How to Apply for Car Registration in Rhode Island
You must obtain Rhode Island vehicle registration credentials as soon as you purchase, acquire or inherit an automobile from a dealership. Without valid DMV registration documents from the Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV), you cannot legally operate your newly acquired automobile on public roads and highways.
To explore the steps you must take to register your new vehicle with the Rhode Island DMV, review the information below.
How to Get Rhode Island DMV Car Registration Credentials
“Where can I apply for RI car registration near me?” you may wonder. To obtain registration credentials for your newly obtained vehicle, you must visit your local DMV office to submit your application and pay any required fees. You cannot register a vehicle online or by mail.
When obtaining vehicle registration records for your car, truck, SUV or minivan, you must provide the DMV agent with a completed application and payment for the required fee. However, your other application materials will vary depending on whether you purchased the vehicle from a Rhode Island dealer or private party.
Learn more about these types of situations in the sections below.
Private Party Sales
If you purchased a vehicle from a private seller, you must submit certain documents to the DMV to get your RI auto registration. This includes the following:
- The vehicle’s original certificate of title
- Proof of automobile insurance
- A sales tax form
- Photo identification
In some cases, you may need to submit additional documents, such as proof of a vehicle identification number (VIN) check.
Download our free guide for a detailed list of the documents you need to obtain a new registration in Rhode Island depending on your situation.
To obtain new car registration credentials after purchasing a vehicle from a Rhode Island dealer, the documents needed to process the application include:
- A manufacturer’s statement of origin.
- Proof of automobile insurance.
- Photo identification.
- A sales tax form.
Depending on the situation, the vehicle may need to undergo a VIN inspection.
Rhode Island Vehicle Registration Fees and Taxes
You must pay car registration fees and sales tax when you register your newly acquired vehicle with the Rhode Island DMV, unless you are exempt from paying sales tax on the automobile. For instance, you may qualify for an exemption if you receive the vehicle as a gift from an immediate family member.
If a non-immediate family member gifts the vehicle to you, you must provide the DMV agent with a gift affidavit along with any other required application materials.
Once you obtain your new registration, you will need to complete the registration renewal process every year thereafter.
Download our free guide to see if you qualify for a Rhode Island vehicle registration fee waiver.