An Ohio bill of sale is a document that contains the transaction elements of goods from the seller to the buyer. It’s frequently used in everyday trade as it protects the rights, interests, and liabilities of both contractual parties, called the buyer and seller.

The elements that the seller and buyer enter in the bill of sale depend on the subject of the transaction, but usually they consist of transaction amount, payment method, disclosures, etc.

Most importantly, the bill of sale contains the signatures of both parties, making it legally binding.

Ohio Bill of Sale Parties

The main parties to the bill of sale are the buyer and the seller.


A seller might be a private person or an authorized dealer transferring ownership of their personal property to the buyer. 


A buyer pays a certain price to acquire goods and become their owner.

Buyer and Seller Disclosure

If they reveal all the details, the seller cannot be held responsible because they acted bona fide. On the other hand, the buyer has a clear insight into whether the item has any damage or flaws. 

If the buyer agrees to buy a thing that has defects in such a condition, this will be stated in the “as-is” disclosure.

Additionally, the bill of sale for the purchase of motor vehicles generally contains an odometer disclosure, which shows the number of miles the vehicle has traveled.

Ohio Bill of Sale Description of Goods

This section provides all relevant details about the item that is the subject of the transaction in order to individualize it in relation to others of the same type. For example, in the case of a motor vehicle transaction, the bill of sale should include:

Mandatory Information

  • Names and addresses of the buyer and the seller

  • Vehicle manufacturer, model, and year of manufacture

  • Type and color

  • Vehicle identification number (VIN)

  • Odometer reading

  • Description of any damages on the vehicle

  • Additional vehicle accessories

Ohio Bill of Sale Purchase Price

The buyer has several methods of paying the purchase price provided in the section below. We’ll go over the most common ones in the section below.

#1. Payment

This is the most commonly used method. The price can be paid in cash, by credit card, through the bank transfer, all at once, or in installments.

#2. Trade

Parties can agree that instead of paying in cash, the buyer will transfer ownership of their own item to the seller.

In that scenario, the bill of sale should contain information about the item the buyer handed over to the seller.

#3. Gift

The seller can give the buyer a certain good without the buyer's obligation to pay the price or give something else in return. This method is often used to transfer ownership of an item between members of the family and business partners.

Ohio Bill of Sale for Motor Vehicles (Cars) Requirements

Even though a bill of sale is not generally required when buying a motor vehicle in Ohio, there are some situations where one is required to ensure a legal and valid purchase.

Out-of-State Vehicles

A bill of sale is important when buying a vehicle from another state, as it serves as a document that records the sale, which is useful for both parties.

Abandoned or Junk Vehicles

If a vehicle registered in Ohio is declared a total loss, the owner must change the title to "salvage" within 30 days. This is an important step to establish the legal status of the vehicle and ensure that any potential buyers are aware of its history and condition.

Furthermore, if you sell a car registered as salvage, you must inform the buyer in writing about the title and provide a notarized bill of sale.

Vehicles Sold by Dealers

When you buy a car from a dealer in Ohio, a bill of sale is not necessary because the dealer handles the paperwork involved in transferring ownership.

Vehicles Sold by Private Parties

When you buy a car from an individual instead of a dealer, where the transaction is often more formal and regulated, you should consider creating a bill of sale.

Ohio Bill of Sale for Boats (Vessel) Requirements

In Ohio, proper boat registration requires proof of ownership, which differs for boats with and without titles. To establish ownership of titled boats, you must possess an Ohio title bearing your name. However, for untitled boats, a bill of sale serves as sufficient proof of ownership.

We advise you to include the following details in your bill of sale to guarantee a smooth registration procedure: 

Mandatory Information

  • Information about parties

  • Boat identification number (BIN) or serial number

  • Make, length, year of vessel

  • Hull material

  • Boat type

  • Propulsion type, engine type, and fuel type (if previously registered in Ohio).

  • Signatures of the parties

Ohio Bill of Sale for Firearms Requirements

Ohio state law does not require guns to be registered, but it is recommended that both the buyer and seller provide proof of purchase in the form of a bill of sale.

Ohio Bill of Sale for Horses Requirements

The purchase of a horse is a significant investment, so we highly recommend preparing a bill of sale for any horse purchase. It should include:

Mandatory Information

  • Names and addresses of both parties

  • The date of the sale

  • Description of the horse (breed, color, markings, and age) 

  • Purchase price

  • Signatures of both the buyer and seller

Ohio Bill of Sale for Trailers (RVs) Requirements

According to Ohio law, all travel trailers and commercial trailers weighing 4000 lbs or more must be titled. 

The bill of sale is not required as a necessary document for title, but it is a good idea for the parties to use the regular bill of sale for their own personal security as well.

Ohio Bill of Sale Other Requirements

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (DNR) only accepts forms, such as bill of sale, in English.

Additionally, after both parties have signed the bill of sale, they should make multiple copies for safekeeping and one for the DNR’s records. 

This ensures that each party has their own copy, which is essential in case of any future disputes or misunderstandings.

Ohio Bill of Sale Taxes

According to the Ohio Department of Taxation, the responsibility for paying sales tax and title fees when purchasing a vehicle can vary depending on the situation.

When a customer purchases a vehicle from a dealer, the sales tax and title fees are usually included in the purchase price. On the other side, when a person buys a vehicle from a private seller, the buyer is responsible for paying the sales tax.

In the third scenario, when a person sells a vehicle to a dealer, the obligation to pay taxes and fees falls on the dealer.

  • You can always choose to create a handwritten bill of sale; however, for it to be enforceable in court, it must include all the important details about the purchase.

  • Both the buyer and seller should sign the bill of sale, as the signatures serve as evidence that the transaction took place.

  • Creating a bill of sale in Ohio can be easy if you have a template to follow. You can download the appropriate form from our website, which will provide you with the necessary information and structure to make a complete and valid bill of sale.

  • A bill of sale is useful for both parties in a transaction since it provides the buyer with evidence of the sale's final price and the terms of payment, and it gives the seller a record of the products’ identification and condition.

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