Selling Motorcycle in Pennsylvania

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) 2012 statistics, there were over 800,000 licensed motorcyclists in the state. For the same year, the number of registered motorcycles in the state was in excess of 400,000. Due to this large number, the state has made motorcycle-specific laws regulating buying and selling of motorcycles.

To get in detail information on selling motorcycle in Pennsylvania, PennDOT’s website must be visited. However, the following tips should help the seller sell his/her motorcycle legally in the state of Pennsylvania:

  • Once the buyer has been found, the buyer and the seller should meet at the office of a motor vehicle dealer, tag service or an authorized agent in order to ensure that the title application is completed correctly.
  • If the motorcycle was financed, then the certificate of title will be with the lien holder. A lien indicates a secured financial interest in a particular property which is recognized by law. The seller will have to obtain the certificate from the lien holder before he/she could sell the motorcycle.
  • The seller must sign and handprint his/her name on the certificate of title.
  • On the Pennsylvania certificate of title, the seller’s signature must either be verified or notarized.
  • The seller’s signature may also be required to notarize on some out-of-state titles.
  • The seller will be required to provide the authorized PennDOT agent with a proper proof of identification.
  • If the motorcycle is owned by a business then the person selling it must be authorized by the business to sell the motorcycle.
  • On the owner document, the seller must fill-in mileage of the motorcycle in the appropriate spaces.
  • Once the title is transferred, the seller must remove the license plate from the motorcycle.
  • The license plate must either be transferred to another vehicle of the seller or returned to PennDOT.
  • The amount of the sales tax due to the state’s Department of Revenue is based on a percentage of the motorcycle’s fair market value rather than a percentage of its purchase price. So if the motorcycle is being sold to a family member or friend, there is no use in misquoting its purchase price.


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