different from the date the bill of sale was created, the date should be listed.

In addition to being signed and dated by both the buyer and the seller in front of a notary, you should keep a copy of the bill of sale for no less than 10 years.

Is an Illinois Bill of Sale Required to Register a Vehicle?

No. An Illinois bill of sale is not required to register a vehicle. However, a bill of sale can be a helpful document. A title is required and you are not allowed to operate the vehicle with the plates on the vehicle at the time that it is sold as those belong to the seller.

To register a vehicle in Illinois, you need to apply for registration and title on the vehicle. You can use a bill of sale along with the proper VSD form depending on your needs. You should make sure that you have proof of insurance and that you're prepared to pay the full amount of tax and registration fees required for the vehicle.

Is an Illinois Bill of Sale Required to Register a Boat?

Yes, for certain classes of watercraft and boats, you need an Illinois bill of sale. For Class 2, 3, and 4 if the used boat or watercraft was purchased from an Illinois dealer or retailer, you need:

  • A completed Watercraft Application;
  • The original Illinois watercraft title or a Power of Attorney form (and lien release letter);
  • The proper tax form completed by the dealer or retailer;
  • Check or money order for the tax amount

For used boats or watercraft that count as Class 1, but do not qualify as a jet ski or PWC and it is purchased from an individual, you need:

For used watercrafts with a currently issued Illinois registration number that is purchased from an individual, regardless of Class, you need:

Is a Bill of Sale Required to Register a Gun in Illinois?

No. Guns in their own right aren't registered in the State of Illinois. However, a bill of sale is required for what is known as a person to person firearms transfer. Under Illinois state law, you can only engage in the private selling of a gun if the other person has a valid FOID and you have an approval number generated by the Illinois State Police. The FOID information and the approval information must be included on the bill of sale. It's important to note that FOID approvals are only valid for 30 days after they are generated.

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