Alabama car registration must be completed through the state Department of Revenue Motor Vehicle Division (MVD). Motor vehicle registration must be completed within 20 calendar days of acquiring a new, or leased motor vehicle. New residents have 30 days to register an out-of-state vehicle. However, where to complete a vehicle registration depends on who owns the vehicle and whether the owner is an individual, public utility department or the State. Additionally, auto registration locations vary depending on the county in which the vehicle owner resides. To learn more about completing a DMV car registration in Alabama, as well as the types of information needed to register a new or used vehicle, review the sections provided below.
Alabama Vehicle Registration Information Required
Alabama car registration requires motorists to show proof of auto insurance as part of the registration process. When completing auto registration in AL, license plate issuing officials can usually verify proof of insurance using the Online Insurance Verification System (OIVS). However, motorists may need to present an insurance card if the issuing official is unable to verify insurance electronically. As part of the motor vehicle registration process, the licensing official will perform an inspection of the vehicle. However, DMV car registration does not require emissions testing in the state of Alabama. An odometer disclosure statement for vehicles younger than 10 years of age is required.
Additionally, required vehicle registration information depends on whether a certificate of title is needed or not. If the new car registration requires motorists to obtain a certificate of title, drivers must first apply for a certificate of title through the Alabama Department of Revenue before registering a vehicle. Applicants must present a copy of the vehicle's title application when registering the vehicle. Other required car registry information varies depending on whether the vehicle is purchased from a dealership or a private party.
Where to Register a Car in Alabama for the First Time
If you are wondering, "Where can I register my car?" the answer depends on who the vehicle owner is and how the vehicle is used. While all Alabama car registrations must be completed through the Department of Revenue, each situation varies slightly. Auto registrations for personal vehicles must be completed through a county title and registration office for which the vehicle owner lives. If car registration is to be performed by a corporation or association, the vehicle must be registered in the county in which the vehicle is operated. A new car registration for vehicles owned by the state, county or public utility department must be registered through the Registration Section of the MVD. Vehicle registration for trucks operated outside of Alabama must be registered through the Motor Carrier Services Unit of the MVD.
Additionally, the cost of getting car registration in AL varies depending on the type of vehicle, the vehicle's weight and county taxes and surcharges.
How to Register a New Car in Alabama
Motorists must complete a motor vehicle registration in Alabama within 20 days of acquiring a new or used vehicle. For Alabama car registration of vehicles purchased from dealerships, the car dealership may submit the application of title for buyers, but motorists must present proof of the title application when visiting their county title and registration office to register the vehicle. In the case of a new car registration, drivers must visit a local title and registration office to present the yellow copy of the application for title (or the manufacturer's certificate of origin), along with the bill of sale, license plates and a copy of the buyer's driving license. During the registration of vehicle, motorists may also transfer their current license plates to the new vehicle.
If asking, "How do I register my car if it is a leased vehicle?", then motorists must submit a copy of the vehicle's lease agreement as well as the leasing company's power of attorney form. If a motor vehicle registration is for a vehicle purchased out-of-state or outside of the U.S., motorists must submit the Manufacturer's Statement of Origin, the bill of sale and a copy of the current vehicle registration. Additional vehicle registration information for vehicles purchased overseas include DOT certification letters or EPA documentation. New Alabama residents have 30 days to register a vehicle purchased out-of-state.
Additionally, military members may get car registrations by mail if they are stationed outside of Alabama. However, military members must first contact their local title and registration office. A new car registration may also be completed by a family member if a power of attorney is completed.
How to Register a Used Car in Alabama
The process of how to get car registration for used vehicles or automobiles purchased from a private party varies slightly. This is because motorists must transfer their vehicle's title while also registering the new vehicle with the county at the same time. To complete a used auto registration in Alabama, drivers must visit their county title and registration office to submit the previous vehicle owner's completed title, the vehicle's most recent auto registration documents and the vehicle odometer reading (if the vehicle is younger than 10 years of age). Drivers may also transfer license plates during this time.
Temporary Alabama Vehicle Registration
After completing Alabama auto registration services, motorists must keep all car registration documents inside of their vehicles. New car registration documents include the registration tag and tax receipt. Failure to retain car registry receipts is a driving violation and may result in fines if drivers are unable to provide law enforcement with proof of registration documents.