How to Get Auto License Plates for a New Car

by Damica Brownswood
itstillruns article image
David McNew/Getty Images News/Getty Images

There are a few reasons why you would need to get license plates for a car. You may be moving to a new state or purchasing a new or used car. Obtaining a license plate for a new car involves registering your vehicle. If you get pulled over, the first thing the police will ask you for is your registration. It is important to have a car registration. This is proof of ownership and proof that you have paid all necessary fees to operate your vehicle. Only then will you be granted your license plates.

Step 1

Visit the department of motor vehicles (DMV) office in your area. In many states, licensing can be done via mail by downloading the appropriate form off the Internet. However, by submitting your materials in person you can obtain your license plates the same day.

Step 2

Provide proof of ownership. The DMV will need a copy of the title. The title of the car is what identifies you as the owner. If you have a car payment, then the lien holder will have the title. Request a form from the DMV to provide to the lien holder. Information from the lien holder stating that you are leasing the vehicle is appropriate.

Step 3

Complete the Application for Certificate of Title. This form will require basic information including your insurance. You must have insurance to operate your vehicle. Check with the states minimum liability insurance requirements.

Step 4

Provide a Certificate of Inspection. Most states will require a state-certified inspection agency to check your car. The inspection agency will verify that the car meets the state requirements for vehicles on the road. For example, customized cars may have issues passing inspection if the car is too low to the ground or if the window tint is too dark. Check the current fee schedule for your state inspection.

Step 5

Submit the Bill of Sale. If the DMV is unable to determine the value of the car, you will have to submit your receipt. Be aware that the state will charge you tax if no tax was paid on your purchase.

Step 6

Pay the appropriate fees. The fee schedule for vehicle registration will vary by state.

Step 7

Get your license plates. Be prepared to wait. Once your paperwork has been submitted, it could take some time to process.

More Articles

article divider