Do you want to know how many cars you can sell in Missouri without a dealers license? If YES, here is everything you need to know about selling cars in Missouri. In Missouri, vehicle owners sell thousands of vehicles every year. As a seller, there are certain things you must know before you enter into the sale of a vehicle. When a transaction takes place between two private parties in the State, both of those parties are expected to take care of some tasks. This helps for a smooth sale of the vehicle.

How Many Cars Can You Sell in Missouri Without a Dealers License?

The Missouri dealer license is required from anyone who wants to sell more than 6 vehicles per year. However, selling a car in Missouri is quite easy, as long as you have a game plan and a good system. The state of Missouri’s Department of Revenue has streamlined the process of selling a car for you. Even when you are not required to have a dealer’s license or you sell below 6 cars per year, there is a list of licensing requirements that you have to fulfill so that you are allowed to launch your operations as a dealer in the state.

Just like in other states in the United States, Missouri needs specific documents as well as paperwork that you must fill out even when you don’t sell up to 6 cars per annum. One of the most important ones is to post a Missouri auto dealer bond, which guarantees you will follow the law.

How to Obtain a Missouri Dealers License

In Missouri, you are only mandated to get a dealer’s license if you sell more than 6 cars a year. To obtain a Missouri Dealers License involves just these simple steps:

1. Choose the Dealer License Type you Need

First note that the authority issuing Missouri car dealer licenses is the Motor Vehicle Bureau at the state Department of Revenue. The possible license types that you can obtain from it are the following, according to the kind of vehicles that you can sell under each of them:

  • Franchise Motor Vehicle (MV) Dealer – new vehicles under a franchise agreement
  • Franchise Powersport Dealer – new powersport vehicles under a franchise agreement
  • Public Motor Vehicle Auctions – making public auctions
  • Recreational Motor Vehicle Dealer – RV vehicles
  • Trailer Dealer – trailers
  • Used Motor Vehicle (MV) and Powersport Dealer – used vehicles and powersport vehicles
  • Wholesale Motor Vehicle Auctions – making wholesale auctions
  • Wholesale Motor Vehicle Dealer – selling wholesale
  • Boat Dealer – boats

2. Attend a Missouri Dealer Educational Seminar

After deciding on the exact type of license you want to acquire, you will need to attend the state mandated Missouri Dealer Educational Seminar. Note that a typical dealer license training class takes about 4 hours. There is no test in your dealer class, it is just an informal question and answer session but you are mandated by the Department of Revenue to sit through the entire 4 hour dealer training class.

When you complete your training course, Missouri Dealer Seminars will issue your Dealer Educational Seminar Certificate of Completion that is necessary to obtain your Missouri Dealers License. You will need to include your Certificate of Completion when you submit your application.

3. Complete and Submit your Dealer Application

Once you have collected all necessary documents and completed the state application, you can submit the form and additional paperwork online, or by sending it via mail to:

Motor Vehicle Bureau

Dealer Licensing Section

Post Office Box 43

Jefferson City, Missouri 65105-0043

The licensing fees that you have to cover are:

  • $150 annual license fee (all license types but boat dealers)
  • $80 annual license fee for boat dealers
  • $50 dealer plate fee (first one)
  • $10.50 for each additional dealer plate

4. Pass a Criminal Background Check

You are expected in Missouri to pass an online criminal background check before you obtain your Missouri Dealer License. The background check must be conducted online through the Missouri Highway Patrol. The background check will cost $13.00 for each person on the license and each person on the license must pass the background check.

If you are a resident of a state other than Missouri, you are expected to submit a current background check from your State Highway Patrol or State Bureau of Investigations. All background checks must be less than 30 days old at the time of application. Be sure to include a copy of your background check in your dealer application packet.

5. Register Your Dealership Name With The Missouri Secretary of State

At this point, you are mandated to register your business name with the Missouri Secretary of State. This must be done before your receive your Missouri Dealer’s License.  You can register your business name with the Missouri Secretary of State by calling 573-751-3827 or visit

6. Provide A Dealer Surety Bond Or Irrevocable Letter Of Credit

At this point, you are expected to provide either an original dealer surety bond in the amount of $50,000 or an irrevocable letter of credit in the amount of $50,000. Note that the price for your surety bond will depend on your credit score. Higher credit scores equal lower surety bond prices. If you have a bad credit history, your bond pricing can be much higher.

Irrevocable letters of credit are issued by banks and the fees vary greatly so check with your banker. The Missouri Department of Revenue requires either a bond or letter of credit to protect you against any legal claims against your dealership by unsatisfied customers. Don’t worry, if you operate your business with complete integrity, you will probably never have to use it.

7. Undergo the Missouri Dealer License Renewal Every Year

Note that the licensing period for auto dealers runs from January 1st to December 31st.  So, you have to renew your license every year. You have to submit your renewal application before October 30th to avoid a $25 penalty fee. If you send it after December 31st, the penalty is $50.

Facts You Must Know About Selling Cars in Missouri

As of January 1, 2006, the seller of a motor vehicle, all-terrain vehicle or a trailer, must report the sale within 30 days to the Department of Revenue. In addition, vehicle sellers, other than Missouri licensed dealers, must fill out as well as complete a Notice of Sale (Form 5049) or Bill of Sale (Form 1957) form to report the sale. When you’re selling a car in Missouri, note that any individual interested can obtain a vehicle history report on it.

So, instead of leaving this task to the potential buyer, you can acquire this document and present it to the buyer for easier and quicker transaction. Note that this history report provides any details about past accidents, odometer fraud, or any instances of theft. In Missouri, you have to consider this as a very important step in selling a car. As a car seller, getting this report gives you merit and shows you as a trustworthy seller.

After selling a vehicle in Missouri, you are mandated to notify the Department of Revenue (DOR) within 30 days. It’s the law! For a newer vehicle, the Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR) issues a title that has a tear-off section to report the sale. If you have an older title that does not have the tear-off section, you still need to report the sale. You can do this by filling out the Notice of Sale (Form 5049) form.

At this point, you can mail it to the address on the form. You can also submit a Bill of Sale (Form 1957) to the Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR). Note that if you fail to report the sale of a vehicle, you could face a fine of up to $200.


No matter the amount of car you plan to sell in Missouri, it is advisable you first seek a dealer’s license as it presents you with a lot of benefits – most importantly, peace of mind. Also, when you receive your license you will be able to enter any auto auction in the country, buy any vehicle without titling it, then sell it anywhere in the country for a profit.