Linn County now requiring bill of sale for vehicle transfers

Bill of sale forms, which are now required for vehicle transfers between private parties, can be found online on the Linn County website. — Izabela Zaluska/Little Village

Starting on Jan. 1, Linn County began requiring a bill of sale in order to register a vehicle that has changed hands in a transaction between private parties. Not all Iowa counties require a bill of sale for such private transactions, as opposed to purchases through car dealerships, but Iowa State County Treasurer’s Association and the Iowa Department of Revenue are encouraging counties to adopt the requirement.

According to Linn County, the new requirement will “substantiate vehicle purchase prices, which have a direct impact on the fees that are remitted to the State’s Road Use Tax fund.” Although there is no sales tax on vehicle sales in Iowa, there is a one-time fee, equal to 5 percent of vehicle’s sales price, charged when an owner registers a vehicle. That fee is paid into Iowa’s Road Use Tax Fund.

The fund is administered by the Iowa Department of Transportation and is the “major state funding source for the construction, maintenance, and supervision of Iowa’s roads,” according to the Legislative Services Agency.

A bill of sale form is available online through Linn County’s website.

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