Few weeks ago, we heard the news about Excise and Taxation Department of Islamabad started issuing new Smart Vehicle Registration cards for the new car buyers. The card will be provided to the new buyer of used cars as well if the car is being transferred. A friend recently sold his car and was looking to transfer his car to new owners as soon as possible but, unfortunately, couldn’t come up with time. But fortunately for me, he mentioned his plan, and I said I would like to tag along. The purpose was to observe the process of the car transfer first hand so that I can report it to you guys with as much detail as possible.
I had no experience of how Islamabad ET office works, or how do you go about getting car transferred to your name or the new owner. It was an opportunity for me to learn something new. The first thing that I came to know about the process is that now you can’t make transfer letter on a plain paper or even an affidavits (stamp paper) like in good ol’ days. A new transfer letter is now being issued by ETO called T.O form (Transfer Order). It is a computerized ETO issued piece of paper stating that you have you sold your car, and it can now be transferred to the new owner. The intention behind the new form of transfer letter was to make the transfer process transparent and was done in efforts to curb the illegal car trade (theft/smuggling/possible terrorism activities). The ETO started the new letter back in 2013.
For getting the transfer letter, you are asked to give an application on which ETO issues you the letter. It is basically an application stating that applicant is the current owner of the vehicle, along with the vehicle details, like its name, maker, chassis and engine number, etc., and wants its transfer letter. Following is how the application looks like. Never mind the quality of paper or wrong Urdu. It will give you a hint about the required information.
When you enter the premises, you might get overwhelmed looking at the rush and chaos. My first expression of the ETO office was that it’s mismanaged. At least it looks like that. The office used to be in F-8 Markaz, but has been shifted to H-8 for some time now. There is a board next to entrance gate that says, “Agent hazraat ka andar aana mamnuu hai” (Agents are not allowed to enter). There should be a board or map telling the general public how to navigate through the windows of the office. There isn’t a photo state machine inside the premises. Across the road under the Metro Bus bridge, you will find folks with scanner printers in the backside of their cars that can make copies for you. In the office itself, you go to one window to another and ask governmental employees who look like they really hate their job, but they do help. They might not smile at you like McDonalds employees, but you won’t get lost. When you enter the building, you will find a small room on your left. It has three windows, and you will get your required form and information from either of these windows. You need to inquire and find out what to find where. Since we were there for transfer, the documents mentioned on the board are as follows.
The documents required for the transfer of the ownership of the vehicle as these:
- Application for transfer of ownership.
- Photocopy of NIC of the Applicant.
- Form ‘F’
- Photocopy of NIC of the Seller.
- Transfer Letter
- T.O Form
First, you need to get the T.O or transfer order form sorted. As a seller, your priority should be to get the new transfer order. That will legally take the vehicle’s liability off of you. So my friend bought the form for Rs 10/- from the first window (Information Desk). He filled the details,and submitted the application form at desk number 15. They will ask you to wait, and after some time, you will get your printed transfer order form from desk number 23. At that desk you will pay them Rs 100/- for the printed form. You can see what it looks like below.
You will take the printed T.O back to desk number 15, and they will confirm the details. It is called ‘hazri lagwana’ as a general term. They enter your details and recheck your documents with the T.O form. If the buyer is with you, they take signatures and fingerprints of both of the seller and buyer. Witnesses will enter their details, stating the sale was done in their presence. This makes the T.O form legally binding.
Now the seller is free. That car is not his/her headache. You can give that T.O form with all the verified details to the buyer. Buyer will deposit the required transfer fee, and along with the copy of challan fee, the new T.O and registration book of the car, submit the documents at the desk. They will check the documents, and give a receipt for the date when you can get the book back. You can pay extra and get yourself one of those new Smart Vehicle Registration Card.
Here is the transfer fee schedule:
The whole process took around 45 minutes. And doesn’t cost more than few hundred rupees. The purpose of this blog is to help you guys understand the process. People look at the rush inside the office and start panicking; thinking don’t know how much it would cost or how long the process will be. An agent will charge you something like Rs 4000 for this otherwise inexpensive process. No doubt at rush hours, you will see lines of people paying token fees for their cars, but that has nothing to do with transferring. You have to wait and stand in line to get the things done. But it is much cheaper than paying the agents to that for you. We hope this will help you guys to some extent.