How to sell a car in France

This page has been updated to reflect the streamlined process – introduced by the French government in August 2017 – for selling a second-hand car. The older, three-page declaration de cession d’une vehicle form, Cerfa 13754, has been replaced by a two-page version, Cerfa 15776, available on our website through this link. This page explains the new procedure for selling a second-hand car privately. This updated process comes into effect at the beginning of November 2017.

How not to sell a used car in France

Our original page cited the example of one of our clients who sold a camper van but discovered five years later, following an accident involving the van’s purchaser, that he was being held responsible by the police and by the buyer’s insurance company simply because he hadn’t completed a declaration de cession d’une vehicle at the time he sold the van. Although we were able to help out, our client was mired in a lengthy process to prove that he had indeed sold the van five years earlier. Follow our advice if you wish to avoid this kind of problem!

The law on selling your used car

French law states that you must declare the sale of your used car by correctly completing a document entitled a declaration de cession d’une vehicle. This needs to be completed irrespective of the value or age of the vehicle.

The old document had three pages: one for the seller, one for the buyer and one for your local préfecture. The new version now has just two pages: one for the seller and one for the buyer. Your local prefecture no longer plays any role in this process. Instead, l’Agence Nationale des Titres Sécurisés (ANTS) performs this function. Their sleek new website enables you to inform them accordingly.

A step-by-step guide to selling your car privately in France

# Who What When
1 The seller The seller needs to provide to the buyer a certificate de situation administrative (certificate de non gage). This is an official document easily available on-line. It states that there is no reason known (debt, theft, etc.) why the vehicle being sold cannot be transferred to a new owner. This process is free and can be accomplished on-line at the Système d'Immatriculation des Véhicules mini-site, which will result in your being able to print the required certificate (assuming the vehicle concerned is unencumbered, etc. This certificate will be dated. You need to have completed this no more than 14 days before the date of sale of the vehicle. No more than 14 days before the sale date
2 The seller The seller of the car needs to give the buyer le certificate d’immatriculation (carte gris). The seller must strike two diagonal lines across the CG saying "vendu" followed by the date and time and his/her signature. The day of the sale
3 Both the seller and the buyer Both pages of Cerfa 15667 (from this website) need to be completed and co-signed by both parties. Seller and purchaser need to retain their own pages of the form. The day of the sale
4 The seller Within 14 days of the sale, the seller of the vehicle must complete the on-line declaration on the Agence Nationale des Titres Sécurisés (ANTS)website. (The seller will need to create their own ANTS account to accomplish this. Then look for the "Je vends ou je donne mon véhicule" link.) Once this has been done, a code de cession will be provided to the seller. No more than 14 days after the sale
5 The seller The seller must communicate this code de cession to the buyer. No more than 15 days after the code de cession has been received
6 The buyer The buyer must then, in his/her own right, inform ANTS of this code using their website at the Agence Nationale des Titres Sécurisés (ANTS)website. (The buyer will need to create their own ANTS account to accomplish this.) There will then be a delay of up to a month before the new carte gris for the buyer’s new vehicle is issued. No more than 15 days after the seller receives the code de cession

This procedure can also be accomplished on your behalf by garages and showrooms, so the above is effectively for private sales.

Don’t panic! This looks complicated, but is not. The forms are simple. The process is clear. Good luck! If in doubt, don’t hesitate to give us a ring.