When is a safety certificate required?

If you are selling a registered vehicle, you will need to obtain and display a Queensland safety certificate from the moment you offer the vehicle for sale. The safety certificate must be displayed on a conspicuous part of the vehicle you are offering for sale, including when you:

  • list the vehicle for sale online
  • place the vehicle in public offering it for sale
  • drive the vehicle with a sign on the window, such as “Interested”, “Want this”, Or “Buy Me”Ph 0400123456

Significant fines apply for failing to display a current safety certificate.

When can I sell a vehicle without a safety certificate?

Vehicles that are unregistered or are traded to, or between, licensed motor dealers do not require a safety certificate. Vehicles can still be sold for parts but they must be de-registered before being offered for sale.

Transferring a vehicle without a safety certificate

You don’t need a safety certificate if the vehicle meets one of the exemption criteria. Some exemption situations may include:

  • the disposer being in an exempt area
  • a beneficiary of a deceased estate
  • between spouses, including separated spouses
  • remote locations
Unregistered vehicles 

If your vehicle is unregistered, and your going to register it, you will need a safety certificate.

To be able to legally drive your vehicle to an authorised inspection station to have a safety certificate inspection, you must:

  1. complete a Vehicle Registration Application form (F3518) this form is available from the Queensland Transport Department.
  2. organise a CTP insurance certificate for the 6 or 12 month registration period of the vehicle through a licensed insurer.
  3. ensure the plate(s) and label have been removed from the vehicle—standard Queensland plate(s) must be surrendered to the department or their agent.

You must carry a completed form F3518 and your CTP insurance certificate with you to allow you to legally travel in your vehicle on the shortest and most direct route to:

  • an Approved Inspection Station (AIS) to obtain a safety certificate
  • an authorised gas installer to obtain a gas certificate (if applicable).

Note: If your vehicle does not pass a safety certificate, and the work cannot be done at the AIS, you will need to obtain an unregistered vehicle permit if the vehicle is considered to be in a safe condition. Otherwise the vehicle must be transported or towed.

Once you have obtained a safety certificate and a gas certificate (if applicable) you are permitted to travel directly to a Queensland Transport Department to apply for vehicle registration.


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