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How to transfer your vehicle registration

Rego transfers are starting to go paperless.

Car registration. Nobody likes paying it, but the fines for being caught on the road without it will soon wind up costing a lot more than the registration you would have been up for. 

Driving without registration also opens you up to massive costs should your car damage anybody or anybody’s property whether it was your fault or not. 

And with electronic number-plate recognition being used in all states now, the chances of getting caught doing the wrong thing are hugely stacked against you.

Registration fees were once used for road and infrastructure upkeep, but these days are more likely to find their way into consolidated revenue and used to buy more speed cameras. But regardless, it’s a price all car owners need to pay.

One of the consequences of that is transferring a car’s registration to keep things legal. There are two main reasons to do this: Either you’ve purchased a second-hand car previously registered to somebody else, or; you’ve moved to a new state or territory and need to transfer your vehicle’s rego as the law demands.

In most cases, the authorities offer online vehicle registration and transfer services (check the various state requirements below) but there are exceptions. These include:

  • A vehicle being transferred between spouses or de facto partners.
  • Transfer car to family member.
  • Heavy vehicles.
  • Cars with personalised number-plates.
  • Sales relating to a deceased estate.
  • Transferring to or from a company or corporation.
  • Where there’s a gap in the legal records.
  • Cars on club permits or other conditional registration.
  • The buyer is a resident of another state or territory.

Again, different states and territories have different views on this stuff, so check with the relevant body. Most offer pretty good online advice lines and information.

Broadly speaking, transferring your registration to a new state or a new owner requires filling out the relevant form, providing proof of the sale, proof of identity and residency and paying the fees and charges.

The fees usually include a set registration transfer fee and then a stamp-duty element levied according to the market value of the car. Again, most state rego websites will have a calculator to define this charge.

The proof of ownership usually consists of an invoice from the seller. But make sure it includes all the vehicle’s info including the make and model, VIN, engine number, year of manufacture, colour and the seller’s full personal and licence details. And, of course, the purchase price.

Some states also require a current roadworthy certificate when a car changes hands (a licensed used-car dealer must provide this) and the seller is usually responsible for providing this. If it’s left to the buyer, the car generally will have to be sold with the registration suspended and can’t be used again until the transfer has been completed.

Here's our how to transfer rego guide state by state:


When you sell a registered car in Victoria, the seller has 14 days to notify VicRoads that the transaction has taken place. This can be done online, once the seller has established a personal account via the VicRoads website, by including the relevant information including the buyer’s license number. If the buyer is from outside Victoria, this process cannot be done online.

In Victoria, the seller also needs to provide a roadworthy certificate (RWC) in order for the transfer to be completed. If the car is sold without a RWC, the number plates have to be handed in to VicRoads and the registration is suspended until the new owner provides the RWC.

Once the deal has been done, both the seller and buyer have to fill out a transfer form (downloadable from the VicRoads website) and the buyer and seller must sign it. 

As the seller, you should take a photo of the completed form, because it’s the buyer’s responsibility to lodge the form with VicRoads to complete the transaction. Then you can confirm online that the car is no longer registered in your name.


New South Wales gives the seller of a car 14 days to lodge an online notification (once you’ve logged in to your MyServiceNSW account) that the vehicle has been sold. If you take longer than this, you could be liable for a late payment fee. 

Like Victoria, if the new owner is not from your home state, you’ll need to lodge a paper form, not an online one. The new owner will not be able to transfer ownership until the seller lodges this paperwork.

You then need to download the Application for Transfer of Registration which the buyer and seller need to complete and sign. 

That form can be lodged at a ServiceNSW customer service centre along with proof of identity, the car’s registration papers and all associated payments including the transfer fees and stamp-duty charges. In many cases, however, you’ll be able to do this online and pay electronically.

If you are transferring ownership of a currently registered vehicle, you don’t need a new pink-slip (similar to the Victorian RWC) and the green-slip (third-party insurance applicable to the vehicle) will automatically transfer to the new owner.


Queensland has a similar arrangement to Victoria and NSW with an online rego transfer option available to private sellers and buyers that starts with the seller notifying the authorities within 14 days of the sale taking place. 

To complete the transaction online, the seller will need to have obtained an electronic safety certificate before the transfer can take place.

To make the transfer in person, you need to have both the buyer and seller fill out the details on the Vehicle Registration Transfer Application form and then attend a service centre with proof of identity, proof of residence and the relevant fees and charges payable.


While most other states give you 14 days to notify the department of a transfer a car’s registration, in Western Australia, you have only seven days before you’re liable for a late fee

From there, you can conduct a transfer of car registration online through your DoT Direct Online Account. Or you can do it in paper form by obtaining a copy of the vehicle transfer form, filling it out, completing the rather grandly named Notification of Change of Ownership Vehicle Licence Transfer form.

The next step is to give the buyer the red copy of the completed form, give them the registration papers and any other relevant paperwork and mail the blue copy of the form to the Department of Transport. It is then the buyer’s responsibility to complete their end of the process including paying the relevant fees and charges.


Transferring the registration of a car that has changed hands in South Australia must be done within 14 days or there’s a $92 late fee that will apply. 

To tackle this procedure online, you need to have a MySA GOV account and follow the steps. Completing the transfer online requires the seller providing the car’s registration number, their SA driver’s licence number and name.

You can also do this in person by visiting a Service SA customer service centre with a completed transfer of registration form and pay the relevant fees. 

The buyer and seller must sign this form, so you need to download it before the time of the actual sale. SA also has a system where the seller can lodge these forms and fees by post with payment by either cheque or money order.


Tassie cars owners can transfer vehicle ownership online, but it only works if the buyer and seller both hold Tasmanian drivers’ licences. Online payment can be made by Mastercard or Visa only.

In other instances, the buyer needs to visit a Service Tasmania shopfront and provide details including your proof of entitlement (an invoice from the seller for the purchase) their Tasmanian license or other proof of identity and a complete transfer form with the signatures of all operators or intended operators (believe it or not).


In the Northern Territory, registration transfer starts with filling out the Territory’s R11 form, then providing proof of ownership and a roadworthy inspection report if required. 

The list of vehicles and circumstances that require a roadworthy inspection is long and complex, so check out for the full story.

The buyer will also need to provide proof of identity and attend an MVR office to lodge the paperwork and pay the fees and charges.

The alternative is to lodge the form and supporting documents by email to: and wait to be notified of their receipt before you can pay the fees. You have 14 days to notify of the change of ownership.


The ACT requires a roadworthy inspection on most vehicles before a transfer can take place. And all vehicles from out-of-state or previously unregistered in the ACT must be inspected at the central inspection centre. 

You’ll also need to provide proof of identity and residency, proof of ownership (an invoice from the sale) and nominate the garaged address. As with many other jurisdictions, you have 14 days to notify the authorities of a transfer of ownership before late fees are applied.