Whether you are buying or selling a trailer, you need to make sure that you complete the change of ownership process at the time of transaction.

Otherwise, you could find that someone else still legally owns your shiny new trailer… or you still own something you no longer have possession of!

It also keeps the trailer legal to be driven on the road.

So, how do you go about the change of ownership process?

Read on and we’ll detail each step you need to undertake to ensure the ownership of the trailer is correctly reflected.

How to Arrange Change Of Ownership For Your Trailer

Why Do A Change Of Ownership?

Regardless of whether you are the buyer or the seller, it is vital to do a change of ownership when a trailer changes hands.

If you are the seller and the new owner does not re-register the trailer in their name, you could still be liable for any fines or penalties that are incurred after the sale takes place.

And if you are the buyer, the seller still has a legal claim over your trailer if the ownership is not registered in your name.

So, it is vital to make sure you undertake the change of ownership process at the time of the sale.

Checking The Basics First

Even though a trailer cannot be operated on the road without a towing vehicle, it still needs to be registered to be driven on NZ roads. So, when you are buying or selling a trailer, you need to ensure that it is legally registered.

The registration process ensures there is a national record of your trailer, and that it meets all the safety standards to be driven legally.

Also, be fully aware of the state of the trailer before any money changes hands. If you are buying it second hand, ensure you sight the trailer and ensure it is roadworthy first. If you are selling second hand, it is your responsibility to make the buyer aware of the trailer’s condition.

How Do You Change The Ownership Of A Trailer

It is important to note that money changing hands does not signify an official change of ownership, even if the seller provides a receipt. There is a standard process that needs to be followed and the NZTA must be notified.

You can complete that process:

Regardless of which method you choose, both the seller and the buyer will need to acknowledge and confirm the ownership change for it to be recognised legally.

What Needs To Happen

If you want to complete the process online:

  • This method is great for sellers and buyers as you can instantly change the ownership at any time of the day or night.
  • You’ll need to have your NZ driver’s license on hand and an electronic payment method
  • The buyer and the seller can fill the necessary forms together before the trailer changes hands.
  • The seller logs in and says a sale is about to take place.
  • The buyer then logs in and confirms the process, pays the fee and everything is complete!

If you’d rather complete the Change of Ownership in person:

  • If you’re like us and like to deal with people face to face, head down to your local NZ Post outlet or NZTA Licensing centre and fill out the appropriate form.
  • The seller completes an MR13A form, and the buyer completes an MR13B form which are shared with NZTA to confirm the ownership change.
  • Provide proof you have your NZ Driver’s License or you can use another form of identification such as a passport.
  • It is usually the responsibility of the buyer to pay the change of ownership fee which costs around $10.00.
  • Provide the seller with a receipt to show you have completed your end of responsibilities.

What Happens Next?

The NZ Transport Agency will take care of the rest and ensure the buyer receives the new certificate of registration either by post or email.  Usually, they will also let the seller know the buyer’s notification has been processed by them.

Finally, the buyer will want to add the last piece of the puzzle by ensuring the trailer is up to scratch with insurance before hitting the road safely.

Want to go larger or need some accessories?  Browse our website for all your trailer parts and needs or come see us in person at your Lucca Trailer store!