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-   -   ownership transfer for a canadian bike.. (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/north-america/ownership-transfer-for-canadian-bike-41175)

fazer_1000 1 Mar 2009 03:51

ownership transfer for a canadian bike..
hey evryone..
i´m travelling at the moment in south america on a klr i bought from a candian guy (he´s from BC).
since i´m neither a canadian nor american citizen i understood i could not legally make an ownership transfer, as i don´t have a residencial address in canada.
as i came to think about it, it doesn´t look logical to me, why won´t i be able to be the owner of the bike?

so my question is, is it possible for me to make the ownership transfer?
is it a problem that the bike is currently in SA?
what do i need in order to register the bike on my name in canada?
resident address? friend´s address? money?
how long does it take?
the previous owner is a nice guy from BC, i´m sure that if i contact him for help he would try to help make the transfer.

i´ll appreciate the help since it would make it easier for me to sell the moto when i´m done on my trip (well, my bank manager sais it´s ¨NOW!¨) or even to take it back home to israel if i need..


Ekke 2 Mar 2009 01:26

Ownership isn't the problem
Hi Asaf,

The problem isn't so much the ownership of the bike it is the registration. I assume when you bought the bike you got a bill of sale, this is your proof of ownership.

Registering the bike in Canada would be fairly straightforward if you were here but is terribly difficult if you are not. We even had difficulty getting a new Alberta licence plate when Audrey's was stolen in Germany and only managed to get one because we had signed a form before we left authorising someone to do it on our behalf.

Registering the bike where you are could also be challenging as you would be importing the bike to that country and would have to pay duties.

Sorry I haven't got any better answers. Maybe Mountain Man from BC will chip in and provide some comments. He has a couple of bikes with odd registrations. :-)

normw 2 Mar 2009 10:57

If you want to end up with a British Columbia registration in your name here's more information than you might really want to know.

Both you and the seller need to fill out and sign a B.C. type of transfer form known offically as a "APVGT Transfer/Tax Statement of Vehicle Origin". The seller can easily pick one up, complete his part of it and send it to you.

The seller also needs to provide you with a signed tear off portion of his old registration.

You would fill out and sign your portion of the transfer form. Skipping over some complications for the moment, the completed transfer form (and the old registration) could be sent back to B.C. and presented by somebody at any "Autoplan" office in B.C. Two sales taxes would have to be paid on the selling price (12% total) plus a further fee. This would yield a new B.C. registration in your name but no licence plate. In B.C. a new plate only issues if you buy at least the minimum required liability insurance for the vehicle. Such insurance would not be valid in S.A. by the way.

O.K. now for the complications. Firstly, since you would not be personally present in B.C. to carry out this process, whoever goes into the Autoplan office for you would need a type of power of attorney authorizing them to effect the transfer on your behalf.

Next, the transfer form does have a space for you to write in a B.C. driver's licence number. I'm not sure if this is compulsory. People do come into the province from elsewhere and buy vehicles presumably while still on foreign driver's licences.

Next, the transfer form does, of course, require an address.

To find out out what the power of attorney looks like, and if you must have a B.C. driver's licence and if you require a B.C. address I suggest you root around on the Insurance Corporation of B.C. website which has a wealth of information. The URL is ICBC - Insurance Corporation of British Columbia. This government insurance company handles all vehicle registrations as well as vehicle insurance.

If you managed to jump through all these hoops and end up wih a B.C. registration in your name I'm not sure what you could do with it given that you're is S.A.

As I said, perhaps more than you wanted to know.


Dirtpig 2 Mar 2009 18:34

What you will need in BC to register the bike is a government transfer form known as a APV-10. It is signed by both parties and has all the registration information on the bike along with mileage, that sort of thing.

You will need an address in BC to provide for correspondence such as the address of the person who sold you the bike. You can use your international drivers permit in lieu of a BC drivers licence. The transfer and everything can be done in about 30 minutes if you are here in person including issuing a new license plate. What license plate are you using on the bike right now ?

Sorry Ekke but in BC a bill of sale does not provide ownership of a registered vehicle only a proper transfer and registration. Actually under BC law you are supposed to transfer the vehicle within ten days of purchase

If you are here in BC the transfer is really straight forward but it would be darn difficult if not impossible as a non-resident ( being non- Canadian) and tying to do it from outside the country. One of the most basic things is if the bike needs and inspection for registration purposes the bike is not physically here.

My suggestion would be to either attempt to come to BC to register the bike or make arrangements to register it down there somewhere if possible.

fazer_1000 4 Mar 2009 16:26

hmmm... hmmmm....:eek3::confused1:
seems easy.. well first i should thank you guys for helping me out on this one.
this is quite a handfull as i see it as there`s no chance i`ll be visiting canada any time soon.
and maybe it just sounds a bit complicated with all the forms but i think that for now i will try and sell it here the way i bought it and try to avoid the head ache..

thanks for your help fellas,
i`ll update (and ask some more questions probably) if i do decide to carry on with this ownership transfer issue.


PanEuropean 14 Mar 2009 06:40


Dirtpig raised a good point in his post (above) when he mentioned that the motorcycle needs to have a safety inspection before you can get a licence plate for it. However, "getting a licence plate" is not the same as "registering yourself as the owner". You have to be registered as the owner of a motor vehicle before you can get a licence plate for it, but you do not necessarily have to get a licence plate for a vehicle that you register.

What I mean is this: If your objective is simply to get a document that indicates that you have legal title to the motorcycle, you could probably accomplish that without having to bring the motorcycle to Canada. You would need to pay the sales taxes (the 12% of fair retail value) previously referred to, but you would not need to pay the licence plate fee, or get insurance. What you would have is a document that says that you have legal title to an "unfit" motor vehicle. The vehicle would be deemed "unfit" simply because it has not passed the inspection that is required in Canada whenever a used motor vehicle changes owners.

It might be easiest all around to get the moto transferred into your name and plated in one of the countries that you are currently travelling in. You might need to consult a local lawyer, but I am sure that the cost of getting legal advice from a local lawyer and possibly plating the bike with a temporary (meaning, eventually for export) plate down south would be less than the cost of paying the 12% sales tax in BC.


Deuce 28 Mar 2009 13:20

Registering Bikes in B.C.
First of all the tax would only be 7% PST, since you do not have to pay the 5% GST on private sales.

Second, motorcycles DO NOT require any type of inspection to be registered in B.C., even when they are coming from another state/province. If it is from another state/province the only requirement is that the VIN # must be checked physically by the ICBC agent doing the registration. Since this is a B.C. registered bike already it does not require this to be done.

ozcan 21 Jun 2009 14:30

Similar Situation (?)
We're Aussies buying an ST1100 in Alberta. It's being shipped to Halifax for us, so we can explore and cross Canada, eventually arriving in BC, where we have close relatives. The Honda dealer says we'll have no issues, but we're concerned that: a.) the bike has no number plate; b.) the seller says it needs no safety certificate and they "...don't require one in Canada...". So here are our questions: 1.) Will it be difficult for us to get a plate in Nova Scotia, given that we do have a BC address? 2.) As ST1100s do have some ABS issues... and replacing the computer is expensive, is the dealer correct that no safety certificate is required? We'd prefer that this _was_ checked out... . Any other advice, please? Touring Australia on a bike? Let us know... You'll enjoy our (free) chalet in one of W.A.'s top tourist towns. (Away July '09 - January '10)

MountainMan 21 Jun 2009 18:26

Hi Oz,

I would recommend buying insurance in BC, the province where the bike is already registered. To obtain insurance in another province, you need to register the bike in that province which usually entails some hassle and potentially sales taxes, deppending on the province.

You will have to jump through some hoops to obtain your BC insurance as you will not be in the province to complete all the forms, etc. but you can plan around all that. Working through a dealer may be what has complicated this portion of it as they are following the letter of the law, can't say for sure.

There are also a couple of other easy solutions to this if they won't work with you to solve that. Feel free to email me and I'd be happy to help. Cheers.

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