What is a Used Vehicle Information Package?

Posted on April 20, 2021

Over 1.5 million used cars were sold in Canada last year. Of all those sales made in Ontario, every single one needed to have a used vehicle information package.

You may be asking why that's necessary or what that even is. To learn everything you need to know about a used vehicle information package, keep reading!

What Is a Used Vehicle Information Package?

A used vehicle information package is a mandatory report for both buyers and sellers in Ontario. The sellers must purchase the package and give it to the buyer of the vehicle upon purchase. The UVIP provides vehicle history and other important information about the pre-owned vehicle that the seller provides.

Although the report is mandatory, it also provides peace of mind for a buyer. You're able to gather information about all the important parts of the car and know if there is an Ontario safety standards certification.

What Do I Need To Know About the UVIP?

The used vehicle information package comes in various languages. It is a mandatory and useful report to help you make an informed decision about the vehicle you are about to purchase.

Receiving a UVIP from a Seller

As a buyer, it's important to review the used vehicle information package as carefully as possible. This will give you information that you would not otherwise know. With this knowledge, you can then inspect the vehicle in an informed manner to decide between buying the car or looking for another.

Before accepting the UVIP, you should review it to make sure it is suitable and complete. The UVIP should be relatively recent to ensure that there have not been any recalls, maintenance issues, or safety recalls since the time of purchase.

In addition to taking note of the time frame, the vehicle information number (VIN) should be correct, and there shouldn't be any outstanding liens on the vehicle. Once you verify this, you are good to go.

What Kind of Information Does the UVIP Contain?

When you receive the used car package, you will notice a lot of important information. The UVIP will detail many components of the vehicle that are worth looking over as part of the car buying experience. As part of the Ontario vehicle safety inspection checklist, you will get a general idea of the condition of the car.

As part of that information, you should expect to see the following:

  • Vehicle Information
    • You should see the year, make, model, colour, body type, cylinders, and power of the vehicle.
  • Vehicle registration history
    • The registration history section must reference any past vehicle owners and the time of ownership. There should also be mileage and past vehicle locations included in this section. Past vehicle locations must be included as well.
  • Mechanical Information
    • Part of the purpose of the used vehicle information package is to demonstrate the safety of the vehicle. The report will show if the vehicle has received a safety standard certificate from an Ontario safety inspection. A safety standards certificate demonstrates the safety of the vehicle from mechanics to power to steering, however, it does not state the condition of the vehicle.
  • Financial Information
    • Vehicle lien information
      • A lien is placed on a vehicle if it is refinanced upon purchase. There will always be a lien on a vehicle until it is paid off. You can contact the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services to further discuss a lien if it is present on the used vehicle information package.
    • You can also expect to see the wholesale market value for the car. This will give you an idea of what the car is going for and leave you with an idea of how to negotiate a price.
    • Resale tax information and costs will be on the report.
  • A bill of sale
    • This is the receipt of the purchase. This receipt may be handwritten, although it needs to have specific information evident on it. Signatures of both the buyer and seller must be present to complete the transfer of ownership.

How Can I Get a Used Vehicle Information Package?

It is pretty simple to get a UVIP in Ontario. You will need to provide some basic information about who you are and the car you have to receive one.

Information You Need to Provide

In order to receive a UVIP, you need to provide two things:

  • Vehicle identification number or license plate number
  • Ontario driver's license number or name and home address

Places to Get the UVIP

You can obtain a UVIP either online or in person. All Ontario service centres offer vehicle packages at their locations. If you choose to order online, it takes about five business days to receive it.

Used Info Package Website Image

How Much Does a UVIP Cost?

The greatest part of a used car package is that they are affordable. You can purchase a UVIP for around $20, which will save you from fines if you don't. Sellers are expected to buy the UVIP and provide it to the sellers.

It is against the law in Ontario to own a used vehicle without a used vehicle information package, so the $20 cost is better than facing the law.

Is a Used Vehicle Information Package Mandatory in Ontario?

Simply put, yes it is mandatory. If you are selling a car, it is against the law to sell it without a UVIP. It is also illegal to buy a car without receiving a UVIP, and as a buyer or a seller, you can face fines.

If you are fined due to not having a UVIP, the first offence ranges from $100-$500. If you are caught in the same spot again, your fine will increase to $200-$1000.

Understanding the Terms in a UVIP

Car lingo may not be everyone's first language. Take a look at the terms below if you are not sure what a word on the UVIP is referring to.

  • Body Type: The body type of the vehicle refers to the shape of the car. This is where you'll see if it is an SUV, crossover, van, truck, convertible, etc.
  • Cylinders: The more cylinders a car has, the more power it has. The number of cylinders in a car range from four to eight.
  • Power: Power of the vehicle refers to how the engine operates. This could be gasoline, diesel, electric, or a hybrid.
  • Brand: This term is especially tricky. Branding refers to the condition of the vehicle.
    • Salvaged: This vehicle is written as a loss, but if it is rebuilt and re-inspected, it can become a rebuilt brand.
    • Rebuilt: If a salvaged vehicle has passed inspection and structural testing, it becomes a rebuilt status.
    • None: There is no damage.

As a general note when buying a used vehicle, it is best to only buy a vehicle that says "none" as the brand to ensure there are no damage or maintenance problems.

UVIP Frequently Asked Questions

Will There Be a Time I Don't Need a UVIP?

Yes, there are exceptions to the rule as a buyer. If you buy a used vehicle from a registered used dealer, are exchanging taxi license holders, or are transferring between family members, you do not need a used vehicle information package.

There are also exceptions to the rule as a seller. If you are selling a car outside of Ontario, you will not need a UVIP. If it is a donation, a prize, or given to a hospital, school, or service board, there does not need to be a used vehicle information package. 

What Is the Difference between a UVIP and Carfax?

UVIP is a required document by law in Ontario that states necessary historical vehicle information. A Carfax gives detailed information about accidents, safety recalls, and if the car has ever been stolen. A Carfax is not mandatory when buying a car in Ontario.

Since a used vehicle information package does not provide the same information as a Carfax, it is recommended to also purchase a Carfax report.

If you are purchasing a vehicle from a dealer, they should provide the Carfax for free. If they do not, this is a sign to look elsewhere as they may be hiding something wrong with the vehicle, which the used car package wouldn't show.

Does the UVIP Show Accidents?

No, the UVIP will not show any accidents on the report. For a more detailed report, you should order a vehicle history report through Carfax. A Carfax report costs around $40.

Does the UVIP Have Warranty Claims?

The UVIP does not include any warranty claims, but you can access it through a vehicle history report. The report will provide the mileage and factory warranty status.

Does the UVIP Show If the Car Has Had Regular Maintenance?

Yes, the UVIP shows if the car has had maintenance, but it does not show everything done on the car. If you want to know more about the car history regarding maintenance and condition, ordering a Carfax is always helpful. The CARFAX will show all accident data and the place of damage, service history and maintenance records, ownership history, and use of the vehicle.

If you are unsure about the maintenance, it never hurts to get a used vehicle inspected. Most thorough inspections can be done in under an hour, but they do cost money. They will also inspect the condition of the vehicle, mechanics, any damage, steering and power, and conduct a road test.

If you plan to maintain your car regularly, you may want to look into mechanical breakdown insurance for your vehicle. This insurance will cover any repairs necessary for things unrelated to accidents. It will cover engine parts, transmission, brakes, and any electrical components.

How Long Is a Used Vehicle Information Package Good?

Your UVIP will never expire. Once you have the UVIP in your hands, it is good until you buy a different car.

Do I Need a Used Vehicle Information Package to Register My Car?

Yes, you will need a UVIP to register your car. You will need to register the vehicle within six days of purchase. When you go to register the car, you will need to bring your UVIP.

Is It Worth Getting a Used Car If I Have to Get a UVIP?

That's completely up to you! Buying a used car often comes with benefits such as lower prices for more features. Maybe you wanted a cool feature, but the new vehicle was too expensive, but a used one fits your budget.

What Comes After the UVIP?

Although many other things go into purchasing a used car, ensuring you have a used vehicle information package comes first.

Once you've made the purchase and received a used vehicle information package, you've got a few more steps to complete. You're not quite ready to hit the road! You need to grab car insurance first.

It is not smart to drive off the lot without insurance. Purchasing before you leave is the best idea just in case something happens on your way home.

Insurdinary is a leading financial comparison platform that provides great rates for insurance and car loans. At Insurdinary, we want to give you top-notch insurance for your car, and you'll be on the road before you know it. 

Contact us to get a quote today and let us help you with all your insurance needs. 

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