How to Renew Your Car Registration

How to Renew Your Car Registration

All drivers need to complete a car registration renewal every year or so to be able to drive their cars on the road. A vehicle registration is proof that a driver meets the state’s insurance requirements and has paid any necessary fees.

Usually, you need to renew your registration every year. However, some states offer two- and three-year registrations.

The renewal process depends on your state. Some states let you renew online while others make you do it in person. There are also documents you need to show for the tag renewal, such as proof of insurance and vehicle inspection.

When to Start a Car Registration Renewal

Before deciding if you want to renew your registration online, in person or by mail, it is important to know the right time to do so.

Most states send drivers a reminder notice through the mail several weeks before their registration expiration dates. Drivers can then mail back the forms with payment to complete the renewal.

For a license plate renewal, you may also be able to do a car reg check. This lets you see when your registration is expiring and if you should renew it now or wait longer. Not all states offer the car registration check feature. However, you can find out this information by contacting your state’s motor vehicles department and giving your vehicle information.

Note: You may not be eligible for a renewal if you fail to pay court-ordered child support payments or have a suspended registration or license.

Car Registration Renewal Methods

If you check your vehicle registration status online and find out that yours is close to its expiration date, the next step is picking a renewal method. The most common ways to renew a registration are:

  • Through the state DMV’s online portal
  • In person
  • By mail

The steps for a car registration renewal include getting your documents together, submitting them to a DMV office or representative and paying any fees. Just be sure to renew before your deadline or during a grace period. If you don’t, you could be on the hook for extra fees.