Here Is How Vehicle Transfer System In Karachi Works – Things To Do And Not To Do

I had to get my 1300 cc used car transferred to my name but hearing several dreadful stories about Karachi vehicle registration office it sounded like a nightmare. Simultaneously I neither had the intent to involve any agent nor to give any bribe. So I personally went through its complete procedure which I’d like to share for the benefit of all concerned.

Also Read: Here’s How You Can Get A Driving License In Karachi

  • Before embarking on this quest make sure you have following documents with you:
    • Your valid CNIC copy
    • Seller’s valid CNIC copy
    • Car book(s) including Running paper
    • Transfer letter duly signed by seller
  • Return file of your vehicle having original sales certificates (green + pink copies), original sales invoice, registration form, paid MV tax receipt (ensure tax is paid for the period)
  • To avoid crowd at registration office leave your home early to reach Civic Center around 8:30 am
  • Since a procedural step involves physical inspection of your to-be-transferred vehicle, so take the same vehicle along
  • To avoid traffic congestion near SSGC building while entering Civic Center take the road behind from University Road end
  • Instead of leaving your vehicle on the road under the care of some apparently fake looking KMC rep, park your car in one of the three designated paid-parking lots behind Civic Center just for Rs.30 (car theft incidents are reported around Civic Center area)
  • Straight away move inside the compound to a photocopy shop ignoring all the agents intercepting you along the way with a sweet smile
  • Ask for a set of vehicle ownership transfer papers from the photocopy guy. You should obtain Rs. 600 worth of printed affidavits, a scanning request form, and some other documents. All this should not cost you more than Rs. 650
  • Ask the photocopier to make a copy of the scanning form along with your CNIC as an inset picture
  • These forms are simple to fill from the details already provided in your vehicle file. However, you may take help from the photocopy guy and pay him some amount say Rs.50
  • Next step is the physical inspection of your car for which you’d have to take it back to the same rear road you came earlier from, and you will get to a table under a sun umbrella located around 100 meters from the first parking lot. Here you’d find government inspectors sitting in plain clothes (you might have to ask someone to reach the right spot there). Try reaching there early as these inspectors close their roadside office around 1 PM to sit inside their closed door office near the same table (don’t hesitate to walk into their office to request for inspection in case you find yourself late)
  • After verifying the number plate and matching the engine and chassis numbers appended on vehicle documents with that written in vehicle engine area the inspector would sign and stamp your documents (one of the forms)
  • Now move to the mezzanine floor of the vehicle registration office which is also known as M.R. Wing (Motor Registration Wing) and que up at the specific window bearing alphabetical series of your vehicle number plate (beware of the pickpockets here)
  • Present your file along with all filled documents to the Excise officers sitting in uniform behind the window glass who after entering some data on his computer might advise you to obtain verification on your file from the wooden door office opposite the window you were standing
  • With confidence enter that room yourself, greet the officer there and request him for verification task by presenting your vehicle file. He should be returning your file in 10-15 minutes with his remarks/initials
  • Return to the same glass window and submit your file again. The officer will ask for the transfer fee (Rs.3000 in my case as it required a new book also). Your file will be retained, and you’ll be given a computerized slip having your details and of your vehicle. Ensure there are no errors on the slip. The next date for recollection of your file will be hand written on the same paper which should be one week later
  • Appear on the given date and present the slip you obtained. Your case should be ready and will be required to move again to the same wooden door office opposite the window you were standing. Usually, an office staff designated by the same officer carries your file as a measure of security
  • With the same confidence again walk into that room yourself, greet the officer there and request him for the task. He should be returning your file in 10-15 minutes with his remarks/ initials
  • Now the file is to be taken to the 4th floor for scanning. They charge Rs.150 for normal time i.e. one day and Rs.400 for urgent taking around 30-45 minutes
  • You’d receive the file from here. Check for any errors including availability of old book (if any)
  • Take home the file and celebrate… YOU DID IT!!
  • So for a 1300cc private car the total cost for transfer of ownership should be 650+50+3,000+150= Rs.3,850

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Here let me confess that the state of affairs I witnessed at various stages of car transfer process made me wonder how difficult it is to go through the process without an agent. The system is plagued with delinquencies tempting you time and again to hire an agent. But with a little stubbornness and a lot of patience, you can do it yourself.

RELATED: Cars for Sale in Karachi


  • Guest

    Now that’s good one. Few points:

    1. The way you have written rear road and front road is incomprehensible. Could you update with a labeled screenshot from google earth?

    2. The officer will try to persuade you to get a new book, as it makes Rs. 500 for the government. Only on some old books, it is written “R.C. NOT TRANSFERABLE” which means “registration certificate not transferable”.
    If it is not written on your book, no need to get a new one, you can get your details updated in “Details of transfers” section in the book. Also, if you don’t get a new book, you don’t get a new running part. Whereas running part is to be meant to be kept in the vehicle and the remaining book should be safely at home (or in case of bank/company, with the company). Therefore you make a photocopy of all the pages of the book on which anything is written, and then get it attested from gazetted officeer or notary public, and keep it in the car. This way you will save Rs. 500.

    3. The writer could use a thesaurus to learn correct use of words. “Stubborn” is not a positive word. The writer means to encourage people to get their own job done. But by inviting them to be more “stubborn”, he lost all his appeal. Nobody wants to turn into a worse person, and those want to, would be doing opposite of this article, not as it encourages.
    He could have written perseverance, which is also one of our national foundational values “استقلال”.

    4. I spend 3200 per transfer. 3200 includes the agent’s fees and fuel etc. other expenses. For people who earn more than 3000-4000 per day. It makes no financial sense to take 2 days leave and lose more than 6000 to get a job done which is worth 3850. Also, the writer did not include the parking fees multiple times, which would be 30+30+….. which would not bother somebody who earns more than 3000-4000 a day. but for the total disclosure of facts.
    The agent pays tax for more than 1000 vehicles of our company every year. Since some vehicles have yearly tax of 37000 or even more, the company pays him millions in cash. He is far more trustworthy than any admin/transport department employee taking 14000 per month. Business with him is safe because he regularly pays bhatta to all mafias involved around that area, so nobody is going to loot him.

    Not only I spend less money than you, I save myself the time, effort an bother too. There are other more important and charitable works I can do in the time I would take off from office. Moreover, I happen to help feed the family of the agent. He is a specialist who can gets so many transfers done in a single day. Unlike me and you, who need 2 days to get a single transfer done.

    5. Agents with sweet smile? You mean those mawa and gutka ridden teeth?

  • MSUH

    I heard that new owner has to come with current owner, otherwise they create issues even if you have the copy of cnic of current owner, is it true ? current owner means owner on paper. But agent can get this done without the presence of previous owner.

  • munib

    Excellent work by the writer. Well done. This will be so helpful for the new ones.

  • munib

    Your corrections are appreciated but bro us bichare ne bi bari mehnat se ye sb likha tha. Apne toh uski surgery ker daali.


  • Imran Baloch

    this chap ‘Guest’ is genius. u wl always find very detailed reviews from him. gotta admire his corrections.

  • Saeed Akhtar

    Dear Guest,

    Thank you for your analysis which I encourage should be done continuously to help improve articles on this forum. I’d try replying your arguments in the same series as numbered.

    1. Front road is Sir Shah Suleman Rd while I couldn’t find the name of rear road even by zooming on google map. However, per your advice I have taken a screen shot and placed red arrows plus an asterisk for better understanding.

    2. Thanks for addition of information

    3. I agree with the negative connotation of this word but the problem is I don’t recall using it. Wonder how it landed there! ‘Perseverance’ would have been much better.

    4. I was tempted to write a full article over this point not for just this office but other analogous
    ones too. However I would rather just summarize that agents anywhere are never part of the original official plan. They creep in because of the felonies of system hence maliciously nurturing the prevailing inadequacies. Since they are part of a felonious system so at least I would never support them no matter how many dependents they feed or how much time I expend as an Opportunity Cost. There is however always an option of sending in your man who if capable can do the job himself on owner’s behalf; the ‘right way’.

    5. Perhaps my sentence requires rephrasing as..

    “Straight away move inside the compound to a photocopy shop. With a sweet smile ignore all the agents intercepting you along the way”.


  • Saeed Akhtar

    Hahaha Munib that was hilarious 🙂

  • Guest again

    Dear writer, thank you for your response.

    About the agent mafia: In many situations, agents are part of the official plan. Many offices do not involve in public dealing. A good example is Saudi embassy, who have authorized agents in every country of the world, they only do public dealing with overseas Saudi citizens, every other document goes through authorized agents.

    Similarly, the immigration offices of New Zealand, Canada, Australia etc. have some approved agencies. They tell you that you can apply through approved immigration agent. Directly applying is also possible. They mention the fact that agent has been appointed because that firm can help to explain the procedure and make a strong case. Otherwise the institution does not have enough resources to keep explaining to everybody, however certain care has been taken and no information of importance has been withheld or obscured. In this situation, if somebody wants to file, they can do on their own also.

    Another example is that whenever you go to court, you can hire a lawyer. A lawyer has the government’s licence to represent his.her client in the court. Therefore there is a list of approved agents who can be hired by prospective clients to act as agent in the court. Otherwise if the person feels confident and well-versed enough, he/she can represent himself/herself in the court. And it happens, because some people cannot afford counsel, they represent themselves in the court, without help from approved agent.

    The main purpose of embassies hiring agents is also the same. They do not have enough resources to deploy in so many countries who then explain to each and every walk-in client. Yet they can security-check and train a few local people, and those people can hire a big number of staff, you can think why Saudi embassy has this system: because of the number of people who go to Saudia for pilgrimage and job. As per OEC yearbook 2013-14, 49% of all possible Pakistani expats, expatriate to Saudia. Now compare that to the embassy of Bangladesh where so many people are standing in long lines outside, while the public dealing timings are limited, and the clerical staff is frustrated at the ignorance of those (nondigest persons) who have to go there.

    Uk embassy also has an approved agent, Gerry’s Fedex. UAE embassy also have approved agents, where you go and get your job done by people who speak your language and they also have no security threat from random people.

    The idea of having approved agents is not only applicable for embassy/foreigner scenario. To participate in stock market, first you need an account with a stock broker. The stock broker should be registered with CDC, SECP and the stock exchanges in Pakistan. Therefore they serve as approved agents. Should you have anything to do with the stock market, your query, instruction goes through the stock broker. You need not personally go into the stock exchange and ask for things. A person who is not aware of related financial terms can easily pay a consultant in the stock brokerage for some explanations. Or it may be part of the package. But can the SECP, KSE, ISE, LSE hire so many staff to do this? Do they really have the space in their office? Would they want to do this when the staff can be put to other good use?

    It was high time government gave licences to “agents” for passport, CNIC, MV tax, MV registration etc. This would formalize the procedure, hold the agents to liability, reduce the burden on government officers (remember govt officers are paid by you while somebody hiring and agent for extra help pay themselves for the services), improve the efficiency of existing staff (they don’t have to explain so many things to each person at the cost of taxpayer sponsored time), and regularize a legitimate source of income [it is legitimate because the agents do not provide illegal service, they only provide reading and writing in case the person is illiterate, you may know only 3.28% of Pakistanis have 12-years or equivalent education (source: Hussain, 2015), which is the basic level to make somebody capable of performing all citizenship responsibilities. Therefore the agents should be regularized, in this way if an agent tries to aid an illegal activity, he/she can be punished accordingly too.]

    Since you tend to write an article on this topic too, please keep in consideration my ideas. I have full confidence you will come up with something uniquely useful like this article.

  • AQ

    Do you know these agents actually get work done with foul money they pay from your pocket to the officers working there? You are also contradicting on the Point no. 3. because such acts do not go in parallel to the “Foundation values” of this country or perhaps any country unless unlawful acts are allowed in their law.

    Your point of view is to save time and money by hooks or crooks which means there is no moral significance in the methods you are suggesting to the writer which is not what people should encourage or follow.

  • Faraz Ahmed Dar

    Saeed, thank you soooooooo much bro. I am new here in Pakistan and just got me an Reborn ’10. This article is very helpful. Cheer mate.

  • Khalid Kamil

    Please give me detail of amount for transfer of HYUNDAI Santro along with required documents.

  • Glen Scott

    Awesome information. Thanks alot.

  • Aphawn Xiya

    I bought a car from a lawyer and he is saying that the 1st owner of the car bought it in the name of a company where he works the reason behind that the guy doesn’t have any NTN and later he transfer it on his name. Who will be the first owner the company or the guy who bought it in the name of company because of i have only one book .

  • Syed Abbas Ali Shah

    i just sold my corolla 1.6 2013 – it was on bank name so 3 in a half year tax will be on filer basis so i paid that tax it was around 22000 then i asked the concern to transfer the car on my name he said transfer fee is 45000 yes 45000 is it true

  • If you are trying to get papers done for a stolen car using hooks and crooks then it would be bribery and stealing.
    If you are saving your time to do something legal like get a car registered and pay the taxes instead of driving it on someone else’s name, then it can be considered a legal service.
    So they point of saving time for busy people is important. However, I would caution to first know the laws so you know how much you are paying for the “Services” to have someone else stand in line for you.
    Companies have people to do paper work also. We call them Government Dealers.
    You might call them admin / employees.

  • AQ

    I think You need to learn the meaning of Bribe and Service. Bribe is unjust act, its kind of corruption if it might have crossed your mind. The guy you are wiling to pay extra to save time is being appointed to do his job on the pay he has been given. When you pay extra to get your work done instead of someone who did not pay extra that is called injustice because there is not such rule in the public service department on that. if something is no the rule that means its is not lawful. The rule of Express delivery and Normal delivery is written in rules and they follow that. if they don’t that means they are unjust with their work. if they follow by taking more money from you and prioritising your work over the other people that means its unjust and bribe thats unlawful and falls in under corruption which is a crime. Please don’t promote crime. The same mentality has took them to level that they think of Bribe as their right.

  • Omar Ahmed

    Dear AQ and Khawar Nehal, from the outside I can see where you are come from. Both of your arguments are logical and thought provoking. As a law abiding, tax paying and practicing Muslim, I would never consider gaining unfair advantage over others by paying extra ie bribe.
    On another hand, there are some limitations and difficulties which push the boundaries of a person’s threshold of patience, fortitude and resources to an extent where the bribe turns in ‘extortion’. It is discussed by scholars for formalities which are not illegal and in fact are basic rights of a citizen, where such bribes are levied upon the individual as fees, the payer is not a sinner per se as he is forced (in this case, almost) to pay them or forget about the work in question. My main argument is that yes, I certainly feel that we are feeding the vicious cycle by paying these agents but on the other hand, how many people have the grit, patience and resources to fight against the system as outlined in the article. I once went to transfer my vehicle sans agent and in one of the steps listed above, my attempt was thwarted and hijacked by an agent on the pretext of a crossed mark on the CNIC of the original seller. I am not in a position to undertake the same Khawari simply because of my current scenario (can’t find 2 days from other commitments). Economically speaking, I would not spend more and then justify the agent culture. I have gone against agents in many places before like passport, driving license, etc by paying less but also taking more Khawari just to fight for the same principles AQ mentioned. I think the transfer of vehicle ownership is at another level. Probably closer to Police, Court and KMC/KDA in its obnoxious trap and sinister booby traps for the common man.
    Lastly, I would say the diehards and the brave should be lauded for taking the harder route. Still, don’t deplore those who go via agents because they have legitimate concerns too and are not criminals themselves. Had the process been any easier, I am sure a considerable number would have preferred to do it themselves. After all, isn’t it us only who stand in hours for their CNIC, passport and match tickets!

  • saad “saad” ahmed19

    this is pakistan and some Govt Departments make it habbit of putting red tape to make make money so welcome to Pakistan and stop complianing if u want to live here

  • Maqsood Ahmed

    car running paper is lost but have all other complete documents book and every thing can i transfer it to my name plz help

  • Rayan DOn

    great work of listing the process…thanks jazak Allah