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How to Replace a Vehicle Registration in Florida

To access the Florida roads and highways, all drivers must have valid license plates, vehicle decals and car registrations from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV). If at any point in time, any of the three car registration items are lost, stolen or damaged, you must immediately apply for duplicate car registration credentials.

In fact, it is illegal to drive in Florida without a valid car registration, license plates or vehicle decals. If caught driving without one, you may receive a traffic citation, substantial fines, and perhaps,vehicle impoundment.

There are many different types of car registrations in Florida. If any of the following types of registration are lost, stolen or damaged, you will go to your local tax county collector's office to get duplicate vehicle registrations.

  • New car registration
  • Used car registration
  • Motorcycle registration
  • Motor home registration
  • Custom car registration
  • Salvaged car registration

Keep in mind that in order to receive auto registration copies, you must be able to show proof of auto insurance. Florida has specific vehicle minimum liability insurance requirements that all drivers must abide by. If you do not have car insurance or want to get new auto insurance, be sure to look at car insurance quotes online today to avoid getting a harsh penalty fine.

More Important Information on Replacing Car Registrations

How to Replace Car Registration in Florida

Replacing car registrations can be done in person or online.


To replace car registration online in Florida:

  1. Visit the FL DHSMV's online system.
  2. Be ready to provide:
    • Last name
    • Date of birth
    • Florida address
    • Social Security Number
    • FL driver's license number
    • License plate number
  3. In order to receive a car registration copy, you will need a major credit card ready to pay the auto registration replacement:
    • Visa
    • MasterCard
    • American Express
    • Discover

In Person

To replace lost car registration in person, Florida drivers must:

  1. Head to their county tax collector's office. recommends calling ahead to see if you can make an appointment.
  2. Bring with you:
    • Florida drivers license
    • License plate number
    • Proof of car insurance
    • Proof of legal presence (non-U.S. citizens)
      • Green Card a.k.a. I-551 Form
      • I-551 stamp on passport
    • Cash or check (Accepting debit or credit cards vary among offices. Contact your local county tax collector's office to learn which forms of payments are accepted.)

In Florida, it is illegal to drive without car insurance that meets the state's minimum liability requirements. If you need to replace lost car registration or stolen car registration, you must have valid vehicle insurance and be able to provide the auto insurance card. Be sure to examine auto insurance quotes for affordable and comprehensive insurance for cars if you're getting car registration replacement.

Replacing Car Registration: Out-of-State/Military

While a lost car registration can be replaced in person at a local tax collector or license plate office, an online system is also available for Florida drivers who are currently out-of-state or in the military. The information that you will need to provide is as follows:

  • Your full name
  • Address (in Florida)
  • Birth date
  • Social Security Number
  • License plate number
  • Drivers license number

Once you input the necessary information, you will be asked to provide a credit or debit card to pay for the Florida car registration replacement fee. And if out-of-state or in the military, you can also request a replacement license plate and decal remotely. You must mail the following documents to a local county tax collector office to do so:

Dealing with a Damaged Car Registration

In the event your car registration certificate has been damaged, you have one extra step that you need to take to protect your identity. While the FL DMV does not require you to turn in your damaged certificate, you must destroy it yourself and throw it away. Your old vehicle registration is no longer valid the moment you receive your replacement.

How to Replace License Plates and Vehicle Decals in Florida

To replace lost, stolen or damaged license plates in Florida, you may go in person or by mail to order replacements.

Report Your Missing License Plate

In the event that your license plate or vehicle registration was stolen or damaged, be sure to notify local law enforcement. Your tags are directly linked to your driving record, which could be trouble if someone else is driving with your license plate. The police will enter your stolen license plate number into their system, and if someone is stopped with your unique tags, he or she will be apprehended.
If you are concerned about new tickets or violations, you can order a Florida driving record to learn what is currently listed in your driving history.

In Person

To replace Florida license plates in person:

  1. Visit your local county collector's office or accredited tag agency.
  2. Bring a signed and completed Form HSMV 8346 - Application for Replacement License Plates, Validation Decal or Parking Permit.
  3. A copy of your current vehicle registration card.
  4. If your license plate or car decal was stolen or lost, bring a copy of the police report to have the replacement fees waived.
  5. Cash or check to pay the replacement fees. (Call your local tax collector's office to see if they accept major credit or debit cards.)
    • Registration costs vary depending on the type of the car and the taxes of the county you live in

Personalized License Plates

If you are looking to upgrade the look or style of your current license plate, you can apply for new personalized license plates. Customized license plates are popular in Florida as there are hundreds of different tags to choose from, including:

  • Wildlife programs
  • Schools and universities
  • Charities
  • Military
  • Sports
  • Special interests Note: In the event you had a personalized plate or a handicap plate that got lost or stolen, then you must follow the same steps necessary for the replacement of a standard plate, starting with visiting a local county collector's office or accredited tag agency.

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