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How to Register a Vehicle in New York

New York law requires that motor vehicle owners must register their vehicle with the New York Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) before taking it on the road. Both new and second-hand vehicles must be registered, regardless of whether they are purchased from a dealer or an individual. In addition, New York residents who have registered their vehicle in another state must register their vehicle in New York. The initial vehicle registration must be done in person, but registration renewals can be done in person, online or by mail or telephone.

If you are new to New York State, you must register your vehicle within thirty days of arrival.


If you are registering a motor vehicle in New York for the first time, you must complete the following steps:

  1. New York requires you to show proof of insurance when you register your vehicle. Your insurance must be taken out in New York - insurance from another state is not valid in New York.
  2. Collect the necessary paperwork. If you bought your vehicle from a dealer, then the dealer will have sent the necessary paperwork to the New York Department of Motor Vehicles. In all other circumstances you will need to collect the following additional papers:
  3. Proof of Ownership. In New York this consists of a Bill of Sale and the vehicle title.
  4. If your vehicle title certificate was printed after December 1994, it will show your odometer and damage disclosures on the back. Otherwise, you will need the previous owner to fill out Form MV-103.
  5. An Application for Registration form.
  6. Proof of Sales Tax paid ( Form DTF-804), purchase price or Sales Tax Exemption (Form DTF-803). If you have bought your vehicle privately, you will need to complete form DTF-802.
  7. You must provide proof that your vehicle meets the "California" emission standard, or provide proof of exemption.
  8. Proof of your identity.
  9. Visit your local DMV Office with your completed forms.
  10. You can claim a tax deduction for that portion of your registration fees that are based on the vehicle's value. It is best to consult a tax attorney to determine exactly how much you may claim.


Registration fees in New York are based on the vehicle weight and whether you require specialized license tags. Remember that the initial registration fee will be higher than renewal, as you may need to pay sales tax the first time you register a vehicle.


Owners of motor vehicles in New York are required to renew their vehicle registration annually, and can do so in person, online or by mail or telephone. See our Registration Renewal section for complete details.


Reviews of How to Register a Vehicle in New York

hello i was wondering if anyone knew how to get a title for a vehicle i purchased. i bought the car from a friend and they lost the title. is there a way i would be able to get a new one?

Hello, I bought a car without a title too in NJ; I live in NYS,; did you ever get an answer? What the NJ DMV told me was to get bonding procedure forms from NYS DMV. The NJ DMV said if you live in NJ you can get improper evidence forms.

Dealership sold a new 2016 Mazda 6 to a customer moving to NY. He has all the paperwork to register the veh. Because the veh does not have California emissions, he cannot register it. Can it be tested to see if it qualifies? His temp plate is expiring tomorrow. What are his options? We have never experienced this before.

Dear Mickeymouse, My dad has a similar issue where his partner died and was registered to them. You must produce a death certificate to the DMV and then have the registration turned over to your name

My partner of 25 years put me on the title of his car he has recently died can I add my name to his registration since he is paid up till 6/17/16? If not, what is the procedure I should follow? What about the money he paid for registration if I cannot put my name on it?

My partner of 25 years put me on the title of his car he has recently died can I add my name to his registration since he is paid up till 6/17/16? If not, what is the procedure I should follow? What about the money he paid for registration if I cannot put my name on it?

i bought a used car from a private owner and my name is writing at the back of the title as a new owner but i do not have a driver's license i have only a learner permit.I want to give the car to my brother as a gift.How can he register the car in his name

I bought a used car from a private owner my name is on the back of the title as new owner if I want to give this car to my brother how can he register it under his name with my name on back of title.

Can I insure & register a car under my name even though it is being financed by my sister?

My cousin just gave me a car the title is in his name how do i get it registered to me?


I just moved from out of state and I need to register my vehicle what process do I need to do in order to get this done, do inspect vehicle first then go to DMV or do I go to DMV then do inspection please someone help me thank you

I moved from NY to PA AFTER 65 YEARS 13 months ago, I am going to relocaate back to NY by dec 1 2015, what am I going to to proceed to register in NY, and what is the time frame I have to initiate this process?

I just moved from Florida and my registration expires at the end of the month. I just transfered my insurance with Geico from Florida to NY and I am waiting for my new insurance cards to come in the mail. What do I have to do to register my car in NY.

i was carjacked at a gas station, and everything i had in my car was gone including my 2nd car's renewed registration sticker, keys, insurance etc, etc.i applied for a duplicate days later but did not get the chance to place the registration sticker on the car windshield before i got a ticket.i have sent all kinds of proof to the DMV and also a Judge. but i keep getting harrassing notices form DMV.What shouLd I do to resolve this issue ? And i 'll be travelling in 2 days?

i am using my moms car in maine she lives in ny and its registerd in ny her insurance is droping her cause its in maine can i keep it registerd in ny and insure it in maine

Hi, I'm from buffalo, ny. If I was to go to a different city like Rochester to purchase a car from a private seller, will I be able to register the car at a dmv in Rochester because its still in NYS?

I am moving to CO in two months. I want to buy a car in NY and drive to CO. Is there a temporary registration and plates I can buy without having the burden of paying all the fees twice???

I don't think so, because NY will want to collect its sales tax on the value of the car.

I have to register my new car but want to keep the same license plates. One plate was damaged in an accident how do I replace this one license plate?

I just buy a 93 saturn and the previous owner sing the mv-82 but she dont put her license number or date of birh will that affect to register the car?

I just bought a new car a lancer 2012.

My temporary plate already expired and I don't still have the registration and the plate.

I bought the car in NJ and and I'm from NY.

I ask the dealer if they can extend my temporary plate and they said NO.

What is my option?

Can I file a complaint to the dealer?

So now we leave our car my wife she cannot use it and shes pregnant and she need to commute for 3hrs one way instead of driving for 15 minutes only.

look at craigslist dealer sell them for 50-$100 for a template. its totally legal. most ny small dealers are registered in nj also. as long as you have insurance.

Is it truly legal because she offered me insurance with it also and it's too good to be true ! Have you done it before?


Turn off Caps Lock. It doesn't make anyone want to help you more.

I was in the process of renewing my registration and getting new plate when I was ticketed for my registration having expired. I thought there was a grace period during which you cd prove that you had a registration. Does that still hold true and if so how much time do I have?

No grace period. The grace period is the time before it expires. Although you may be able to explain your case to a judge, but if you lose you may have to pay extra fees for fighting the ticket and appearing in court.

Is it possible to register an Ariel Atom in NYC.

What steps are needed to register a running car with a salvaged title.

I leased a vehicle in RI and recently moved to NY. I already changed my license and insurance but need to register my car here and get NY plates. My lease is not up yet. How do I go about doeing this? What paperwork do I need?

You need a certified copy of your title from the lien holder, which is the company you leased the vehicle from and a letter head from them stating that they are allowing you to register the vehicle in New York. Should be real simple

My vehicle registartion was stolen from my das board, have no idea who did it. What should I do?

Report it stolen to the DMV and apply for a new one

do I need a drivers license to register a vehicle in New York City?

I recently took over my mom's leased vehicle after she only had the car for a month or less. She was hospitalized and can no longer drive. When she leased the car for 2years she paid sales tax. Do I have to repay sales tax????

Yes i believe so since the paperwork changed hands

i bought a motorcycle from pennsylvania,do i have to pay tax on the amount payed when i go transfer plates?or did the dealer already did?

I have ny NY Auto insurance policy effective 6/16/11. I had Florida auto policy and now have NY auto polcy. My car is financed and am waiting to receive necessary papers from them to get my registration. How much time do I have to work with? I am a ny resident and was a snowbird

would like a time period that I have for above situation- I know I can't drive car until I get the ny registration

Can I insure and register a vehicle in N.Y. state and keep my Fla. License?


i want to transfer my car from florida to new york do I have to pay tax again,I allready paid tax on new purchase in fla.

I was wondering the same thing. I have a FL license, registration and insurance, If I move to NY state, how long do i have before I need to switch it all over? How about getting a job? Do I need to have a NY state ID for that as well?


I recently accidentlly threw away my registration instead of an old one for my trailer,how can I get a new one? The vehicle is fully insured Thanks


I recently accidentlly threw away my registration instead of an old one for my car

how do tou get a new registration card

how much to do it

I sent through Express Mail overnight my surrender auto plate to your office. But when I'm tracking my confirmation number, nobody receive my packages at your office? So, what should I do?

the car dealer registered the car and picked up the plates. the car deal did not go through how do i straighten this out?