Safety certificates are required if you want to sell a car that is registered in Queensland. 

It is confirmation that a vehicle meets minimum safety standards. 

These inspections are not required to identify all defects so vehicles can have a valid safety certificate but still have major mechanical issues. 

Before you commit to purchasing a vehicle check that the certificate is valid and has enough time left on it to complete the registration transfer. You cannot transfer registration without one.

It is the seller’s legal responsibility to provide the certificate and complete any repairs required to make the vehicle roadworthy. You should never agree to get your own safety certificate as repair costs will then be your responsibility. 

A seller does not legally need to provide a safety certificate for an unregistered vehicle, but it is always recommended that you request one.

Visit the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) > Safety Certificates for more information.

Certificate validity

  • Private sale - two months or 2,000km (whichever comes first) 
  • Dealers - three months or 1,000km (whichever comes first) 

Vehicles fitted with LPG

Any vehicle fitted with LPG (gas) requires a gas certificate to ensure the equipment is safe. As with the safety certificate, it must be issued in order for a vehicle to be registered or transferred. It is the responsibility of the seller. 

Suspect certificates

If you think your vehicle has a suspicious safety certificate you need to take the following steps:
  • Act quickly and avoid driving the car. 
  • Contact the person who issued the certificate as a first step
  • If this does not resolve the issue contact Transport and Main Roads on 13 23 90 to find a nearby Transport Inspector
  • Do not repair the car until it has been inspected by a Transport Inspector. 
If the issuer has erred they may be fined or prosecuted, but you will need to take your own legal action to recover any repair costs.

For legal advice on car purchases, contact our motoring advice team.

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