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CHANGE OF OWNERSHIP PAPERWORK

The paperwork to complete when you buy (or sell) a car is very simple. It is also extremely important. The seller does not legally have to fill out any form (but it is in their best interest to do so). The buyer needs to fill out an MR13B form, explained below.

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WHAT THE BUYER NEEDS TO DO

  • Note down the make, model, registration plate (number plate) and VIN number of the vehicle you are buying.
  • The VIN number can be found under the bonnet of the car on a little plate usually on the left hand side/drivers side or on the certificate of registration that the seller might have on them.
  • Go to a PostShop or branch of AA, or VTNZ, or VINZ with your driver license and money to pay the $9 fee.
  • Pick up or ask for a MR13B form.
  • The form asks for a physical and mailing address. The physical address could be a backpackers but your postal address is ideally somewhere that you receive your mail.
  • Fill out the form but leave the driver license number empty as you do not have a New Zealand driver license.
  • Take it to the counter and the person serving you will take your form and provide you with a transfer receipt.
  • The seller may or may not ask you to show them this transfer receipt. If you have a smart phone you could take a photo and message them or go to a Post Office together and they could physically see your receipt.
  • Make sure you have third party insurance before you drive your new vehicle.

NOTE: Only buyers with New Zealand driver licenses can fill out the MR13B online, so if someone tells you to go online and fill out the form, this is not the case.

WHAT THE SELLER NEEDS TO DO

Fill in the change of ownership section for sellers on the vehicle’s Certificate of Registration and send it to Land Transport New Zealand’s Transport Registry Centre (address is on the certificate). If the seller can not find their Certificate of Registration, follow the steps below:

  • Get a seller’s change of ownership form (MR 13A) from a PostShop or branch of AA or VTNZ or VINZ.
  • Complete the form and send it in to the Transport Registry Centre.
  • If the seller has a New Zealand driver’s license you could go online and fill out the form.
  • There is no charge for the seller to process the MR13A form.
  • The Land Transport Agency recommend that the seller asks to see a transfer receipt from the buyer before handing over the keys to the vehicle. This shows that the buyer has completed a change of ownership form (MR13B).

DOING IT ONLINE

Please note that to complete a change of ownership form online you do need a New Zealand driver license. So pop in to a Post Office or branch of AA and complete the paperwork.

WHY IT IS SO IMPORTANT

If you don’t notify that there’s been a change of ownership, you may receive the other party’s:

  • speed camera fines (up to $630 per offence)
  • parking tickets (unlimited amounts)
  • vehicle licensing fees for up to 12 months (up to $300)
  • fines for not displaying a vehicle licensing label ($200)
  • fines for not displaying a current warrant of fitness ($200)
  • If fines go unpaid, a debt collector could be sent to recover them. If new owners don’t notify a change of ownership, they may not be eligible for vehicle insurance or a parking permit.