Salesman filing document

In Queensland, it’s a requirement of selling a vehicle that you have a roadworthy certificate (RWC). This means your vehicle needs to have passed a safety inspection by an authorised person. Often, there is a temptation to circumvent these rules and offload your vehicle without having the relevant checks done. If the buyer is fine with that, you may think the risks aren’t much to worry about.

The other practice that some people consider is forging a safety certificate, or obtaining one from somewhere other than an Approved Inspection Station (AIS). However, here are some reasons why you should never get a dodgy roadworthy certificate.

You can be fined

If you sell a vehicle in Queensland without a safety certificate, you can be fined over $650. The rule has recently changed (September 2021), stating that you no longer need to have a safety certificate when listing a vehicle for sale. However, you must have obtained a safety certificate by the time you dispose of the vehicle.

Most vehicles, including cars, motorcycles, trailers (including caravans) and other vehicles with up to 4,500kg gross vehicle mass (GVM) are subject to the safety certificate laws.

Unsafe vehicles are a traffic risk

The other reason, which should be quite obvious, is that unsafe vehicles pose a risk to not only the new owner of the vehicle, but the general public too. While a safety inspection is not the same as a full mechanical inspection, it does check many components such as brakes, tyres, steering and suspension. These are all components that cause major injury, damage or worse if they fail while a vehicle is being driven.

Potential legal issues in the future

Let’s say you obtained a dodgy RWC, or didn’t get one at all. You then sold a car, and perhaps the new owner didn’t understand the rules about safety certificates. It’s not their responsibility to obtain a certificate – that onus falls on you as the seller.

Now, imagine the new owner is driving your old car a month later, they’re involved in a collision and the seatbelt fails. The new owner is injured far more seriously than they would have been if the seatbelt functioned correctly.

This is an issue that would have been picked up during an authorised roadworthy inspection. Now, while we can’t pre-empt how the justice system would deal with this issue, there is certainly potential for you to be held liable because you didn’t obtain the correct safety documentation before selling your vehicle. 

Get your easy roadworthy inspection today

Totally Mobile Roadworthy provides fast, convenient inspections and we even come to you. No waiting around at inspection centres, just an easy check and we can issue your certificate on the spot. Contact us today, and make sure you’re compliant with safety certificate laws.

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